From 1800 to 1922 the UK was the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. So, for a great deal of the period of interest to genealogists, the two islands were part of the same country.
The consequence of this is that there are no official records of migration, because the Irish in Britain during that time were not technically immigrants. As a result, the British archives contain much more material of Irish interest.
There are a lot of similarities between the record systems of Britain and Ireland, particularly:
- The formats of the various civil registration records
- Census-taking practice
- Probate for wills
- Before census and civil registration, parish records are the only direct sources of family information for the majority of the population.
There are four categories of Irish records that are relevant to almost everyone researching their Irish ancestors: civil records, census records, church records and property records.
There are also fascinating tales of family history, passed down orally through the generations, which can be found in most families. Irish Family History is full of myths and legends. These stories may be curious, but always interesting and sometimes historically valuable, perhaps grounded in fact and providing a peek into the past that might not be available through other means.
If you haven't seen it already, the UK National Archives website is well worth taking a look at. The site as a whole offers a wealth of resources, but in particular there are a series of podcasts which are targeted at family history researchers.
In February, our genealogy and translation manager Daniel Horowitz traveled to London for the Who Do You Think You Are? LIVE family history fair.
His visit enabled the reunion of two branches of his SINGER family, who shared decades of information for the first time.
Read the full story about Daniel's happy reunion here at the MyHeritage Genealogy Blog.
With the UK General Election only a week away, people are really starting to size up the Prime Ministerial candidates. We’ve seen endless discussion on their policies, personalities, expenses, and even interactions with the public, but so far relatively little has been said about their genealogy. This post aims to help fill that gap.
We’ve researched the background of the three major party leaders – Gordon Brown, Nick Clegg, and David Cameron. While there’s a lot more information out there than we could possibly fit into a single article, this post should give you a good overview of where the candidates come from. As you’ll see, there are some extraordinary connections among the candidates' roots.
At the recent Who Do You Think You Are conference, MyHeritage had the opportunity to meet Chris Paton - one of the UK's leading family history researchers. Chris hails from Largs, Ayrshire, and is a prominent genealogical researcher with a specialism in Scottish ancestry.
Amid the hustle and bustle of the conference, Chris told us a bit about his background and what he's doing in genealogy today. His career has seen him direct BBC history documentaries and contribute to genealogy publications such as Practical Family History and Your Family Tree.