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Irish Civil Records

Information concerning 1901 census of Ireland.

The 1901 census of Ireland took place on Sunday, 31st March. It is the oldest complete census of the entire island as almost all of the 19th century returns no longer exist.

Although these returns are obviously very recent in genealogy terms they are still extremely useful.

Each census record contained the following information;

  • Name and surname of every occupant who was present in each dwelling.
  • Relationship to the head of household.
  • Religion
  • Education (if ecah person could read or write)
  • Respective ages
  • Sex
  • Their rank, profession or occupation
  • Maritial Status
  • County of Birth
  • Ability to speak either English or Irish.
  • If anyone was either deaf, blind, idiot, imbecile or lunatic.
  • |Example of 1901 Census of Ireland

    An Example of 1911 Census of Ireland Return.

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    The 1901 census returns also recorded details of each particular house, giving the number of rooms, out-houses and windows as well as the type of roof. Policemen stationed at the various R.I.C. barracks throughout Ireland were not required to enter their full names but entered the initial only. This was also the same for inmates of mental hospitals.

    AGE

    The age of each occupant or tenant is obviously the most useful information given in the 1901 census of Ireland. However the information needs to be treated with caution. Compared to the next census in 1911, the ages of many people do not match, especially for older people living at this time. Nevertheless the age of people can still be used as a rough guide and can help narrow the ranges of years needing searched for birth, marriage or death records in either civil or church records.

    LOCATION

    When the names of all or most of the family are known, along with the general area, but not the precise locality, it is possible to have the returns searched of that entire area to identify the relevant family. This is useful for genealogy researchers when the surname is very common; the likelihood of two families of Kelly's living in the same area giving the exact christian names to their children is slight.

    RESEARCHING THE 1901 CENSUS

    As with the 1911 census of Ireland, the basic geographical unit used in carrying out the 1901 census is the District Electoral Division. These are subdivisions of a county and were used for electoral purposes. Within each D.E.D. the census was then divided into townlands and, in urban areas, street names.

    The question on religion was very specific with instructions that "Members of Protestant Denominations are requested not to describe themselves by the vague term 'Protestant' but to enter the name of the Particular Church, Denomination, or Body to which they belong".

    Major Sources of Irish Ancestry

    Church Records Land Records Directories
    Registry of Deeds Wills Emigration Records
    Newspapers

    Genealogy Sources for each Irish County

    Antrim Armagh Carlow Cavan
    Clare Cork Derry (Londonderry) Donegal
    Down Dublin Fermanagh Galway
    Kerry Kildare Kilkenny Laois
    Leitrim Limerick Longford Louth
    Mayo Meath Monaghan Offaly
    Roscommon Sligo Tipperary Tyrone
    Waterford Westmeath Wexford Wicklow

     

    PRELIMINARY IRISH GENEALOGY RESEARCH NOW REDUCED

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