Fermanagh Gold Introduction

Irish Birth Entries: Name, Sex, Fathers Name, Mothers maiden name, place of residence; fathers occupation, name of registrar, registration district;

Marriage Entries: Date; name of groom; name of bride; place of residence before marriage; occupation/s; fathers name groom, fathers name bride, (later entries give maiden name of mother also); intended future permanent residence.

Death Entries: Date; Name, Surname; sex; marital status, age, cause of death, name of person who reported death and where death occurred., registrar's district.

Marriages for Protestants were registered from 1845 onwards. Civil registration for all was introduced in 1864. All registrations pre 1922 can be obtained from Dublin, those post 1922 for the 6 counties in Northern Ireland are to be obtained from Belfast.

Not everyone followed the new law and bothered with registration. There seems to have been even less of an inclination to register deaths compared to births and marriages. The register indices are very 'thin' pre 1880 compared to from then on and when one considers the differences in population this tells its own story.

To the best of my knowledge the Dublin office will do a limited search for an entry. You have to have a year for the record and a limited search may cover the two years before and two after if the entry is not found in that year. A limited search covers a 5 year period in other words. A limited search currently costs one pound and fifty pence Irish punts in Dublin. A fee of one pound and fifty pence is then charged for a copy of the entry from the register books. Each search costs one pound fifty....and each entry one pound fifty. If you are looking for Thomas Devine from for example the Strabane registration district, and the office finds ten Thomas Devines, none in the exact period you are looking for then the search will still cost one pound and fifty pence, but each entry will cost one pound and fifty pence. I do not know how they deal with a situation like this, whether they will tell you that there are ten or just send you the one which fits in closest with your information.

If you are looking for Thomas Devine and his sister Mary both born in a five year period...the search will cost one pound and fifty pence per name. The fact that the researcher will be covering the same five register indices is irrelevant. One name per search. If you are in the registration office in Dublin doing your own searching...it still costs you one pound and fifty pence per name. You can always pick out all those other names you are interested in for that period and write down the references....but they will only copy the entries for the people of the first name you have paid for a search for.

Dublin will only do five entry copies in any one day for any one person, this is a result of too many people looking for too many copies per day and the office being understaffed to cope with the demand. They will however, take all other requests for copies, with the payment and post them out to you in time. Postage is included in the costs. Just takes a little longer.

If you have a whole bunch of names you want to check, then your best bet is to employ a professional genealogist...or do it yourself. Currently Dublin offers what is called an unlimited search for a period of 6 hours....either one days searching or two mornings, at a cost of twelve pounds and fifty pence Irish. For this sum the person who is searching can work on however many names they want to from any and all register indices. They may still only request a limited number of entries for that day, but there is no limit on the names. They may still order as many entries as they want to be posted to them.

Words of warning: A limited number of Christian names were in use in Ireland, we have many surnames which are extremely common, particularly in some areas. I have found that I would have approx a 75% rate of hits. Meaning that the entry I get seems to be the one I was looking for...and the others are just history, other people of the same name registered in the same district at the same time as the person I was looking for.....

People did not have to register an even immediately after it happened. I think it is a three month period. Some events may have happened in one year or quarter but may not have been registered until the next.

Searching in the eGRONI in Belfast was more limited than in Dublin. You need to make an appointment a few days in advance for a limited search and a few months in advance for an unlimited search. I don't know if this still applies. Also the GRONI did not copy entries as in Dublin, but only issued copies of full certs or short forms of certs.

Published here with full permission of Jane Lyons