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Family Tree

10 million Irish parish records are now free to search online

The documents show the impact the Great Famine had on Ireland’s population.

MORE THAN 10 MILLION Catholic parish records have been released online for free.

The marriage and baptism records span over 200 years from 1671-1900. They contain over 40 million names from over 1,000 parishes and cover most of the island of Ireland.

This is the first time the National Library of Ireland’s collection of Irish Catholic Registers has been fully indexed with images to the original documents linked online.

They are searchable for free indefinitely on family history website To mark their release, the website is making all its 110 million Irish records free for one week. is also making its Irish records freely accessible this month.

Brian Donovan of said the newly-indexed records will make tracing family history more accessible.

Speaking to today, he said the parish records are “the most important resource for Irish ancestry research prior to the 1901 census”.

“The real value is that fact that this fulfills the desire of most people out there to make genealogy easily-accessible.”

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The records can now be searched by name, year and place.

The Great Famine

The documents show that the number of Catholic baptisms halved after the Great Famine.

Across all 32 counties, 2,408,694 baptisms were recorded from 1835-1844, while 1,109,062 baptisms were recorded between 1851 and 1860.

Donovan said:

The Irish story of hardship, migration and opportunity is a global story, and in partnership with the cultural institutions around the world we are bringing the fragments of their lives within reach.

The website’s collection of Irish family history records is published in partnership with a number of organisations including the National Archives of Ireland and the National Archives UK.

More information can be read here.

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