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Ask a Genealogist: A question on basic Irish research.

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If relatives are from Londonderry, do I use Irish records, English records or Northern Ireland.


Reply from Judy Lucey, NEHGS Archivist

Thank you for your inquiry to “Ask a Genealogist”. You are trying to determine where you should begin your genealogical research concerning your Irish grandparents from Londonderry.

As you know, all genealogical research for Irish immigrants’ origins begins on this side of the Atlantic. Once you have identified a place of origin in County Londonderry, you can then use records such as church records to conduct your research. Research on Londonderry ancestors takes place within County Londonderry which is in Northern Ireland. You do not use English records unless they lived there.

Start with yourself and work back in time to your immigrant ancestors. Obtain all the information you can on them from records here and then before jumping into Irish records in Londonderry, educate yourself about how to do Irish genealogical and what to expect. I highly recommend taking a look at Claire Santry’s website, the Irish Genealogy Toolkit at

If you need additional assistance, do not hesitate to contact us.

Posted by David Lambert at 02/13/2014 09:11:38 PM | 

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