Thursday, 28 February 2013


What a gem this is... thanks to Larry Brennan of CRS (Clare Roots Society) for bringing it to my attention.

Searchable form of 1922 military census goes online today

A SEARCHABLE DATABASE based on a military census from 1922 will be launched online this morning.
The census outlines the full extent of the Free State Army's manpower during the Irish Civil War, and was held in November 1922 to audit the general state of the National Army at the time.
The census, which came about halfway through the war as the National Army fought against anti-treaty members of the IRA, was conducted in an effort to ascertain precisely how many recruits the army had at its command.
"Without accurate information, headquarters staff could not adequately estimate pay bills, feed, clothe or procure weapons or even determine how many troops they had at their disposal," said Defence Forces spokesman Commandant Denis Hanly.
The Army Council therefore decided in October 1922 that it would undertake a census, documenting its entire manpower at the stroke of midnight on the morning of Friday 13 November that year.
The census forms recorded the regimental number, rank, corps, name, age, home address, marital status, religion, and next of kin for a total of 33,210 soldiers.
The delicate act of carrying out the census – and the fear that personal data could fall into enemy hands – meant particular security checks were undertaken.
"The Census forms were stamped with an individual number to ensure each form could be accounted for and were distributed to each of the General Officers Commanding," Commandant Hanly said.
"From this point they were further distributed to each post and outpost where a compiling officer recorded the details of each soldier at that post at midnight on the 12th-13th November."
The returned forms were later bound into 10 separate volumes.
While original scanned versions of the census forms have been available since last November – in an effort to mark the 90th anniversary of the census being held – a searchable version will be available online later this morning.
Hanly said the Defence Forces hoped to make the documents accessible to all, including those who had ancestors fighting on the pro-Treaty side of the Irish Civil War.
"The census returns are a snapshot of the strength and disposition of the National Army at a specific point in time," he pointed out.
"They are a valuable source of information on any soldier serving on that night, but the returns cannot account for every soldier that served during the Civil War."
The census will be accessible at from 10am this morning.


Sat. 02 March 2.30 pm in the Clare Museum, "Brian borumha's biography, the camel from Scotland and Irish foreign affairs in around 1100."   This talk looks at the career of Muirchertach Ua Briain, the great-grandson of Brian, and  his international contacts.
Sat 09 March, 2-30 pm in the Clare Museum, "The Moravians at Crossard:  a view from the records".  This talk considers the written accounts behind the short-lived Moravian Church at Crossard outside Corofin, the reasons for its building, the members,  and the relationships with the local gentry families, the Burtons, Bloods and Bindons.
These talks are part of the Hidden Clare series in the museum on Saturday afternoons.

image courtesy of


Christ Church Limerick 200 Year Anniversary
Genealogy & Family History Day
16th March 2013
10am-4pm, Talk 4pm-5pm
Christ Church, 51A O'Connell St., Limerick

Event aimed at all age groups. All welcome. 
As stated on poster any requests for further information 
on the day itself may be sent

 Thank you.

As part of Christ Church Limerick's 200 year anniversary celebrations we are planning to hold a Genealogy & Family History day in our O'Connell St. Church on the 16th March.

In 2013 the Methodist Church, on its present site in the city, will be 200 years old and in the same year the Presbyterians will have been in Limerick for over 350 years. Christ Church Limerick became a United Presbyterian and Methodist Church over 40 years ago and continues to thrive. In this anniversary year we are celebrating all of this history and these significant historical milestones.

As a United Presbyterian and Methodist Church in Limerick we are in the unique position to be able to bring together family history records from our combined churches. We have also very close links with other local churches, and in particular the Church of Ireland where we share certain responsibilities in relation to governance of the local schools with a Protestant ethos. We are planning to bring together all the available Church Registers and School Roll Books for our community on the Saturday of the St. Patrick's Day weekend for anyone, from complete novice up to experienced genealogist, to review. We also hope to have some Catholic Registers available on the day.

Due to the relatively small Protestant Community in Limerick, it is understandable that over the centuries there have been significant inter-denomination marriages and community interactions. Consequently, for family history enthusiasts and novices alike, the opportunity to review all these documents together is significant.

For the novice genealogist or someone who just wants to find out more about their own family we will have volunteers on hand to assist them to find their family records and help them to commence building their own family tree. To make the search as rewarding as possible we would advise anyone, who is intending to come on the day, to have done a little family research beforehand. e.g. Find out all the names of your grandparents, any significant dates and where they were from. Obscure Christian Names are particularly useful in helping to confirm connections. We also intend to have internet access available in the Church on the day to allow people to commence initial searches on some of the very useful internet sites that are available on-line.

