ISSN 1443-5888 Volume 7, No. 9, September 2005.

A Monthly Newsletter: Editor: Terry Eakin, 334 Burns Bay Road, LANE COVE, NSW 2066 Contact E-mail address:
Post Reply
Site Admin
Posts: 1157
Joined: 22 Sep 2003, 19:55
Anti-Pasta & Spam: No
Anti-Pasta & Spam 1: green
6 divided by 2 is the answer: 3
Location: Geldrop, The Netherlands

ISSN 1443-5888 Volume 7, No. 9, September 2005.

Post by irishgen » 24 Jan 2007, 04:26

A Monthly Newsletter: Editor: Terry Eakin, 334 Burns Bay Road, LANE COVE, NSW 2066 Contact E-mail address:
ISSN 1443-5888 Volume 7, No. 9, September 2005.

Introduction: ÔÇÿAll Ireland SourcesÔÇÖ is a monthly newsletter distributed free by E-mail to Family History Societies and interested researchers near the end of each month. Distribution by Australia Post each three months (three issues) costs $6.00 annually within Australia. The aim is to bring items of interest regarding Irish record sources to the Australian genealogist.
The editor would appreciate being made aware of records relating to the Irish, particularly those held in Australia or new in the LDS Family History Library. Back copies available free for download from Note new email address. Continued from Volume 7 No. 8 page 32
The Secession Presbyterian Church: The Secession Church was a branch of Presbyterianism that emerged following a split in the Church of Scotland in 1712 over the issue of official patronage. Before long it had gained a foothold in Ulster. Essential reading for an understanding of the Secession Church in Ulster is David StewartÔÇÖs The Seceders in Ireland: With Annals of Their Congregations (Belfast, 1950). In the 19th century nearly all of the secession churches were received into the Presbyterian Church in Ireland. Therefore, in the list of surviving pre-1800 church records, congregations that originated as Secession churches ÔÇô TyroneÔÇÖs Ditches in Ballymore parish, County Armagh, being one example ÔÇô will be found listed as Presbyterian churches. Synod and presbytery records relating to the secession Church available in PRONI include the following:
Typed copy of the minutes of the Associate Presbytery of Moira and Lisburn 1774-1786 D/1759/1D/22

Typed copy of minute book of Associate Synod, 1788-1818 D/1759/1F/1

Typed copy of extracts from the minute book of the Secession Synod, 1736-1782 D/1759/1F/3

