Spring forward

Welcome to my April newsletter & hello to my new subscribers!

Readers will notice a slightly different format to my newsletter which will now feature the main content on my own website.

Genealogy isn’t just my business & passion, it fills my leisure time too. This takes the form of working on my own tree, reading books (both true crime involving DNA testing or historical genealogy mysteries like Nathan Dylan Goodwin writes, as well as academic & popular history books) and this month, I've got 2 documentary film recommendations for you. Both on Netflix and with some element of genetic genealogy.

I found myself with some spare time last week after a visit to the National Archives so I strolled up to Harrington St to visit a church called St Kevin’s. I’d never been in there before but my father, grandfather and siblings were all baptised there, and there were also a number of family members who married in it as well as some funerals.

St Kevin’s Roman Catholic Church, Harrington St.

I liked it. Very Victorian Gothic Revival inside, as befits something that was built in 1865. As I walked around, I narrated in my head like I was on Who Do You Think You Are? “Today, Claire has come to St Kevin’s, a church which has significance in her family history”. I’ve been looking over some of the certificates for family events which took place there since to forge a new connection. Have you ever made a point of doing a visit like this?

Interior of St Kevin’s

In the last of my Rootstech posts, I blogged about visiting the Mecca of genealogy that is the FamilySearch library in Salt Lake City. If you’re planning a research trip there, you’ll definitely want to read this. The overall show was a huge success this year, as illustrated by the below infographic. Speakers are also being sent individual feedback, which I’m looking forward to reading!

MyHeritage recently announced that they had enabled a safe way for users to share their DNA results with a collaborator. This is great news for everyone as it means you can invite someone to help or advise on your results. I've produced a video on my YouTube channel showing you how to do this.

As part of my work as Director of Irish Studies for the International Institute of Genealogical Studies, I delivered a 30 minute lecture on Irish maps and land divisions last week. This is also up on YouTube.

It’s still April, but I’m already thinking ahead to May, when I’ll be delivering a number of lectures. Some of them require booking so I’ll list them here in case you’re local to the area.

  • Ballywaltrim Library, Bray, Co. Wicklow on Saturday, 11th May at 3pm. Introduction to Autosomal DNA for Family History Research. Free but book on 01 2723205 or [email protected]

  • Family Tree Plus Club (webinar) Wednesday, 15th May at 12:30pm. Who was George Walters? How I solved a family brick wall with DNA. This is a members-only talk but they offer a free 7 day trial. If you sign up for it from 1st May, you can attend my talk for free.

  • IGRS Open Day, Helen Roe Theatre, RIAI, Merrion Square, Dublin 2 on Saturday 18th May at 10am. Getting the best from your autosomal DNA. Part of a full day of DNA-themed talks. Free. Booking not required.

  • Swords Library, Swords, Co. Dublin on Tuesday, 21st May at 6:30pm. Introduction to Autosomal DNA for Family History Research. Free but book on 01 8905582 or [email protected]

Happy researching, but remember to get out for a walk every now and then too!