For the more experienced genealogist with particular connections in the Limerick area the opportunity to review these records in the one location should be very exciting. We expect to have available on the day:- Limerick Methodist Registers from 1842, Limerick Presbyterian Registers from 1829, Christ Church Limerick Minute Books, Adare/ Ballingrane registers, Limerick Church of Ireland registers, Limerick Baptist Church registers, St. Michael's National School Roll books, Villiers School roll books, &co., Rate Valuation Books and Registers of Electorates from the City Archives which are currently not digitized. 

On the day, Michael Wheeler, a genealogical enthusiast, will give a talk on his own extended Wheeler family research entitled "Silver Bells of Memory". His talk will focus on the historical and intriguing aspects that he has encountered whilst researching his own family tree.

For further information please contact


Wednesday, 27 February 2013


Congratulations and grateful appreciation to all involved in transcribing the Cancelled Book Sets.
 It is a project that will make a difference for years to come.... see the details forwarded by Christina Hunt below...

From: Christina Hunt <>

We have added 1863+ and 1870+ for the Electoral District of Miltown Malbay.

We had some great transcribing help from Gordon Corbett and Joe Quinn. These
were all proofread to make as sure as we can be that the names were correct.

If you want the image - please tell me the name of the place and street or
townland as well as who you are looking at on the page.
My email is

The search engine has included the valuations, so you can use our search engine.
Add the word Valuation with a name to search these records.

These are truly census substitutes in that you have the heads of household
named and you can compare with another set roughly 10 years apart.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013


Tuesday 26th February
6 pm Kilrush Library, Pound Street, Kilrush Co Clare

Kilrush has been selected as the host location for the main 2013 National Famine Commemoration which will take place on Sunday 12th May 2013. As part of the many commemorations and events that will place between now and the 12th May, the "Famine in Clare" Exhibition will be displayed in Kilrush Library.

The "Famine in Clare Exhibition" concentrates upon the famine in Clare (1845/52). The exhibition explores each Poor Law Union, its electoral divisions and workhouses. Reports are included from those such as English Poor Law Commissioners and Relieving Officers, the Board of Guardians and Poor Law Inspectors. Lists of names of those who died in the Kilrush and Ennistymon Workhouses will be displayed.

Followed at 7.30p.m.
In Teach Ceoil Grace Street Kilrush Co Clare

By The story of the West Clare Railway by Jackie Whelan

The West Clare Railway (WCR) originally operated in County Clare, Ireland between 1887 and 1961, and has partially re-opened. This 3 ft (914 mm) gauge narrow gauge railway ran from the county town of Ennis, via numerous stopping-points along the West Clare coast to two termini, at Kilrush and Kilkee (the routes diverging at Moyasta Junction).

The West Clare Railway has had a fascinating history... here a few links for your enjoyment.

The West Clare Railway (WCR) originally operated in County Clare, Ireland between 1887 and 1961, and has partially re-opened. This 3 ft (914 mm) gauge ...  read more...

DID I EVER TELL YOU ABOUT...? John Grenham does...

How often have you seen the eyes roll, or hear the groans, or other mutterings as you or someone else in the family relates yet again, the "story about..."

 Well, even John Grenham from The Irish Times battles to ensure that family stories, recollections, important details are passed on... read his comments below.... and glean all you can from these stories, you'll wish you did later on.


I would love to hear what is the most told tale from your own family...... for our family, it is one of a few told often by an older relative who has no idea of how many times we've heard them. Each time though, there seems to be a slight difference, not so much by choice, but by  a valiant attempt to recall any and everything as he  battles with an ever decreasing ability to remember much at all.

 Keep listening, support your loved ones, for all too soon, you will be wishing them back to hear that strange tale, just one more time...

 If you would like to comment, click on Comments below. 

Saturday, 23 February 2013


A very important event occurred recently in Ireland, when finally apologies where made for the sending of girls to the Magdalene Laundries.

"The Taoiseach broke into tears as he made an historic and emotionally charged state apology to survivors of the Magdalene Laundries.

There was a sustained standing ovation after Taoiseach Enda Kenny described the Catholic-run workhouses as the “nation’s shame”, accepting the state’s direct involvement.
And politicians applauded the weeping women as they watched on, finally vindicated after years of struggling.
“I, as Taoiseach, on behalf of the state, the government and our citizens deeply regret and apologise unreservedly to all those women for the hurt that was done to them, and for any stigma they suffered, as a result of the time they spent in a Magdalene Laundry,” Mr Kenny said."

For the rest of the story, click on the link Kenny makes apology to Magdalenes  which will take you to The Irish Echo...

Google is full of references to this time and these events... this is just one of them...

