IRISH-IN-CHICAGO-L Archives

Archiver > IRISH-IN-CHICAGO > 2005-03 > 1109793242


From: Jim & Sharon Kavanagh <>
Subject: Re: [Irish in Chicago]
Date: Wed, 02 Mar 2005 11:54:02 -0800
References: <5A36849A-8B40-11D9-9460-000393C64D48@porterville.k12.ca.us><5A36849A-8B40-11D9-9460-000393C64D48@porterville.k12.ca.us>
In-Reply-To: <42260A27.40807@aol.com>


This discussion about research in Ireland is informative. Our experiences
have been with County Carlow Heritage Cntr. and religious Sisters in Carlow
& Dublin (and in U.S.). Have not tried to get info from a priest because
we don't know any cousins and when we visited we did not have any firm dates.
Now we have parish records (LDS and Rootsweb) on our emigrants and this
fall will visit County Wicklow/Carlow's Hacketstown Parish and nearby
townlands to try to have the sort of experiences Kathy (below) reports she
had in the Galway. I agree, Kathy, that attitude is everything when dealing
with (not only) the Irish! Courtesy, kindness, consideration were the
first Irish attitudes we experienced all over the Island, to say nothing of
delightful conversation.

As to the Co.Carlow Heritage Centre: we wrote to them giving the only info
we have on our other emigrants. We do not have parents' names for this
brother & sister. We do not know townlands nor RC parish(es), etc. We have
sketchy family info from this side of the pond, period! Well, Carlow
Heritage wrote back with nothing but the fact that they would need the
parents' names and places of birth, etc. and charged us $80 (U.S.) When we
pointed out their contract stated that if no new info was provided we would
receive a $60 refund, they never seemed to receive those e-mails nor our
letter so we chalked that one up to experience and forgot about it. Not too
bad.

We tried searching for the female emigrant who became a nun in U.S.1862. We
corresponded with nuns in Rhode Island, Hartford CT, Dublin (mother house
of the order) and Carlow Town (where that Order began to work in 1837). In
all four cases we wrote initial letters with small checks ($15 U.S.) and
inquired as to whether they would be willing to help us and, if so, offered
an additional donation to cover their research. We did receive good
information and correspondence from a helpful archivist in Hartford,
Connecticut.

But as to research with that same Order in Ireland (where we suspect our
relative first had contact with them - indeed may have sailed with those
nuns from Ireland to East Coast U.S.), the Irish archivist responded to our
inquiry and our offer for additional funds and then replied with a charming
letter full of generic local family info (about the Irish name) and
referred us to the Order in the States altho she was (should have been)
aware of the info we had already had from the States since it was enclosed
with our questions. When I look back at my letter, I asked four specific
questions. She answered not one of them, nor did she refer to any of our
questions, just a chatty response and a postcard photo of their convent in
Carlow. It was almost like since she could not provide any info she was
embarrassed by that and just went on with a little chat. Not an expensive
experience and not even taken by us to be a way to get funds, but still
frustrating - to be offered the prospect of info and then to be told,
again, there is none.

Another thought, the role of working with genealogists may be given to a
nun who is 'retired' (I know they don't retire, but some are no longer
working the same sort of day they did as younger women) because the sisters
don't really have time for our questions.

I suspect that is the essence: the Irish clergy don't have time for our
questions and don't have any idea of how serious we are in our searches (as
Kathy noticed). The Church has no idea (or does not care) how potentially
lucrative their answers to us could be if they had the time and the notion
to gear up. Well, the LDS already has had the motive to do just that and
they are willing to share and are continuing to make more and more records
available. I have seen such an increase in what is available both from my
local LDS family history center and from generous Rootsweb listers in just
3 years.

