Genealogy Research in Ireland

Genealogy Research in Ireland

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Posted Sat 5 Mar 2022 5:49 PM
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My Great, Great, Great, Grandfather (Thomas Dempsey) was born in Bandon, Ireland in 1784. He emigrated to British North America circa 1826 with his wife Ann Dempsey (nee Sutton). They both passed away in New Bandon, New Brunswick, Canada in 1871 and 1887 respectively.

I am planning a trip to Ireland this Spring to see if I can find more of my ancestors. I plan on visiting Bandon and Cork but I understand there may be a Genealogy Centre in Dublin. Can anyone confirm the same and advise how I would gain access to their records to conduct some research?

Thank you,

Dan Dempsey
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
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Posted Sat 5 Mar 2022 8:57 PM
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Hello Daniel!

It's so good to hear that you're planning a visit to our shores! It sounds like you have quite a journey into the past ahead of you. 

You are absolutely right that because your great-great-great-grandparents emigrated before 1864, finding civil records in online archives may be very difficult. You might have more luck visiting the local 

That said, local records might be available in Dublin! If you plan to learn more in person, then the National Archive would be a wonderful first step for you. There are a number of genealogists who offer free personal consultations and have access to a wealth of records. 

Another helpful resource would be the National Library. Here you can search through hundreds of parish records, many of which aren't available online. 

If you'd like to learn more, I'd suggest checking out this thread about tracing ancestry in Dublin. It might just have some more helpful ideas and advice to make learning about your ancestors a bit easier. 

I do hope that this gives you a starting point! 

Kindly,
Rochelle
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Posted Wed 9 Mar 2022 11:27 AM
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Derry~Londonderry
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Hi Dan

Checkout Bandon Genealogy based at Kilbrogan House, Bandon as they have created a website to help those researching their ancestry in and around Bandon. Further details at http://www.bandon-genealogy.com/ 

Also, anyone with Irish connections to New Brunswick, Canada should check out the fantastic range of databases to search on Provincial Archives of New Brunswick Irish portal at https://archives.gnb.ca/Irish/databases_en.html 

Based on his examination of 1851 census for New Brunswick, Professor Peter Toner demonstrated that the bulk of Irish immigrants to New Brunswick originated from 2 regions in Ireland: Cork and northwest Ulster. In the period 1815-1850, Cork provided 19% of Irish immigrants to New Brunswick and they predominated in the town of Saint John itself, while those from Counties Derry, Donegal, Fermanagh and Tyrone in northwest Ulster, who made up 43% of Irish immigrants, settled in the entire lower valley of the Saint John River. 

In1871 New Brunswick, with 35% of its population of Irish origin, was one of the most Irish jurisdictions outside of Ireland. In contrast to the United States the greatest numbers of Irish came to Canada in the pre-Famine period. Peter Toner in An Index to Irish Immigrants in the New Brunswick Census of 1851 (published 1991) states "on the basis of the evidence of the 1851 census, that the vast majority of those in New Brunswick with Irish blood owe that blood to ancestors who arrived in the province before the Famine, and that the overwhelming majority of the Famine immigrants to this province disappeared very quickly by further migration. Most of the Famine people who stayed in the province did do because they came to join relatives who had arrived earlier". 

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Posted Tue 22 Mar 2022 6:21 AM
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Hello Brian: Thank you so much for your helpful guidance. I have visited the NB provincial archives in Bathurst, NB and they were very helpful. My Great, Great, Great Grandparents were married in Ross, County Cork in 1820 and emigrated to New Brunswick circa 1825-1826 with two very young boys.

In addition to hoping to find some family history in Bandon, I would really like to try and find out what port they departed Ireland from and where they landed in British North America. I do not believe it was Halifax but I am hoping it was Saint John. Any idea whether there might still be ship manifests from that far back?

I have just applied for a Reader's Ticket at the National Archives in Dublin. I also hope to visit the churches and graveyards in Bandon. Would you happen to know whether May or June would be preferable? Again, my sincere thanks for your help. Dan Dempsey  [Email address removed due to Community rules]
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Posted Tue 22 Mar 2022 10:36 AM
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Hello Dan,

It's great that you have already organized your Reader's Ticket! The previous answers already contain a lot of information and you are well prepared to start your research upon arrival on the Emerald Isle. 

I'm happy to share some resources related to shipping with you: there are the Ships List and Immigrant Ships websites that I hope may be of use.

About your visit to Bandon - as you know, Ireland may present you with 'four seasons in one day'. On the website of the Irish Meteorological Service Met Éireann you can find the data of average rainfall and temperature by month. As you can see, on average May is a little bit colder but drier and sunnier than June. 

I hope this is helpful! Please let me know if you have any more questions about your upcoming trip to our green island, I'm very happy to help you make the most of your time and research. 

Kind regards,

Vera

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Posted Tue 22 Mar 2022 11:51 AM
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Derry~Londonderry
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Hi Dan

I suspect your ancestors sailed from Cork destined for Saint John, New Brunswick and I also suspect there are no surviving passenger departure lists or immigrant arrival lists for New Brunswick in years 1825-1826. 

In a brochure, The Irish Story: Saint John, New Brunswick, produced by Famine 150 project, a committee formed to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the great Irish Famine in the years 1995 to 1997 states: “In the years between 1815, when vast industrial changes began to disrupt the old lifestyles in Europe, and Canadian Confederation in 1867, when immigration of that era passed its peak, more than 150,000 immigrants from Ireland flooded into Saint John.”

In addition, there are records of emigrant ships to New Brunswick in this period also sailing for St. Andrews, Bathurst and Miramichi. In a feature by Koral Lavorgna, New Brunswick as a Home for Immigrants, which can be read at  https://archives.gnb.ca/irish/databases/immigrationrecords/text/en-CA/Immigrants.pdf , it is recorded that between 1815 (end of the Napoleonic Wars) and 1819, 7000 immigrants, drawn primarily from Ireland, landed at the St. Andrews and Saint John ports of entry. It was also reported in 1817 of several vessels arriving at Miramichi. 

Provincial Archives of New Brunswick have indexed and digitized surviving passengers lists for this period, 135 lists in total, naming 10,451 immigrants, but it does state that this is 'a very small portion of all immigrants to New Brunswick.' 

Passenger lists to New Brunswick have been found for the following ports ONLY:·        
Saint John   1816,1833, 1834, 1838·        
St. Andrews   1837,1838·        
Bathurst   1837 

I definitely would recommend contacting Bandon Genealogy to see if they can offer any assistance, contact details at http://www.bandon-genealogy.com/ 
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Posted Tue 22 Mar 2022 4:58 PM
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Thank you Brian, I fear you are correct. However, I will investigate all possible sources. I have located the marriage record of my Great, Great, Great Grandparents so at least I know they were married in the Diocese of Ross, County Cork in 1820.

Much appreciated.

Dan Dempsey
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Posted Tue 22 Mar 2022 5:16 PM
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Hi Daniel, 

You've received some super helpful tips from the Community, and I hope they'll be helpful for your research. 

Keep us posted on your findings, we'd love to hear all about it! :) 

Wishing you the best of luck on your search, 

Melin
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Posted Tue 22 Mar 2022 5:37 PM
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Thank you Melin. I will.
Best regards,
Dan Dempsey

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