Extracts from Monaghan Secession records, 1777-1820 D/1759/2A/12

The Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church: The origins of the Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church go back to a dispute within the Presbyterian Church over the issue of subscription to the Westminster Confession of Faith, the statement of doctrine of the Presbyterian Church. Those who denied the necessity of subscribing to this work were known as ÔÇÿNew LightÔÇÖ Presbyterians or ÔÇÿNon-SubscribersÔÇÖ. In 1725, in an attempt to deal with the situation, ministers and congregations of the ÔÇÿNew LightÔÇÖ persuasion were placed in the presbytery of Antrim (this did not mean that all the congregations were in County Antrim). About 100 years later the issue of subscription again became a source of contention within Presbyterianism, and in 1829 a small section of the Presbyterian Church withdrew and formed what was known as the Remonstrant Synod. Along with the presbytery of Antrim, this group became the core of the Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church. Some of the early Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church records, created before the split, are in fact Presbyterian records: for example, the early records of Scarva Street Presbyterian Church in Banbridge are to be found in Banbridge Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church records. For a brief background to this denomination see A Short History of the Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland by John Campbell (Belfast, 1914).
The Reformed Presbyterian (Covenanter) Church: The Covenanter or Reformed Presbyterian Church was composed of those who adhered most strongly to the Covenants of 1638 and 1643 and who rejected the Revolution Settlement of 1691 in Scotland. The National Covenant of 1638 was a reaction against the attempts by Charles I to bring the Scottish Church into closer conformity with the Episcopal Church of England and to introduce greater ritual and a prescribed liturgy to services. It firmly established the Presbyterian form of church government in Scotland, and bound the people to uphold the principles of the Reformation. The Solemn League and Covenant of 1643 was composed on similar lines and affected England and Ireland as well as Scotland. During the reign of Charles II (1660-1685) and James II (1685-1688) there was considerable persecution of Covenanters, and many were executed or banished. This ended with the accession of William III. Covenanters refused to accept the Revolution Settlement as it gave the government a role in the running of the Church of Scotland. Covenanters, therefore, stood apart from mainstream Presbyterianism in Scotland.
Of the early history of the Covenanters in Ireland very little is known, save that the denomination was small and scattered. It was not until the latter part of the 18th century that congregations began to be organised and ministers were ordained. Very few Reformed Presbyterian records have survived from the 18th century. This can be partly explained by the paucity of ministers at this time; many baptisms and marriages were performed by visiting ministers from Scotland and there is little evidence of proper records being kept for these events. Congregations were divided into societies, composed of several families living within a short distance of each other. Records belonging to these societies ÔÇô if any were kept ÔÇô have not survived from the pre-1800 period.
A minute book of meetings of the Reformed session of Antrim (the congregations of Kellswater and Cullybrackey) for the period c.1789-1802 is available and is revealing of the principles of the church at this time (PRONI CR/5/9A/1). For example, because the Covenanters refused to accept the political status quo, they did not participate in elections. In 1792 the Reformed session of Antrim was forced to deal with Robert Nickol. It was alleged that Nickol had accepted a bribe to leave the town of Antrim during an election, presumably so that he would not have voted. Shortly afterwards Nickol was summoned to appear before a court in Dublin to give evidence in a trial arising from this allegation. There he was sworn in an ÔÇÿidolatrous wayÔÇÖ. Afterwards he had returned to Antrim and taken an active part in the election there. He was publicly rebuked by the session for his actions.
There are a number of 18th century records in the Reformed Presbyterian Theological College in Belfast, including session and committee minutes, but these are not accessible to the general researcher at present. Moves are afoot to have much of this early material transferred to PRONI. For background information on this denomination see The Covenanters in Ireland: a History of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Ireland by Adam Loughridge (Belfast, 1984). For information on ministers see the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Ireland compiled and edited by Adam Loughridge (Belfast, 1970).
The Methodist Church: In 1738 John Wesley and his brother Charles started a movement that soon acquired the name Methodism. John Wesley made his first visit to Ulster, where the movement had already established itself in many of the major towns, in 1756. He visited Ulster regularly for the rest of his life. The majority of Methodists were members of the Established Church and they remained members of their own local churches even if they attended separate meetings to hear Methodist preachers. Therefore they continued to go to the parish church for the administration of marriages, burials and baptisms. It was not until the early 19th century that Methodists began to keep their own records of baptisms and marriages. For those who think their 18th century ancestors may have sympathised with Methodism, the best place to look is in the local Church of Ireland register.
The Moravian Church: The Moravian Church is a Protestant denomination that originated in what is now the Czech Republic and was introduced to Ireland in the middle of the 18th century. It is formally known as the Unitas Fratrum or Unity of the Brethren. Occasionally Moravians are referred to as the United Brethren (not to be confused with the Plymouth Brethren). Principally through the missionary work of John Cennick, congregations were established in a number of places in Ulster, including Gracehill in County Antrim, Gracefield in County Londonderry and Kilwarlin in County Down. The most successful Moravian community was that at Gracehill, where a planned village was laid out with the church as its focus. The Moravians were very good record-keepers, and the information recorded extended to a wide range of their activities. For the Moravian church at Gracehill, in addition to baptisms, marriages and burials, there are eldersÔÇÖ conference minutes beginning in 1755, congregational committee minutes beginning in 1788, and a register of members, 1755-1791, with an index.
The Religious Society of Friends: The Religious Society of Friends, also known as ÔÇÿQuakersÔÇÖ or ÔÇÿFriendsÔÇÖ, was founded by George Fox in England in the mid-17th century. Soon afterwards the Quaker movement was brought to Ireland by William Edmundson when he established a business in Dublin in 1652. A few years later he moved north to Lurgan, County Armagh, and by the 1660s a Quaker settlement was firmly established there. The Quakers were particularly strong in the Lagan Valley and north Armagh ÔÇô areas particularly associated with English settlement ÔÇô with further congregations established as Ballyhagen, Cootehill, Hillsborough, Lisburn, Richhill and elsewhere.
From the beginning Quakers were among the best record-keepers of any denomination. Monthly meetings contain registers of births (Quakers do not practise baptism), marriages and deaths, minutes of meetings, accounts of sufferings and charity papers. As a result, Quaker records contain a great deal of information about local affairs. A Quaker library at the Friends Meeting House, Railway Street, Lisburn, County Antrim, contains records dating from the 17th century covering Ulster. Many records have been copied by PRONI and were originally given the reference T/1062. These copied records can now be consulted under MIC/16. An excellent introduction to Quaker records is Guide to Irish Quaker Records, 1654-1860 by Olive C. Goodbody with a contribution on Northern Ireland records by B. G. Hutton (Dublin, 1967). This volume includes a section listing surnames extracted from Quaker registers (pp. 193-207). A useful book about Quaker emigration is A. C. MeyerÔÇÖs Immigration of the Irish Quakers into Pennsylvania, 1682-1750 (privately published, 1902).
Surviving Quaker records for local meetings are listed in the church records section at PRONI under the prefix RSF (Religious Society of Friends). The following records relate to the Ulster Province quarterly meetings.
Minutes of province/quarterly meetings, 1674 MIC/16/1A-1B

