County Roscommon, Ireland Genealogy

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County Roscommon
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Guide to County Roscommon ancestry, family history and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, parish registers, and military records.

History[edit | edit source]

Rathcroghan, near Tulsk, a complex of archaeological sites, the home of Queen Medb, was the seat of Kings of Connacht and then to the High Kings of Ireland. This was the starting point of the Cattle Raid of Cooley, an epic tale in Irish mythology. County Roscommon as an administrative division has its origins in the medieval period. With the conquest and division of the Kingdom of Connacht, those districts in the east retained by King John covered County Roscommon, and parts of East Galway. These districts were leased to the native kings of Connacht and eventually became the county. In 1585 during the Tudor re-establishment of counties under the Composition of Connacht, Roscommon was established with the South-west boundary now along the River Suck.

The population of Roscommon is roughly 64,436 people.[1]

An 1812 detailed description of the county was published in 1832 and is available online.

See Weld, Isaac, 1774-1856. Statistical Survey of the County of Roscommon. Dublin: R. Graisberry, 1832.

Archives and Libraries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Visit the FHL Favorites web site for numerous sites containing online cemetery inscriptions.

The following cemeteries have online data at Internment.Net:

  • Baslic Cemetery
  • Boyle Assylinn Cemetery (partial listing)
  • Boyle Kilnamanagh Cemetery (partial listing)
  • Croghan Estersnow Cemetery (partial listing)
  • Elphin Town Saint Patrick Churchyard Cemetery (partial listing)
  • Elphin; Kiltrustan Cemetery (partial listing)
  • Kilcooley Cemetery (partial listing)
  • Shankill; Old Shankill Cemetery
  • Stokestown Cemetery (partial listing)
  • Tulsk; Kilcooley Cemetery
  • Tulsk Village; Tulsk Cemetery (partial listing)

Census[edit | edit source]

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Online Records[edit | edit source]

Church of Ireland[edit | edit source]

The Representative Church Body Library has just about all surviving Church of Ireland registers from the 1922 Four Courts, Dublin fire. Some transcript copies are held at:

  • the local parish
  • local archives and libraries
  • FHL (Family History Library)

Presbyterian[edit | edit source]

Presbyterian records began much later than those for the Church of Ireland, some from the mid to late 18th century, but more especially from the early 19th century.

The vast majority of Presbyterian chapel registers have never been centrally archived, and scanned and imaged. They are found in various locations. [Regretably, preservation of these precious records and the rich Presbyterian heritage of local Presbyterians as well as descendants at large whose roots originate from Ireland, are at risk unless and until such time when these registers are all copied, or digitized and preserved.]

You must conduct a thorough study to determine to which Presbyterian denomination your ancestor belonged; then, determine the whereabouts of surviving registers--if any. The following most likely places to find and search Presbyterian registers starts with checking the following locations:

  • PRONI (Public Record Office of Northern Ireland)
  • the local Presbyterian congregation/church (if still in use)
  • distant Presbyterian chapels (if the local chapel closed) as registers transferred usually to the next nearest chapel
  • town libraries
  • county archives/libraries
  • The National Archives, Dublin
  • The National Library of Ireland
  • Presbyterian Historical Society, Belfast - has older registers for some chapels/congregations


  • The excellent rootsireland web site for County Roscommon currently has no Presbyterian chapel registers data available online. Keep checking back to see if this status changes.
  • The FHL (Family History Library) may have a few transcription copies of Presbyterian chapels. Do a "Place" search in the FamilySearch Catalog (FamilySearch Catalog) under the name of the civil parish (if known) in order to find available ones to search. To view a list or see a map showing the civil parishes for County Roscommon, visit
  • The Civil registrations of marriages beginning 1845, holds much Presbyterian data. To search the database of these marriages, from 1845 to 1958, visit and click "All Records Collections" and scroll down to "Ireland Civil Registration Index 1845-1958".
  • Try "Google!"-ing the three search terms (words) of [name of] "township/civil parish", "Presbyterian" and i.e. "marriage", etc, for on-line data.
  • Searches in Church of Ireland parish registers ought to be performed as sometimes events surrounding Presbyterians were recorded in these for many areas--especially in earlier years

Methodist[edit | edit source]

Most of Methodist Church registers of baptisms and marriages are still held locally at the Methodist churches. You must contact the minister office of each chapel, bearing in mind that they may or may not conduct ancestral searches on your behalf.

