County Sligo, Ireland Genealogy

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

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History

The county was officially formed in 1585, but did not come into effect until the chaos of the Nine Years' War ended, in 1603. Its boundaries reflect the Ó Conchobhair Sligigh overlordship of Lower Connacht as it was at the time of the Elizabethan conquest. This overlordship consisted of the territories, of Cairbre Drumcliabh, Tír Fhíacrach Múaidhe, Tír Ollíol, Luíghne, Corann and Cúl ó bhFionn. Each of these was subsequently made into an English style barony: Carbury, Tireragh, Leyny, Tirerril, Corran and Coolavin. The capital of the newly shired county was placed at Sligo.

The population of County Sligo is roughly 65,393 people.[1]

Archives and Libraries

Cemeteries

On-line Resources

FHL Resources

Several County Sligo parishes have churchyard transcriptions available on microfilm or in book form.

Church Records

Church of Ireland

The Representative Church Body Library has all surviving Church of Ireland registers. Some copies are held at:

  • the local parish
  • local archives and libraries
  • FHL (Family History Library) has few transcription copies of Church of Ireland parishes

Presbyterians

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

You must conduct exhaustive, thorough studies to determine to which Presbyterian denomination your ancestor belonged; and to 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:

  • the local Presbyterian congregation/church (if still in use)
  • distant Presbyterian chapels (if the local chapel closed)
  • town libraries
  • county archives/libraries
  • PRONI (Public Record Office of Northern Ireland)
  • The National Archives, Dublin
  • The National Library of Ireland

Other: The excellent rootsireland web site for County Sligo has some transcriptions from the "Presbyterian Circuit" dating from the year 1806. The FHL (Family History Library) has but few transcription copies of Presbyterian chapels

Methodist

The rootsireland web site for County Sligo has some Methodist circuit transcriptions now available online from as early as 1819.

Roman Catholic

The FHL (Family History Library) has copies of some of the original Roman Catholic parish registers of County Sligo parishes in its collection. You can identify these listed online at FamilySearch.org. If you know the name of the civil parish in which your Catholic ancestor resided, or was from, click "Catalog" and type in the name of the parish and then highlight/click on "Church Records".
The National Library, Kildare Street, Dublin, is the custodian of all available Roman Catholic parish registers from throughout the country--including County Sligo.

The rootsireland.ie web site has data from numerous Roman Catholic parishes now online for searching. There are fees attached (about $7 for each entry).

Civil Jurisdictions and Parish Research Information

Civil Registration of Births, Marriages & Deaths

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:

   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

Estate Records

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:

Land and Property

Maps

Place-Names

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 Sligo. - click county "Sligo"; 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 LibraryIreland.com - 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

Societies

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.

Websites

Gallery

  1. Wikipedia Collaborators, "County Sligo," In Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/County_Sligo. Visited 25 October 2017.