WomenÔÇÖs minutes of province/quarterly meetings, 1792-1801 MIC/16/4

MinistersÔÇÖ and eldersÔÇÖ minutes of province/quarterly meetings, 1758-1764 MIC/16/4

Marriage certificates, 1731-1786 MIC/16/6

Book of sufferings, 1748-1809 MIC/16/7

Register of tithe sufferings, 1706-1711 MIC/16/7

The Roman Catholic Church: The Reformation in Ireland did not result in the conversion of more than a fraction of the native population to Protestantism; nearly all continued to look to Rome for supreme authority in matters ecclesiastical. At an institutional level, however, the Roman Catholic Church suffered considerably as a result of the disruption caused by the plantations and wars of the late 16th and 17th centuries. Legislation in the form of the Penal Laws in the early 18th century also had an impact, though in spite of these laws Catholic priests and bishops operated freely in most areas. In the course of the 18th and 19th centuries the Roman Catholic Church was able to establish new parochial structures, based in the main on local demographics. Catholic parishes, therefore, do not follow the same pattern as civil and Church of Ireland parishes, and it is important for researchers to take this fact into consideration.
For the historical reasons briefly outlined above, very few Roman Catholic registers pre-date 1800. Among the earliest are those for Clonleigh and Camus, straddling the border between Counties Donegal and Tyrone, and Castlerahan and Munterconnaught, Castletara, Killinkere, Lurgan and Mullagh, all in County Cavan, all of which rave registers starting before 1780 (but no earlier than 1750). PRONI has microfilm copies for Catholic registers in Ulster (reference MIC/1D). The National Library of Ireland also has copies of Catholic registers. For background reading on Catholics and Catholicism in Ulster see Marianne Elliott, The Catholics of Ulster (London, 2000) and Oliver P. Rafferty, Catholicism in Ulster 1603-1983: An Interpretative History (London, 1994).
The Huguenots: Strictly speaking, the Huguenots in Ulster were not a denomination in their own right, but were the French Protestant refugees who left France mostly after the revocation of the edict of Nantes in 1685. Significant numbers of Huguenots came to Ireland, with the most important colony in Ulster at Lisburn, County Antrim. The names of many of the early Huguenot settlers in Lisburn appear in the registers of Christ Church cathedral and several of them have surviving memorials in the adjoining churchyard. About 1700 a ÔÇÿFrench ChurchÔÇÖ catering for the spiritual needs pf the Huguenot colony was built in Lisburn. It was demolished c.1830 and, unfortunately, its registers have been lost. E. Joyce Best, The Huguenots of Lisburn (Lisburn, 1997), includes biographical sketches of Huguenot families who settled in the area.
Marriage Licence Bonds: During the 17th and 18th centuries, when it was illegal for ÔÇÿdissentingÔÇÖ ministers to perform marriages, some Roman Catholic and Presbyterians chose to be married in the Church of Ireland. To do so they would ask the minister to publish banns or purchase a licence from the bishop of the diocese. Before the licence was granted the couple had to enter a bond at a diocesan court. These bonds included the names of the bride and groom and their ages and place of residence. Most of the bonds and licences were destroyed in the Public Record Office, Dublin, in 1922, but indexes to many of them have survived. These indexes contain the names of the bridegroom and bride and the date of the bond. Marriage licence bonds issued by the Prerogative Court in Dublin are available from c.1625 under PRONI reference T/932.
The following marriage licence bonds are available on microfilm at PRONI for Ulster dioceses:
Armagh, 1727-1845 MIC/5B/1-3

