Have You Found Library Ireland Yet?

Library Ireland says it is “a free online resource of books and articles on Irish history, genealogy, and culture generally. Its aim is to entertain and inform, and to promote interest in all aspects of historical Ireland.”

This website is still a work in progress and you will have to go back on a regular basis to see what is new.

You can browse by genealogy, Irish names, history, social history, folklore, music, people and places.

They have many books to help you with your background research. Top of the most popular books is “A Concise History of Ireland,” by Patrick Weston Joyce. When you click on the link you get a list of the contents with each chapter highlighted so when you click on it you can read the chapter online. Where a topic in a chapter may link to another chapter there is a highlighted number you can click on to find that reference.

Genealogy has several offerings. There is a survey of the population of Ireland with regards to the 1861 census where there was a decline in the population and a comparison of the 1821, 1831 and the 1841 census years.

You will find street directories for Dublin and Ulster Towns as well as other County, City and Borough Directories. The earliest directory is Henry Shaw’s 1850 Dublin City Directory and the latest is Ulster Towns Directory for 1910. The County, City and Borough Directories are all from 1862. They provide a description of the area and a list of county officials and members of the hierarchy.

You will find an 1837 Topographical Dictionary of Ireland by Samuel Lewis. There is an alphabetical index and then a description of the place. Irish Pedigrees is a work in progress and there is Irish Ethnology.

Irish Names has a listing of books to provide definitions of names from the Irish language.

History has a listing of publications and articles to help you with your research. They cover topics with a time range from 1689 to the fight for independence.

Social History has a list of books and articles that can help you understand the times of your ancestors. There is one article from “The Dublin Penny Journal” published on 26 January 1833 that looks at the “Irish Funeral Cry (the Ullaloo, Keeners and Keening at Irish Funerals)” and provides a look at the history of the Ullaloo.

An article of interest to me was entitled “The Poteen” from the “Dublin Penny Journal” on 4 August 1832. Here the author looks at the process of making Poteen and visits a local distillery to find out more. While visiting County Mayo I tried this potent libation and it warms you through on a cold Irish day.

Folklore, Music, People and Places all provide collections of books and articles on various topics.

What will you find at Library Ireland?

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