Free Access to Military Records on Ancestry {today only}

Did you know today commemorate 100 years since British tanks were first deployed at the Battle of Flers-Courcelette during the First World War?

For one day only Ancestry is giving us free access to their UK military records, but only until midnight.

The Military records include millions of service records, medal records, casualty lists and other Army records and Navy records.

Free access to Irish records {15-18 Sept}

Leading Family History website Findmypast, today announced that they will be granting four days of free access to their entire collection of more than 114 million Irish records, the largest available anywhere online. From Thursday 15th September to Sunday 18th September, all Irish birth, marriage, death, census, social history, immigration and military records available on Findmypast will be completely free to explore.

This is to celebrate the landmark publication of more than 3 million historic Irish records released in association with the National Archives of Ireland and Family Search International which I mentioned yesterday. The release consists of a wide range of documents including original wills, lists of Catholics who swore loyalty to the crown or converted to Protestantism, land valuation records and merchant navy crew lists. The records date back to pre-famine Ireland and will be completely free to search forever.

Spanning over 220 years of Irish history from 1701 to 1922, the release is comprised of four highly valuable National Archives of Ireland collections including:

Original Will Registers 1858-1920
Qualification and Convert Rolls 1701 – 1845
Valuation Office books 1824-1856
Merchant Navy Crew lists 1857-1922

This is the first time these important National Archives of Ireland collections have been fully indexed with digitized images of the original papers linked online. All four collections are fully searchable.

Ireland’s historic BMD registers go online {for free!}

Excellent news for those of us with Irish ancestry as this week historic birth, marriage, and death registers for Ireland were made available online at IrishGenealogy.ie.

Not all Registers are currently available. The General Register Office are updating records of Marriages dating back to 1845 and Deaths dating back to 1864 – these will be added later.

Universal civil registration began in 1864, but non-Catholic marriages were only recorded from 1845 onwards. The registers that are online cover the whole of Ireland for the period up to 1921, but exclude the six counties of Northern Ireland after that date. According to Claire Santry’s Irish Genealogy News there are a total of 12.5 million entries online.

You can currently search the following:
BIRTHS: 1864 to 1915
MARRIAGES: 1882 to 1940
DEATHS: 1891 to 1965

Free access to UK records on Ancestry

I haven’t had time to do any research for a while now but I was excited to receive an email from Ancestry that I thought was worth sharing.

Are you from a long line of adventurers? Perhaps a recently discovered cousin is from a long line of minor royals? Now is the time to find out with FREE access to all UK and Ireland records.

Access to the records in the featured collections are free until 29 August 2016 at 23:59 BST. To view the records you will need to register for free with Ancestry.co.uk with your name and email address.

Happy searching!

911,000 Royal Navy Pension records online

I hope the following information might be useful for someone. Today over 911,000 records of British Royal Navy pensions have been published online for the first time at Findmypast.

The publication, released in association with The National Archives, consists of an assortment of documents kept by the Greenwich Hospital and the Royal Hospital Chelsea to record the details of Greenwich Pensioners.

The British Royal Navy & Royal Marines service and pension records span over 230 years of British naval history from to 1704 to 1934 and contain over 270,000 scanned colour images. The collection will allow family historians to uncover fascinating details of their ancestor’s career with the Royal Navy, such as their period of service, where they served, when they joined and if they were wounded in the line of duty.

Since 1804, The Royal Greenwich Hospital has paid small out-pensions to large numbers of deserving applicants who had served in either the Navy or Marines, as well as admitting a fixed number to live as in-pensioners of the hospital. This is the first time that records relating to these payments have been made available online, allowing more people than ever before to learn about the lives of their naval ancestors.

The collection includes:

·       Registers of Greenwich Hospital out-pensioners and candidates
·       Service records of both officers’ & ratings’ between 1802 and 1919
·       Indexes of Greenwich Hospital pensioners and out-pensioners
·       Royal Hospital Chelsea payment returns for England, Scotland, Wales and Jersey
·       Royal Hospital Chelsea admission books, registers and papers

To coincide with the upcoming centenary of the Battle of Jutland, Findmypast has also released over 40,000 records of Royal Navy & Royal Marines personnel who served at Jutland. The Battle, which took place off the coast of Denmark between the 31st May and 1st June 1916, was the largest naval engagement of the First World War and cost the lives of nearly 7,000 British sailors.

Free Access to 10 Million Irish Catholic Parish Records

Leading family history site, Findmypast, has announced today the online release of over 10 million Irish Catholic Parish Registers as part of their ongoing commitment to making Irish family history easier and more accessible than ever before. Fully indexed for the first time, the registers form one of the most important record collections for Irish family history and are free to search forever.

Spanning over 200 years of Ireland’s history from 1671-1900, the Irish Catholic Parish Registers contain over 40 million names from over 1,000 parishes and cover 97% of the entire island of Ireland, both Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.
This is the first time that National Library of Ireland’s collection of Irish Catholic Registers has been fully indexed with images to the original documents linked online. The records can now be searched by name, year and place, allowing relatives and historians the opportunity to make all important links between generations with the baptism records and between families with the marriage registers.
The indexing of these important documents also allows researchers to witness the devastating effects of the Great Famine (1845-1852) first hand. Using the records to examine baptism rates in pre and post Famine Ireland has revealed that the number of children baptised across the whole of Ireland dropped by more 50% in the decade that followed. Across all 32 counties, 2,408,694 baptisms were recorded from 1835-1844, while 1,109,062 baptisms were recorded between 1851 and 1860, a difference of more than 1,299,000 baptisms.

The records also reveal the worst affected regions, with counties Limerick, Wexford, Roscommon and Kilkenny seeing the most dramatic drops in baptism rates.

To celebrate the release of this essential collection, Findmypast is also making its entire archive of over 110 million Irish records, the largest available anywhere online, FREE from 9am Tuesday 1st March to 9am on Tuesday 8th March. Findmypast is home to the most comprehensive online collection of Irish family history records with millions of exclusive records, published in partnership with The National Archives of Ireland, The National Archives UK, and a host of other local, county and national archives.