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More Useful Websites for Genealogy and History Researchers
Posted 23 April 2009
Compiled By: Fawne Stratford-Devai   Biography & Archived Articles

This week`s issue includes links to history and genealogy resources concerning Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, UK, England, Wales, India. Enjoy...

  • Ireland Civil Registration Indexes on Pilot Family Search
    The Irish Civil Registration Indexes (1845-1958) for births, marriages and deaths are now available online at the LDS Pilot FamilySearch website. Registrations cover Protestant marriages from 1845, and all BMDs from 1864 to 1921 and from the Republic of Ireland from 1922 to 1958. These records will be on the Pilot site for a limited time and will eventually migrate to the main site once they are complete and quality checked.

  • Ireland: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI)
    The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) has started to index and digitise all early wills proved in the District Probate Registries of Armagh, Belfast and Londonderry from 1858 to c.1900. It currently provides a fully searchable index to the will calendar entries for these three Registries with the facility to view the entire will calendar entry for each successful search. A second phase will allow viewing the entire will. But the will calendar entry gives a lot of useful information - dates of death and probate, amount left (it can be just a few pounds), and names and addresses of executors. To search, go to web link and click on the Will Calendar Search button on the right. Don't forget that at PRONI you can also search the Ulster Covenant (nearly half a million signatures and addresses of men and women who signed it) and Freeholders Records (early lists of people entitled to vote).

  • Ireland - Wicklow
  • Irish Family History Foundation's Online Research Service (ORS) has announced the availability of the Roman Catholic baptism records of the Wicklow Family History Centre covering the parishes of county Wicklow. This adds another 200,000 baptismal records to their online database and they hope to add their collection of Church of Ireland baptism records in the near future. While on the page, check out IFHFs interactive map to see which centres are currently live and which ones are currently being worked on. To search the indexes complete and online registration (free registration) then searching the index is free. To view the detailed record costs €5.00 each.

  • Ireland: Armagh Ancestry Online Irish Genealogy Databases for Co. Armagh
    The Irish Family History Foundation's Online Research Service (ORS) has announced the availability of the 1821 census records for the Parish of Forkhill, Co. Armagh. The Census was found in an old house and it has 6344 individuals listed. Searching the index is free. To view the detailed record costs €5.00 each.

  • UK: Wills pre-1858
    Before 1858 there were more than 300 courts in England and Wales granting probate. The most important of these was the Prerogative Court of Canterbury (PCC). It dealt mainly with wealthy individuals living in the south of England and most of Wales. Anyone who had property in more than one county was required to have probate granted at the PCC. All pre-1858 PCC Wills are available online at The National Archives with a searchable index. Once you have found a will of interest you can pay £3.50 for a pdf copy of the will.

  • UK - Wales: Welsh Probate Records and Marriage Bonds
    The National Library of Wales holds the Wills, which were proved in the Welsh ecclesiastical courts before the introduction of Civil Probate on 11 January 1858. The library now has an index of over 90,000 records for wills pre-1858 that were tested in the Welsh Ecclesiastical Courts of Bangor, Brecon, Chester (Welsh wills), Hawarden, Llandaf, St Asaph, and St David's. The Library also has indexed some 90,000 bonds and affidavits relating to marriages held in Wales between 1616 and 1837. The searching tools can be a bit challenging so click on new online search; on the left hand side choose Wills or Marriage Bonds and then save. Type the name you are looking for into the Search Box at the top of the box and then click Search.

  • UK: British History Online
    Those researching their British ancestors will be interested in the British History Online (BHO). In collaboration with the Centre for Metropolitan History and the Victoria County History, BHO provides a wealth of valuable information for genealogists. The site is fully searchable. You can also browse by region, such as London, Midlands, North, East, South East, South West, Scotland or Wales; or by time period, from the 11th and 12th centuries through the 19th century. You can also browse by subject, such as local history or ecclesiastical and religious history. Although a great deal of the material is free, some information is only available by subscription.

  • UK-India: British Library India Office Records
    The India Office Records' collections contain much information of great interest to family historians, mainly relating to European and Eurasian people. There are biographical sources for official and non-official inhabitants of the many overseas areas where the East India Company and India Office had influence, and also for home staff based in Britain. Use this website to search: 300,000 births, baptisms, marriages, deaths and burials in the India Office Records; biographical notes from a variety of sources; for mainly British and European people in India c.1600-1949 and for people in other countries connected with the history of the British in India. Try typing in Canada and you will discover births, deaths, baptisms and biographical information.

  • UK: The Geograph British Isles Project The Geograph British Isles project aims to collect geographically representative photographs and information for every square kilometre of the UK and the Republic of Ireland, and you can be part of it. Check out the website to view amazing photographs and learn how to submit your own photos.

Note: For more links to useful genealogy and history websites, visit Fawne Stratford-Devai's biography page where you will find links to many more articles from this series.

About Fawne Stratford-Devai
Fawne Stratford-Devai's work on Land Records and early Ontario records is well known in the genealogy community. A published author of several Canadian and UK research books, she has also contributed articles to the Ontario Genealogical Society's newsletter "Families" as well as writing for the online family history newsletter the "Global Gazette". Biography

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