Clogher, 1709-1866 MIC/5B/4

Down, Connor and Dromore, 1721-1845 MIC/5B/5-6

An index to Kilmore and Ardagh marriage licence bonds, covering the period 1697-1844, is available on line at ... oIKilm.htm For the diocese of Raphoe see Rosemary ffolliott, Index to Raphoe Marriage Licence Bonds, 1710-1755 and 1817-1830 (Dublin, 1969, supplement to The Irish Ancestor). Note: The Irish Ancestor, 1969-1986, edited by Rosemary ffolliott has been published on CD ROM by Eneclann (2005) ISBN 0 953755 79 7 and is available from Gould Genealogy (South Australia) or online from Eneclann at
LDS to put microfilm in vaults on Internet
Huge effort planned to index family history data. By Carrie A. Moore Reporter Deseret Morning News, Salt Lake City, Utah dated 9 September 2005
Ever wonder what's inside those secured vaults, owned by the LDS Church, positioned high inside the granite walls of Little Cottonwood Canyon? The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is working toward allowing anyone with Internet access to learn more than they've ever known before about the information contained on 2 million-plus rolls of microfilm housed there. Currently, the church is compiling searchable indexes to that information and will eventually make it available for free through an automated database on the Internet.
The church excavated the vaults containing those records on property it purchased in the 1960s, providing a safe repository during the height of the Cold War for birth, marriage, death and census information it considers essential for the salvation of mankind after death. Now church leaders seek to make the information more readily available to the world. "The goal is to create (Internet-accessible) indexes to all the films we have in the vault. That's a long-term process and that's a lot of films," according to Paul Nauta, manager of public affairs for church's Web site. "We've not announced when people will begin to start seeing" the indexes.
Those attending the annual Federation of Genealogical Societies' conference this week at the Salt Palace will get a "sneak preview" of the church's plans. As the project progresses over time, indexes to records from 110 nations previously stored on microfilm will become accessible to virtually anyone, anywhere, through the Internet via the touch of a few keystrokes. "We're showing people how we'll be creating indexes from those films. Sometime in the future we'll ask people to help us create the indexes and make them publicly available, and little by little we'll start to index the films from the vault like we did with the 1880 (U.S.) Census. "The challenge now is it takes a lot of people and a lot of time" to create such an index. "Currently, you have to look at images on paper or burn them on a CD and distribute those to index the data. We're moving the whole process to the Internet and this is a prototype of what that might look like. . . . That's what the biggest buzz is at the conference."
Conference attendees are using a lab at the Salt Palace equipped with a number of computers to demonstrate the new automated database. The microfilm information includes birth, marriage, death and census records. New advances in indexing software utilities and applications mean the LDS Church "now has the ability to produce lots of indexes faster," than it did with previous databases it has digitized, including the 1880 U.S. Census. Making that database available online was a 12-year project, using tens of thousands of volunteers. In the future, the new technology "will provide automated indexing" for an ever-increasing number of microfilms "so people can readily search it from their homes."
As the number of family history researchers continues to grow ÔÇö one study showed 40 percent of Americans have done research on their family history and another said 90 percent have expressed interest ÔÇö demand for online indexes that simplify searching for ancestors has soared, he said. How much time will it take to digitize all the films in the vault? "Let's put it this way, it will depend on how much volunteer help we get," Nauta said. "I think we can digitize the films to be indexed to stay up with demand, but much will depend on how many volunteers we can generate worldwide to index their records of interest. If, in a couple of years, we could get a million indexers worldwide, we could put a big dent" in the massive undertaking.
The indexing demonstration and other planned improvements to the popular Web site are drawing standing-room-only crowds at the convention. The changes "will make great strides to simplify and increase the success of the family history experience," he said. Just when the first indexed information from the microfilms will become available online has not yet been announced. "We don't want to be swamped with people before we're ready to handle it," Nauta said. The new developments won't make more than 5,000 small family history centers housed in LDS chapels worldwide obsolete. Previously, those looking for information contained on the microfilms stored in the church's Granite Mountain Records Vault had to request that copies of information on the films be sent to their local center. At some point in the future, that likely won't be necessary any longer, he said, but "that will continue to be a role for a long time. "Family history centers will continue to be a mainstay" for accessing information on the microfilms for some time to come.
As more of those records become digitized and indexes become available, the role of the local centers, he said, "will probably change. Some people have no Internet access, and they'll use them for that. The role of the family history centers will evolve over time to help people get started" with their research because "many people don't know how to do that. They will become more fundamental to help people get and stay organized, and to answer questions they have doing their research."
Many of those in town to attend the conference are also making use of the church's renowned Family History Library, less than a block from the Salt Palace. Hours have been extended to accommodate guests, with the library open from 8 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. through Saturday. "It's an exciting time for family history," Nauta said. "Those just developing this kind of research as a hobby will never have any appreciation for how far this industry has evolved, even in the past 10 years." E-mail:
Taken from the Deseret News newspaper published Friday 9 Sept 2005 as reported on their website. The American spelling has not been changed and the article is as published except for the condensation of some paragraph lengths.
Articles, suggestions and information for this newsletter are welcome and may be E-mailed to: or posted to Terry Eakin, 334 Burns Bay Road, Lane Cove NSW AUSTRALIA 2066

Post Reply