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SO FRUSTRATED ! Have so many leads but no luck, and Irish records?

(9 Posts)
bohemianbint Thu 05-Feb-09 15:28:40

My great aunt who is about 90 wrote out 4 sides of A4 packed with info about her father and grandparents and details of their lives. I have addresses, the name of the battalion her father was in, names of children, parents siblings, dates, and nothing is being backed up by records.

Interestingly, there is what looks like a match in the 1911 census but according to my aunty he should have been off in the army at this point - or are people still recorded as head of household whilst away? The age, occupation and names of his children add up but not his wife. I'm baffled.

I'd like to look up where my great great grandparents were married and lived when in Belfast but I have no clue where to start looking - and a trip to Belfast is out of the question for now.

Ah well, I don't know if anyone will be able to offer any advice on how to move forward, just tryign to exhaust all avenues!

Ivykaty44 Thu 05-Feb-09 21:01:38

Interesting, the fact your aunt thinks he should have been away in the army - where away would be? No wa in 1911 so why away?

Names do get changed - second names used in RL and first ones put on forms - jhust to confuse you.

Hussles on so gotta go.

Irish records a bit of a big hole as lots lost sad

Tinker Thu 05-Feb-09 23:47:51

If you know whereabouts in Ireland you can write to local parish and they will serach for you. Can be very helpful.

zazen Fri 06-Feb-09 00:10:40

Well there was quite a standing military force before the war.
My grandfather for eg was in the Indian Army and stationed in the northwest frontier (Northern India / Pakistan - obviously before partition) before WW1.
Try military records in London.

The main records of the island of Ireland were burned in the War of Independence in 1922. The Custom House building in which the records were housed, was set alight and all records went up in flames. Here's a link to a newspaper account here
So tinker's suggestion is a good one.

If you do know the parish - or the Bishopric, it might be worthwhile to write to them / look them up online.

The National Library of Ireland also has some records.

and Luckily for you grin the census of the UK 1911 is now available online here

bohemianbint Fri 06-Feb-09 11:53:41

thank you!

Apparently, his wife died when they were both about 23, leaving him with 3 kids. He sent them to live with his parents (I think) and joined up to the Indian Army and went off to the Punjab in 1907. he came back a few years later before going to France and serving at Mons and Verdun. I actually have the name of his battalion and he was decorated at one opint I think, it's just where to start. Would like to talk to my Aunty but she's in South Africa and not sure how to get hold of her.

I'm wondering if he married somoeone else and maybe my Aunt has got the names wrong, as he had her about 20 years after he had children with his first wife, apparently.

I think he was born in Belfast, they came over to Manchester in the mid 1890's (I think) but again, I can't find them on the 1901 census so who knows? You only have to see Who Do You Think You Are to see that much of what is believed by families isn't allways the case in the records! A friend suggested the Mormons so I might try them.

Does anyone know if Belfast is too vague a search, and where the records (if they haven't been burnt!) would be for there?

It's all so fascinating, and yet so frustrating...

Tinker Fri 06-Feb-09 12:25:47

Do you know if he was Catholic? If so, I think the Mormons' recors are sketchy since I think Catholic churches didn't give them access to their records (prob for very good reason, don't Mormons want to convert all ancestors to Mormon retrospectively?

My mum had quite a lot of help when writing to individual churhces/parishes in Ireland

bohemianbint Fri 06-Feb-09 12:34:13

No, I believe he was an orangeman! Will that make it easier, do you think?

Really appreciate all the help!

Tinker Fri 06-Feb-09 12:58:32

Don't know. It is really maddening when you are almost there but not quite.

NizzyNoodles Sat 04-Jul-09 18:01:05

Have you tried looking at the 1911 census for Ireland?

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