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ISOGG Ireland

From ISOGG Wiki

This wiki page details some of the resources that are available for the advancement of genetic genealogy in Ireland. Irish DNA research has global implications, largely due to the Diaspora Irish population, which is 80-million-strong. In addition, Ireland has the oldest inherited surnames in Europe and Y-DNA research has the potential to connect with the ancient genealogies and other texts, advancing our understanding of Gaelic clan society. DNA holds a particular importance for Irish family history research due to the destruction of records in the Public Records Office in 1922 and the paucity of genealogical sources prior to 1800.

Irish DNA Projects

The Ireland yDNA Project is a Y-DNA Geographical Project which is also an umbrella project for Irish Surnames.

There are over 9000 surname DNA projects listed on the Family Tree DNA website and many of these surnames are Irish in origin. A list of projects of possible Irish relevance is listed here: here.

In addition, a list of other geographical DNA projects relevant to Ireland can be found here.

It is recommended that Y-DNA testees join their male-line surname project, all relevant Y-DNA Haplogroup projects and all relevant Y-DNA Geographical projects. Note, that projects only exist at FamilyTreeDNA.

DNA Project Administrators

Several of the Project Administrators involved in Irish Surname Projects are based in Ireland or the UK and a list of them can be found here (to be completed). Several of these Project Administrators are available to give presentations on DNA at National & International events and below is a list of these people (with contact details):

DNA Special Interest Groups

  1. Family Finder Interest Group ... run by Ballymena NIFHS on the last Saturday of each month. Contact: Maggie Lyttle

Genetic Genealogy Ireland

Every year since 2013, a series of DNA Lectures has been incorporated into Ireland's national genealogy exhibition, Back to Our Past. This usually runs over 3 days on the third weekend of October each year. The presentations include a variety of topics relating to Irish genetic genealogy and are aimed at the general public as well as more advanced genetic genealogists. Speakers are both national and international, and include academics as well as citizen scientists. Most of the lectures have been recorded and are available free of charge on a dedicated YouTube channel. The schedule of lectures is usually announced several months in advance on the Genetic Genealogy Ireland website. The schedules for previous years can be found here - 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016. The speakers for 2017 were announced in June.

Blogs of relevance to Irish Genetic Genealogy

  1. DNA and Family Tree Research (Maurice Gleeson)
  2. Cork Genealogist - Genetic Genealogy Interests (Margaret Jordan)
  3. Cruwys News (Debbie Kennett)

Genealogy Shows and Gatherings

Throughout the year, there are a variety of events of interest to anyone doing Irish family tree research. At many of these events you will find some of the DNA Project Administrators who make up Ireland's advance guard of genetic genealogists. Below is a summary of the Conferences, Meetings, Shows, Exhibitions, Gatherings & Rallies that are taking place in the next year or so. Any events with a "DNA presence" are marked with an asterisk* beside the date.

If you know of any events that are not on the list, please leave a comment here with details and a weblink so that the list can be updated accordingly.

Conferences & Meetings, Shows & Exhibitions 2017

  1. Mar 2, 7, 14 ... London: the Irish in London lecture series
  2. Mar 4-5 … Cork: Over 50’s show
  3. Mar 11 ... Manchester: National Irish Studies Conference
  4. Apr 22 ... Dublin: IGRS AGM & Spring Lecture
  5. May 6 ... London: IGRS AGM & Open Day
  6. May 7 … Killarney: Over 50’s show
  7. May 15-19* … Nenagh: Clans & Surnames
  8. May 20 ... Dublin: IGRS Genealogy Open Day
  9. Jun 14-21 ... Belfast (+ tours): Tracing your Irish Ancestors (Ulster Historical Foundation)
  10. Jun 28-29 … Athlone: Over 50’s show
  11. July ?* … Belfast: Over 50’s show
  12. Sep 1-2* … Adare, Limerick: The Genealogy Event
  13. Sep 2* … Ballymena: NIFHS Family Fair & DNA Event
  14. Sep 5-6 … Galway: Over 50’s show
  15. Sep 6-13 ... Belfast (+ tours): Tracing your Irish Ancestors (Ulster Historical Foundation)
  16. Sep 25-29 … Portrush, Antrim: Return to the Causeway ~ Family History & Genealogy Conference (NIFHS)
  17. Sep 29 - Oct 14 ... Dublin Festival of History
  18. Oct 20-22* … Dublin, Over 50’s show (i.e. Back To Our Past and Genetic Genealogy Ireland)
  19. Dec 2-3 … Costa Del Sol: Over 50’s show

