Birth, Marriage & Death Records
Civil registration in Ireland started in 1845 with non-Catholic marriages, but full registration of all births, marriages and deaths including Catholics, did not commence until 1864. Unfortunately, many parish records prior to 1900 have not survived.
Ballycastle Catholic Registers
The following registers are held at St. Bridget's Church, Ballycastle, Co. Mayo. The registers can be viewed if you visit in person, but no genealogy services are available. The priest can be reached at +353 (0) 96 43010 to make an appointment. These registers up to 1880 are also available on microfiche film #1279204 from LDS.
Ireland, Civil Registration Indexes 1845-1958(free, online searchable database)
Part of new pilot database from the LDS Familysearch.org (see above). The indexes for Irish birth, marriage, and death records came on line 23 January 2009.
Irish Family History Foundation (online searchable, but pay per view) Claims to be the largest family records database in Ireland. You can search on-line for free but you pay for each document you view (8 Euros per credit). They also offer commissioned research.
One of the most comprehensive collections of family history records, including Irish. The subscription costs from about £9 to £13 per month (2014 prices).
Family Search(LDS, free searchable databases)
Many parish records are on microfiche only, and can be ordered to view at your local LDS center for a nominal fee. Baptism and marriage registers from a number of Mayo parishes are available.
Templemurry, Co. Mayo Baptism Records (free)
Some transcribed baptism records (1854-1884) from Steelaun and Rathfran in Templemurry, Co. Mayo (near Killala), hosted by the IrelandGenweb project.
Headstones in North County Mayo(free, online searchable database)
There are very few surviving records of deaths or burials in old graveyards in Ireland prior to the 20th century, so this searchable catalogue of legible headstones from graveyards and cemeteries in North County Mayo provides a unique resource.
1911 & 1901 Irish censuses(free, online searchable database)
Currently being digitised by the Irish National Archives, Mayo came on-line on 28th August 2009. Nice search facilities. Original census forms can also be viewed.
1901 Irish census(free, online searchable database)
Includes 300,000 individuals for seven counties: Galway, Leitrim, Mayo, Roscommon, Sligo, Wexford and Westmeath, and is free to search. Provides useful alternative search options to the National Archives census search
Genes Reunited(online searchable database)
Searchable UK web site with over 500 million names where you can post your family tree. Includes many Irish ancestors. Free to post your family tree and to search, but you pay a six-month fee (£15) to contact the owners of other family trees.
The IrelandGenWeb Project for County Mayo
A collection of genealogical resources and links for County Mayo. This is part of the WorldGenWeb Project, which is a not-for-profit volunteer genealogical organization.
Irish Telephone Directory
If you know the townland that your ancestors came from, this is a quick way to check if any descendants still live there. Of course, not all telephones numbers are listed. Don't forget to click the "Residential" button before you start the search.
National Archives of Ireland
Offers various genealogy resources and further links to other genealogy sites. They are very helpful if you visit in person.
Indicates how common the surname was by county during the 19th century.
If you can't find the necessary records, then a simple DNA test might help. By comparing your DNA (from saliva or a cheek swab) with a genealogical database, it may be possible to determine if you share a recent common ancestor with another person in the database, and it's possible to get an indication of how closely related you are. DNA tests can also be used to determine your ethnic origins.
There are three types of DNA test that can be useful for genealogy:
1) Autosomal DNA tests have the advantage that they track all your ancestral lines (both male & female). However, unlike Y-DNA tests, they are limited in range to only a few generations as autosomal DNA gets diluted by 50% at each generation. The current tests (as of 2016) record about 1 million SNPs which allows comparisons to about 6 generations back (i.e. fourth-cousins). The main autosomal DNA testing companies charge from $99 to $199 (plus shipping) for their tests (2016 prices). A comparison of autosomal DNA testing companies is posted here.
The test fee normally includes access to a database of your nearest DNA relatives that tested with the same company (providing the individual permits contact). Additionally, you can download your results and then upload them to the free website, gedmatch.com, where you can compare your results with those from other DNA testing companies (for free), so increasing your number of potential DNA relatives.
Autosomal DNA test results of descendants of some of the familes recorded on this website have tested with 23andme.com, and results are also posted at gedmatch.com.
2) Y-DNArefers to the 'Y' chromosome whichis passed through the direct male lineage only, almost unchanged over many generations. It can be used to trace male (surname) lineage back for thousands of years. Females need to test Y-DNA from a close male relative such as a brother, father or paternal uncle. One of the most widely used genealogical tests is the Y-chromosome 37 STR marker (Y-DNA37) which starts from about $149 USD (Family Tree DNA, 2016). This was the DNA test used by the Golden and Langan families posted on this web site.
3) mtDNA (mitochondrial DNA) is passed down virtually unchanged through the direct female line only. Males inherit their mother's mtDNA but do not pass it on to their children. The mtDNA tests start from about $199 USD (Family Tree DNA, 2016). Males and females can use their own mtDNA to track their maternal lineage, but Autosomal or Y-DNA tests are usually more useful for genealogy.
Family tree building software (free) A free version of Legacy Family Tree is available for download. There is also a paid version with extra features. The free version seems adequate for most users and was used to create the descendant charts, etc. on this web site.
Irish Citizenship If one of your parents was born in Ireland you are automatically an Irish Citizen. If one of your grandparents was born in Ireland you can apply to your local Irish Embassy for citizenship through Foreign Births Registration. The following link is for residents of the western USA applying for Irish Foreign Births Registration.
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