Inspired to begin researching your Irish heritage? You’ll need more than luck! Here are a few tips to get you started in your search.
Check in with genealogy associations in Ireland
Many family researchers are familiar with tools such as ancestry.com, but there are scores of other valuable resources that are particularly helpful for individuals exploring their Irish heritage. Ireland is home to many regional genealogy associations such as the Cork Genealogical Society, the Ulster Historical Foundation and the Western Family History Association that possess troves of information. If you know which province your family hails from, you may be able to pinpoint such an organization and uncover materials pertaining to your ancestors.
Talk to your family
What better place to start researching your family than, well, your family? Discussions with living relatives can help you uncover your ancestors’ stories. You may be just one phone call away from learning your family’s ancestral home in Ireland, what jobs your ancestors first held when they arrived, and how they might have anglicized their names after settling in the United States.
Be prepared for roadblocks
Each individual’s family history poses unique roadblocks that lead to frustration and can sometimes push researchers to give up on their journey. If you have Irish ancestors, you’re likely to run up against a well-known hurdle: the Irish War of Independence and the Irish Civil War resulted in the destruction of troves of historical documents. Understanding where you might have difficulty uncovering helpful information can save you a headache and keep your spirits up to continue your search!
HSP's 5-week course Researching Your Irish Ancestors begins on April 16, 2019. Classes will guide you on the best practices for researching your Irish ancestors, from uncovering invaluable record sets to utilizing free resources online that bring you closer to your heritage. Learn more and register.
Image: Trinity College Dublin circa 1900. National Library of Ireland, Creative Commons.