News / findmypast

Christmas symbols…or are they? ›

9 December, 2013

From mistletoe to mulled wine, Santa to snowmen, there are certain modern day symbols that are synonymous with the festive season. But was this always the case? We consulted our Irish Newspaper Collection to find out what today’s Christmas icons would have meant to our ancestors. If you were travelling with Santa Claus in 1851 there would be no sleigh… Read more ›

An insight into 19th Century Dubliners ›

12 July, 2013

As we delve deeper into our family history research we begin to imagine how our ancestors lived out their daily lives, the clothes they wore, the food they ate and the towns and streets they lived in become as important to their story as who their grandfathers and daughters were.   To get a flavour of their surroundings you can… Read more ›

In the Newspapers – Easter Rising 1916 ›

29 March, 2013

This weekend will see the Easter Rising being commemorated in Ireland. Technically the anniversary is the 24th of April but the connection with Easter is so strong that the commemorations tend to occur on Easter Sunday and Monday, rather than on the specific date of the Rising itself. The story of the Easter Rising has been told many times and… Read more ›

19th Century Medicine ›

25 March, 2013

Our latest release the Irish Medical Directory 1852 lists medical practitioners, and members of scientific associations and societies, in Ireland in the mid nineteenth century.   Included in each entry is a notation of where the doctor or pharmacist received their training, previous places of employment and a list of their notable publications.   Some doctors made startling claims for… Read more ›

Criminal Irish in Britain ›

26 February, 2013

When it comes to family history research having a black sheep in the family can be a boon. Legal records offer another route to find ancestors who inexplicably manage to avoid the census.  The bureaucracy of the legal system gives us access to information that is often lacking in other records.  There are usually physical descriptions of prisoners and a… Read more ›

Famous Family Trees: Daniel Day Lewis ›

21 February, 2013

Not for the first time Oscar buzz surrounds Daniel Day-Lewis.  His powerful performance in Lincoln has already earned him a Bafta and this weekend we’re crossing our fingers at the findmypast office for an Oscar win. The Day-Lewis family has strong links with both Ireland and England.  Over the generations the family has moved back and forth across the Irish… Read more ›

The Men of the WW1 Wills ›

12 February, 2013

The men in the WWI records left their belongings to their mothers, fathers, sisters and aunts more often than they left them to wives.  Very few of the records mention specific bequests, they can have had little to leave behind other than the wages owed to them by the army.  These small legacies were not the only mark they made.… Read more ›

Famous Family Trees: Imelda May ›

5 February, 2013

Rock-a-billy songstress Imelda May is held firmly in the hearts of her old neighbours in the Liberties in inner city Dublin.  Fiercely proud of her Dublin roots, they all may be surprised to learn that her family is from all four corners of Ireland.   Imelda’s parents are first and second generation Dubliners.  Her father’s family came from Longford and… Read more ›

Starring Tom Lefroy as Mr Darcy ›

28 January, 2013

Today is the 200th anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.  Famous for her witty observations of provincial English gentry society Austen undoubtedly looked to friends, family, neighbours and visitors for inspiration.  The question remains how much of her personal life, wishes and dreams she brought into her work. One young Irish man’s influence on Austen’s work… Read more ›

Christmas in Ireland ›

20 December, 2012

What makes Christmas, Christmas?  Some of our traditions go back to the earliest days of Christianity others are more recent introductions. In medieval times Christmas was equal amounts religious solemnity and pagan-inspired revelry.  Advent, the four weeks before Christmas, was a fast period, meaning no dairy, meat or eggs.  For most people it wasn’t too difficult to abstain.  Only the… Read more ›

The Green Redcoats ›

14 December, 2012

There are over 10,000 Irishmen recorded in the Kilmainham Pension records and they represent the ordinary men who signed up to serve with the British Army in Ireland during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century.  Many, as is revealed by the documents, were illiterate labourers and probably joined the army as it offered a secure income and the chance… Read more ›

A fit Object of His Majesty’s Royal Bounty ›

10 December, 2012

We conceive it unreasonable, that such Persons who have faithfully served Us in Our Army, whilst their Health and Strength continued, should, when by Age, Wounds or other Infirmities, they are disabled from serving Us any longer, be discharged without any Care be taken for their future Subsistence After receiving a Royal Charter from Charles II in 1679 the Royal… Read more ›