Posted by on 22 April 2012 in General

Last month we celebrated St Patrick’s Day by releasing two brand new collections of Irish records. We’ve also made some of our older collections from Ireland far more useful – which adds up to great news for anyone with roots on the Emerald Isle.

Our first new release contains over 200,000 pages from the Belfast Newsletter, created over the past 300 years. The Newsletter is the oldest English-language newspaper still in circulation, and our digital archive covers everything from the Irish Rebellion to the French Revolution.

But of course, it’s not all about global events. You’ll also find birth, marriage and death announcements, local adverts, military notices and thousands more smaller articles that could well feature members of your family. You can browse the editions by date.

Our second addition is a similarly diverse mix of resources, going back even further. Dublin, Probate Record and Marriage Licence Index, 1270-1858, includes over 100,000 index entries extracted from wills, letters of administration, marriage licences and other records within the Diocese of Dublin.

Most of these court records reveal names, dates, places and occupations. They’re also fully searchable, so it’s easy to pinpoint the cases that affected your family.

Speaking of fully searchable records, we’ve added indexes to four of our rarest and most sought after Irish collections. These are partial censuses for 1841 and 1851, covering County Antrim, County Cork, a range of locations across Northern Ireland, and a similar assortment for the Republic.

Most Irish census records from before 1901 were destroyed in the 1922 fire at the Public Records Office in Dublin. However, some fragments survived, and these have been combined with other records from the same time to create our lists.

Don’t forget, we already have over 30 million Irish records on the site, including birth, marriage and death indexes plus Catholic and Anglican parish records.

See all our Irish collections



When are you going to add the Belfast Newsletter database to the card catalogue so that it can be searched by keyword ?

23 April 2012 at 3:47 pm
David Newton 

No it isn’t in the running for oldest English-language newspaper at all. That title belongs to the London Gazette which beats this title by the best part of a century. Get your facts right.

26 April 2012 at 5:14 pm
Russell James 

Apologies David, you’re quite right. I should have said ‘the oldest general, daily English language newspaper’. The Gazette has at various times been published weekly, twice-weekly and daily.

26 April 2012 at 5:24 pm

Did you miss my question when replying above ? The Belfast Newsletter database has been with us sometime now but has yet to be added to the card catalogue, making it impossible to search by keyword, or even find on Ancestry unless you use the link on this blog. Any idea when it will be added ?

27 April 2012 at 3:23 pm

Hi Mick sorry for delayed response. You can find the newsletter via the Card Catalogue if you un-check ‘UK & Ireland’ when you search for it. For some reason it has not been categorised correctly (will follow up on this).

As for the newsletter content itself, you can only browse the images – normal search will not work as these images were not indexed.

30 April 2012 at 3:12 pm

Thanks very much for the reply.

2 May 2012 at 3:44 am