Sharon

At 12:47 PM 3/2/2005 -0600, KPW114 wrote:
>My research in Ireland was very interesting, I did not go to the
>heritage centers but directly to the church, in Galway Rahoon Parish
>there was a nun in charge of family history for that parish, she was
>wonderful and very organized (what nun is not)she was very happy to see
>me and was more than helpful beyond the call of duty, she was interested
>in me, for this way she found out the rest of the story on my family,
>which was very interesting to find out that my family also check in with
>the church to let church know where they went, who they married all very
>neatly written down, I was very surprised at this myself. The nun in the
>parish had the original books must remember that these books are very
>old and that maybe a reason they do not want you to look at them. If
>everyone handled the books they could literally fall apart, she had
>rewritten the books and I was allowed to look at those while she look in
>the old books, which I thought was a brilliant idea. For about 100
>Euro's that I paid her was more than worth it for I was able to go back
>to three great's parents, aunts and uncles so forth and maps of just
>exactly where they lived.
>
>In other parish, the priest wrote down all my family history that he
>had, I was not allowed to look at the books, he literally ran 4 parishes
>and quite a busy man so 100 Euro's was well worth it, along with sending
>me to see a family who held the early books on deaths, with this family
>a whole wealth of information came my way, even who made the
>arrangements for sending my grandmother to the states. Sad part of this
>was not a single family member had a headstone but he new where they
>were buried and what they died of, and who in the area was a family member.
>
>Another thing I have found is just driving around the area your family
>is from stop when you see someone outside if their age is over 60 and
>ask if they know your family, my family is from Barna, I stop to asked
>this man about my family and he told me if I look to my left that is
>were your grandfather was born, and than information more than I could
>dream of came my way along with many other people to go and see, I
>can't say if it was just the luck of the Irish, but my Mom and I said it
>seem like everyone just drop from heaven.
>
>I feel I was very lucky but a lot was sad many had left the area, with
>no trace of them or only rocks left of there homes, many used as sheds.
>Just a note that all information I received from the neighbors was 100
>percent correct.
>
>I really think that finding your family history it really depends on the
>parish, priest, nuns and most of all your attitude when you ask and how
>well prepared you are with information that you have, I did have
>everything that I knew written down and parish wrote in what area's that
>was blank, I can say the nun and the priest were very delighted that I
>was organized. Always be prepared to pay and give the higgest your regards!
>
>Just a thought,
>
>Kathy
>
>Dan Hogan wrote on 3/2/2005, 11:27 AM:
>
> > I did state in my post that the catholic church defends its position by
> > saying they do not have the time nor man-power to do the amount of
> > look-ups requested. The issue of whether the church has a right to
> > charge a fee is not in question, most all that have discussed this in
> > the past on several rootsweb lists agree on this, it is the fees that
> > anger many.
> > The respected heritage centers do provide information, I never said
> > they did not. In the archdiocese of Cashel & Emly, which is most of
> > Tipperary, the standard fees are 79 Euros just to do the look-up, and
> > then with the horrific Irish naming pattern, you really do not know if
> > it is the right person. Then it is another 25 Euros to make the copies
> > and send via snail mail. These fees do not depend on the amount of
> > research, they are fixed.
> > Dan Hogan
> >
> > On Tuesday, March 1, 2005, at 06:09 PM, wrote:
> >
> > > I have done a lot of research in Ireland and had no problems with the
> > > Catholic parishes I requested marriage and baptism records from. The
> > > catholic
> > > church is suffering from a shortage of priest and the priest they have
> > > in some
> > > cases have to cover two parishes which does not leave them a lot of
> > > time. I do
> > > not feel it is a catholic against protestant thing. As for the
> > > heritage
> > > centers I have also obtained information from them. The cost of
> > > course depends
> > > on how much research has to be done. We need to remember that these
> > > are not
> > > volunteer centers.
> >
> >
> > ==============================
> > Search the US Census Collection. Over 140 million records added in the
> > last 12 months. Largest online collection in the world. Learn more:
> > http://www.ancestry.com/s13965/rd.ashx
> >
>
>
>
>==============================
>Find your ancestors in the Birth, Marriage and Death Records.
>New content added every business day. Learn more:
>http://www.ancestry.com/s13964/rd.ashx


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