Just 20 years ago, online Irish genealogy databases were somewhat rare, but today there are dozens of them available. Many of them are free as well. Searching through these databases will help you in locating your ancestors from the beautiful Emerald Isle. Remember during your search that Ireland and Northern Ireland have been separate countries since 1922. Among the free genealogy sites on the Internet, you will find those that are dedicated to Irish ancestry, blue-eyed genealogy research and research worldwide.
Counties in Ireland
The clickable map on IrelandGenWeb.com shows all the counties in Ireland. Click on the county name in the image to learn more about each county. The counties are divided into four provinces, of which Leinster is the largest. The provinces in Ireland are:
- Munster (South)
- Ulster (North)
- Leinster (East)
- Connaught (West)
Counties in Northern Ireland
There are six Irish counties that make up Northern Ireland, including:
Irish Genealogy Databases
Here follows a list of Irish genealogy databases, along with a brief description of each:
- Irish Records Index covers 1500 through 1920, with pedigrees, parish registers, probates, orphan's court records and histories.
- Irish Family History Foundation offers databases which are part of the "Irish Genealogical Online Record Search" (ORS). This initiative contains the largest collection of Parish records for the island of Ireland which are searchable online. The indexes list surname, first name, year and county of all records. Offering birth, death and marriage records, the databases are free to use.
- I Dream of Genealogy -This website is not an actual database, but it does give a listing of popular Irish databases.
- Ancestry Ireland is a database / website of the Ulster Historical Foundation. They offer several types of databases in their large collection: free, paid subscription, member only and pay to view. Explore family histories, Irish civil parish maps, births, marriages, and deaths and more.
- Gen Wed UK offers database search engines to locate Irish genealogy records online. Gain access to multiple free Irish genealogy databases through this portal.
- Roots Web is the oldest and largest free genealogical community on the Internet. Take advantage of searchable databases and free web space.
- CensusDiggins provides access to free genealogical record databases for census records, Civil War records, UK genealogy and Irish genealogy records, marriage records and more.
Irish Genealogy.ie helps you research Irish ancestors by providing access to a database of 1.3 million church records free of charge. Irish Genealogy.ie features the Central Signposting Index (C.S.I.). The C.S.I links to an additional three million genealogical records. Hosted by the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism, the website offers records of baptism, marriage and death. There are 734,000 Church records from Dublin City and 600,000 records from Kerry. Funding for this project came from the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism, Dublin Heritage Group and Kerry Genealogical Research Centre. Carlow County Library and Cork County Library church records will soon be available as well.
Ireland Genealogy Links
There's no need to reinvent the wheel when you're searching for Irish ancestors; just look to this website prior to searching online. Ireland Genealogy Links contains dozens of links to a wide array of Irish genealogy websites, already neatly gathered and alphabetized for you. Simply scan the list and start clicking your way to those elusive ancestors.
Ireland and Northern Ireland Gen Web
A part of the vast World Gen Web Project, Ireland Gen Web offers a searchable database of surnames. As mentioned previously, Ireland and Northern Ireland have been separate countries since 1922.
For information pertaining to Northern Ireland, please see the Northern IrelandGenWeb Project. You may also use the query boards, email service and digital archives.