There are books and movies, all of which not only show the sadness and often, terrible conditions, but also the fighting spirit of many of the girls.

A survivor, Maureen Taylor, talks of her time there...

May the lessons of the past show us how to plan the future...

                                                       former Magdalene laundry, Dublin, Ireland


From: "Clara Hoyne" <>
Subject: Photos of Ireland in the 1930s: The past is a foreign country

Hope you enjoy Ireland in the 1930s in technicolour!


Photos of Ireland in the 1930s: The past is a foreign country


An amazing collection of old colour photographs detailing Ireland in the 1930s.


 This is just one of many great photos courtesy of

You can also find Irish Archeology on Facebook. 

Connemara woman





1 – 3 March 2013

Hi All,
Ennis book Club Festival Tickets on Sale
Just one week to go.

Tickets for all events in all venues are available at Glór Theatre Box Office
Tel. 065 6843103 or 

Roisin Shortall for the Sunday Symposium on
Power and Corruption

We are delighted that Roisin Shortall TD has accepted our invitation to be on the Sunday Symposium panel.The Sunday Symposium is always a weekend highlight. This year's theme ofPower and Corruption will also be debated by former Government Minister Mary O'Rourke; Brian Lucey, professor of Finance in Trinity College Dublin and a prolific author and commentator on financial and banking issues and by Elaine Byrne columnist with The Sunday Independent and the Irish Expert to the European Commission on corruption. 

Last September Deputy Shortall resigned as Minister of State at the Department of Health and also resigned from the Parliamentary Labour Party. Her resignation follows days of controversy during which she demanded an explanation from Minister for Health James Reilly for his controversial decision to add two towns in his constituency to a priority list for the location of new primary care centres. 

The Sunday Symposium on Power and Corruption takes place in Glór theatre at 10 am on Sunday the 3rd March. 


Our programme is wonderfully varied. It includes fiction, poetry, social comment, literature and drama. We have readings, lectures, workshops, theatre, art exhibitions and lots of chat.

Authors and speakers for 2013 include Marina Lewycka, John Banville, Joseph O'Connor, the BBC's Fergal Keane, Michael Harding, Sean Moncrieff, Conor Brady, Róisín Shortall, Mary O'Rourke, Áine Lawlor, Brian Lucey, Belinda Jack, Michael Smith, Royal Shakespeare Company's Education Department, Elaine Byrne, Tony Curtis, Margaret Hickey, Liz Ryan, Kate Bateman, Pádraic Breathnach, Anne McCabe, Patricia Canning of The Reader Organisation, Ennis Walking Tours, and Clare Three Legged Stool Poets. You will find much to choose from in this year's programme available here.  

Irish Polar Exploration
Illustrated Talk – a great family event

MICHAEL SMITH is a best-selling author who specialises in the history of Polar exploration. He has written eight books, appeared on TV and radio and lectured at venues including Buckingham Palace, National Museum of Ireland, Queens University Belfast, the Royal Geographical Society, the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge and University College Cork. His book An Unsung Hero – Tom Crean was a No 1 best seller and largely responsible for raising awareness about Irish explorers. His books led to a statue of Tom Crean being erected, stage plays and TV documentaries and the story being incorporated into the national curriculum in Irish schools. Michael will give a fascinating illustrated talk on Saturday afternoon in Glór. 

Glór Theatre Box Office
Tel. 065 6843103 or 

Reading Shakespeare

The Royal Shakespeare Company's Education Department will host workshops for the general public during the festival. These workshops will enhance the knowledge and confidence of attendees in accessing Shakespeare's stories, characters and language. Public workshops will run in the Temple Gate Hotel on Saturday the 2nd of March. Numbers are limited so early booking is advised.

The visit of the Royal Shakespeare Company's Education Department is made possible by funding from the Arts Council. The Arts Council participation in the Cultural Programme to mark Ireland's Presidency of the Council of the European Union is supported by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.


Combine your love of reading with a great weekend away! Check out our website for links to accommodation providers offering special festival rates and top class hospitality.




As well as watching here for the latest updates on the forthcoming Clare Roots Society Genealogical Conference coming up in April 2013, you can also keep up to date on Facebook as below...

There is also a County Clare Genealogy Group on Facebook, which is having great success in helping with research... you must be a member of Facebook to join, then you can just type the name of the group in the search box at the top of the FB  home page/news feed and that will take you to the site. As it is a closed group, you will 'ask to join' and one of the admins will sign you in. This way, it keeps your details within the group and vets the scammers. If you know someone who is already a member, then they can add you to the group once you are registered with Facebook.

 If you have any questions, please add to the comment box below.