Family Gatherings & Clan Rallies 2017

  1. April 20-23* ... Ennis: Curtin Clan Gathering
  2. May 10, 2018* ... Ennis: O Dea Clan Gathering
  3. May 19-21* ... Spanish Point: Kelly Clan Gathering
  4. May 20* ... Kilrush: possible Crotty/Griffin Gathering
  5. May 26-28* ... Dunmanway: "Homecoming of the Daniel MacCarthy Glas Archive"
  6. Jun 16-18 ... Courtmacsherry, Cork: O Mahony Gathering
  7. Jun 23-25* ... Galway: O'Malley Clan Rally
  8. Jun 26 ... Dungarvan: McGrath Clan Gathering
  9. Aug 18-19 ... Abbeyknockmoy, Galway: Mannion Clan Gathering
  10. Aug 25-27* ... Tullamore: O'Molloy Clan Gathering
  11. Sep 8-10 ... Inchigeelagh, Cork: O'Leary Clan Gathering
  12. Oct 9-17 ... Madrid & Malaga: O'Donnell Clan Gathering
  13. * ... Donegal DNA Project
  • there will be a DNA presence at this event.

List of Genealogical Organisations in Ireland (including Family History Societies)

Local Family History Societies

These are voluntary organisations consisting of groups of people with an interest in family history research. Some require an annual subscription, others are free. Most hold regular meetings throughout the year and frequently host lectures on topics of interest to the society.

  1. Cork Genealogical Society
  2. Clare Roots Society
  3. Blessington Family History Society
  4. East Clare Heritage
  5. Raheny Heritage Society
  6. Wicklow Genealogical Society
  7. Western Family History Association
  8. NIFHS (North of Ireland Family History Society) & its branches - Ballymena - Belfast - Causeway (Coleraine) - Foyle - Killyleagh - Larne - Lisburn - Newtownabbey - North Armagh - North Down & Ards - Tyrone (Omagh)

Regional & National Family History Societies

These organisations have a more regional or national reach than the local family history societies. An annual subscription is usually required. Regular meetings and an annual publication is available from most of these organisations.

  1. IFHS (Irish Family History Society)
  2. NIFHS (North of Ireland Family History Society)
  3. CIGO (Council of Irish Genealogical Organisations)
  4. IGRS (Irish Genealogical Research Society)
  5. GSI (Genealogical Society of Ireland)
  6. FFHS (Federation of Family History Societies)
  7. Local History Societies in Ireland
  8. Ireland Reaching Out
  9. Accredited Genealogists of Ireland

Commercial Organisations

These are organisations that provide professional genealogical services to paying customers.

  1. Irish Ancestry Research Centre
  2. Irish Family History Centre
  3. Eneclann
  5. (includes access to the County Genealogical Centres for professional genealogical help)

Specialist Groups

  1. Huguenot Society
  2. Guild of One-Name Studies (GOONS)

List of Irish Clan Associations & Surname Societies (with their associated DNA Projects)

  1. Ireland -
  2. Scotland -

Academic research projects relevant to Irish genetic genealogy

  1. Irish DNA Atlas Project
  2. LivingDNA Ireland project
  3. Molecular Population Genetics Lab, Trinity College Dublin (run by Prof Dan Bradley)
  4. Ancient DNA Laboratory, University College Dublin (run by Prof Ron Pinhasi)

Commentary on the Adoption (Information & Tracing) Bill 2016

Several ISOGG-Ireland members submitted a commentary on the proposed Adoption Bill in June 2017. This Bill is due to be passed into Irish law sometime in 2018. The views expressed are the personal views of the authors and not necessarily those of ISOGG. You can view the Commentary here ...


The Objectives of ISOGG in Ireland

The broad aims of ISOGG in Ireland include the following:

Promoting genetic genealogy in general by ...

  • educating the public about the benefits of DNA testing
  • increasing the level of interest among the Irish public

Promoting Irish genetic genealogy in particular by ...

  • encouraging / advancing genetic genealogy research relevant to Ireland
  • engaging academics in the work we do (e.g. via the DNA Lectures at Genetic Genealogy Ireland & Who Do You Think You Are? Live)
  • lobbying organisations to take an interest (including government)
  • raising the level of expertise among Newbie genetic genealogists from beginner through intermediate to advanced … and creating a new generation of genetic genealogists actively promoting the interests of ISOGG in Ireland

Supporting our community of genetic genealogists by ...

  • sharing knowledge & information
  • providing advice & support
  • getting more people into DNA projects
  • raising the level of expertise within the community

ISOGG Ireland representative

Gerard Corcoran

See also