Unlike some other U.K. states, Irish research can be very difficult for periods prior to civil registration. Primarily because a large portion of, if not all, records normally accessed by genealogists in their search have been destroyed in full or in part at some time in the past, either voluntarily or otherwise. To compound the problems, with the split in governments between Eire and Northern Ireland in 1922 has resulted in further search problems for the Irish enthusiast. Remember, however that before 1922 only one Ireland existed and this is the prime period that most researchers are seeking genealogical records for.
For general enquiries, it is almost impossible to institute an in-depth research program without knowing an Irish place-name for your ancestor when researching in Ireland. Most records are arranged by town, parish, barony, county, Registration District, or Poor Law Union and the vast majority of these are housed in a multitude of regional archives and libraries, though an ever-increasing number are now being consolidated in the National Archives of Ireland, the National Library of Ireland and the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland. In some minor circumstances we have a few limited county and state-wide indexes that, at minimum, will provide us with a distribution of the family name and; at best, a pioneer ancestor might be located. This is always the first priority – to locate the family – and these index searches are covered by the minimum advance retainer we request. Your chances at success are much better, however, if you know a town name or parish or county by which to isolate the search more effectively.
If you do know a place-name, you’ll receive some research along with added research suggestions based on information you’ve supplied. In this case, the minimum retainer covers evaluation of your information, a preliminary research plan, implementation of some initial research strategies along with a follow-up evaluation of those research results in our Report. Before conducting any research in Ireland, however, it is always best to first attempt to exhaust all known possibilities of locating an Irish place-name from where your ancestors may have come, from within historical records dealing with other later personal life events and places.
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