How To Trace Irish Ancestry: 6 Useful Tips


Top o’ the mornin’ to ya me lads and lassies! This is only what Hollywood tells people the Irish say, which was said by no Irish person ever. The fact is, though, that many people in the US and England are originally Irish. Ireland has seen its share of hardships throughout history, which is why many families immigrated. With the passing years, these families adapted to their new lives and homes, and recent generations may not even be aware that they’re originally Irish.

In recent years, people started being interested in finding out more about their origins and ancestry, realizing that they go all the way back to Ireland. Sometimes the family name is what gives away the origins, other times its pure luck, and luck is what the Irish have spread to the world. We bring you this article to give you 6 handy tips on how to trace your Irish ancestry.

Ask Your Grandparents

Grandparents can be a walking history book about your family origins. The first step to learning more about your ancestry is to ask the experts; your grandparents. They don’t have to be your direct grandparents, they could be great aunts and uncles, old cousins, or any family members who keep track of family names and origins. The good news is that every family has at least one family member who knows everything about everyone in the family. Learning these stories your family members have is the first step to your journey of finding out everything you can know about your ancestors.

Hire A Genealogist

Since you are interested in learning more about your North Atlantic origin, hiring an expert is one of the best ways to learn everything you need to know about your family history. These professionals will take the leads you provide them with and start thorough research about everything concerning your origins. The search usually requires physical records as well as online ones, and this is why it is best to hire a genealogist in Ireland, so they can have access to paperwork and physical records of all traces of your ancestors. The more information you provide them with, though, the more accurate the search will be, and consequently, the more precise the results. To choose a trusted genealogist, you will need to check their profile, their previous experience, and read reviews about them.

Solve The Puzzles

An interesting thing about Irish families is that every family name is significant in a way that it can give away many clues. Some family names give away what the ancestors did for a living, others give clues about which part of Ireland they’re from. Some names can help you learn about the century or an approximate time when your family originated. It’s a fun way to look at it like you’re solving a mystery because it is pretty much the same. You have clues that will eventually lead you to find out where you come from.

Beware Of How Names Change

You must be aware of how names change, especially in the US, as family names can be abbreviated or shortened. For example, O’Donald can be shortened to Donald, O’Conor to Connor, and more changes like that. The Irish also have their way of spelling names than how they’re spelled in the US or Britain, so make sure you find out how your surname is spelled in the Irish style.

Keep In Mind Political Changes

Before 1922, all of Ireland was part of the UK. Later, a part of Ireland became a republic of its own, while the north part of the country to this day remains under UK rule. When tracing Irish ancestry, people need to keep in mind that these political changes probably affected the place where the records are kept. Those who come from any part of the country that is now a republic may probably not find the information they’re looking for in Dublin, which is why they need to check this as well.

Learn About Irish Genealogy Websites

The great invention that is the internet has given the world access to numerous facilities that make life much easier. One of the many blessings the internet has generously gifted the world with is genealogy websites. There are specific pages for learning about Irish family trees and history. Check these pages and choose the one that seems to work best for you.

It’s always interesting to know where you really come from and the history that is your family’s legacy. History is part of who we are and learning about it helps us understand and value our heritage. Ireland may not be a large country, but it is rich with unique stories in history that can help people understand a little more about themselves and find their path in the world.


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