PRONI (Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, Belfast) possesses the largest collection of Methodist registers which is mostly available only on microfilm.

The Wesley Historical Society Archives, at Edgehill College, in Belfast also has significant record holdings in both microform format of records and hard copy registers. You may initially contact them; however, they will not perform genealogical searches for you. You will likely need to contact a professional researcher or a record agent on your behalf. Here is the contact information for W.H.S.A.:

Wesley Historical Society Archives
Edgehill Theological College
9 Lennox Vale
Belfast BT9 5BY
United Kingdom
Tel: 028 9068 5870

The rootsireland web site for County Roscommon currently does not have any Methodist data online. In the future this web site might have some Methodist data available to researchers online. Keep checking back often.

Roman Catholic[edit | edit source]

The FHL (Family History Library) has copied by far, the vast majority of Roscommon original Roman Catholic parish registers and are available on microfilm. You can identify these listed online at, if you know the name of the civil parish in which your Catholic ancestor resided, or was born. Visit's "Catalog" and type in the name of the parish and then highlight/click on "Church Records". [Note: If you know a place-name in Ireland, but do not know the name of the civil parish, visit the excellent web site (under the auspices of the Leitrim-Roscommon/ site) to help you determine the name of the civil parish in which the place-name was found.]
The National Library, Kildare Street, Dublin, is the custodian of all available Roman Catholic parish registers from throughout the country--including County Roscommon.

Now, the web site has made data from numerous Roman Catholic parishes online for searching. There are fees attached to viewing the transcribed details (about $7 to view each entry), however, the web site allows users to search their indexes.

Civil Registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths[edit | edit source]

Government-sponsored registration of births, marriages and deaths began in 1845 (Protestant marriages only) and 1864 (whole population). To find information on the vital events of your Irish ancestor, here are some helpful websites for obtaining critical information:

  • To obtain certificates of birth, marriage or death for your ancestor[s], write to or contact the following record office; the cost is €10 (about $13) per certificate:
  General Register Office, Government Offices,
Convent Road Roscommon.
Tel: +353 (0) 90 6632900
LoCall: 1890 252076
Fax: +353 (0) 90 6632999
Fax: +353 (0) 90 6632988

There are fees for performing particular searches; see their website for further information.

Directories[edit | edit source]

Estate Records[edit | edit source]

Estate records may provide names of households in such records as leases, rents, and mortgages. These ought to be consulted and used when extant, especially when church registers do not exist for the time period being researched. Here are some web sites which hold estate records and some transcriptions of same:

Civil Jurisdictions and Parish Research Information[edit | edit source]

Land and Property[edit | edit source]

Maps[edit | edit source]

1885 County Map: Courtesy of London Ancestor

Military[edit | edit source]

Place-Names[edit | edit source]

Here are two important place-name aids/tools for locating your Irish place and its parish jurisdiction[s]:

  • List of All Townlands, Towns and Townships in County Roscommon. - click county "Roscommon"; then click "Submit" to view a complete alphabetical listing of all townlands, towns and townships and the parishes in which they reside
  • Topographical Dictionary of Ireland by Samuel A. Lewis; at - provides a rich 1837 historical perspective of each Ireland parish and large township; great for determining which churches existed in each parish--Church of Ireland or Nonconformist

Probates[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

Family history societies often publish helpful journals, transcripts, compiled genealogies and host helpful websites. They may have ongoing projects to transcribe records and create indexes. Most societies publish queries in their journals and maintain lists of members’ research interests that may be helpful to you. You may want to join one of these societies, reap the benefits of their expertise and resources or support its efforts.

County Roscommon Family History Society

Websites[edit | edit source]

Useful Church Records Websites[edit | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia Collaborators, "Roscommon," In Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, Visited 25 October 2017.