The National Library

Digging for your Irish roots

Genealogical research books on Irish ancenstry at the National Library in Dublin

If you're like me—and approximately 40 million other Americans out there—you've got some Irish in ya.

Hundreds of Americans cross the Big Pond every year to search out their Irish ancestors here, and the Irish are much obliged to help.

The National Library's Geneaology Service

National Library of Ireland, Dublin
National Library of Ireland, Dublin
Many agencies specialize in lineage tracing (for a modest fee), but your first stop should be the National Library's Geneaology Service.

This otherwise unremarkable room contains leaflets galore, duty tomes of local records and books on emigration pattersn, and a gaggle of computers set up with links to all the useful on-line resources.

Even better, take a number, make an appointment, and get a one-on-one sit-down session with a specialist who can take what you already know and point you in the right direction to find out more and start tracking down the Gaelic branch of your family tree. (They can't do the work for you; just help you figure out the best places and ways to start your own search.)

What to bring with you

National Library's Geneaology Service
National Library's Geneaology Service
Whenever doing any kind of ancestry research, it pays to come armed with as much information (even partial or suspect intel) as you can gather on your own.

Simply knowing that Great-grampa Patrick came from Ireland way back when is not going to help much.

Come prepared with as many specifics as possible, including full names, dates (birth, marriage, death, emigration), and places (down to the village, if possible; at least the county if not).

» Much more on tracking down your Irish ancestry...


Tours Under $995 G Adventures

Related Articles


Related Partners

This article was by Reid Bramblett and last updated in February 2012.
All information was accurate at the time.

about | contact | faq

Copyright © 1998–2013 by Reid Bramblett. Author: Reid Bramblett.