Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Tuesday's Tip/Tithes on Family Search


      I'm sitting here bleary eyed in my jammies this morning because I needed to check a tithe applotment last night.  Rather than go to the National Archives of Ireland site, I decided to try Family Search's version.  Turns out it's easier to use than the Irish site--typing Patrick Crotty at the NAI site got no hits at all while Family Search came up with several hits.  The problem here is the tithe assessor used the abbreviation Patrk and the NAI site uses exact spelling, always a gamble with Irish names.  Further, while both sites had two entries for Patrick, after I finally found him on the NAI one, only Family Search noted that they were for two different years.

     Another big benefit of the Family Search site is you can turn the page!  At the other site the page with the entry you sought appears and you're done.  Family Search lets you page through the entire parish book.  The great thing about this is there were sometimes notes in the front and/or back of the book, which I didn't realize until I looked through a few.  Looking at Ricketstown, home of my O'Hora ancestors in County Carlow I found notes about how the collected sums were divided, and that they were due half in May and half in November.  There were also notes pertaining to a dispute initiated by the Rev. Whitty as to how the sums should be divided.

     Looking at my Daniel McGarr family in Ballyraggan, Graney,  Kildare I was disappointed to find their entry is still listed on Family Search and NAI as "Danl McGaw of Ballyraggon, Granard, Longford".  Look at the above image, the parish clearly does NOT read "Granard", nor is the county "Longford".  However, I also found this very interesting note at the end of the book:
"Be it remembered that no tithe has been paid for potatoes in the above parish from time immemorial and that no part of the above sum so agreed on was intended as composition for such tithes."

     I'm not sure how it came about, but in different places even within the same county, items that were taxable varied.  Grasslands used for grazing (owned by the landlord of course) were exempt, while in some parishes potatoes were taxable, and as we see in the Applotment book for Graney, in others they were not.

     So now you understand why I'm still in my jammies at 10 a.m., there are alot of pages to read through...I need more coffee.


  1. Irish genealogy intimidates me... I've spent 20 years researching my 3xg-Grandfather John Yore who was born ca 1817, to no avail. He is one of my 3 major brick walls.

    Instead of productive research, I'm perusing blogs this morning... though I'm still drinking coffee & yet to dress!

  2. Well...I've had some of my best break-throughs drinking coffee ;) I know what you mean about Irish research, it took me nearly 20 years to track down my McGarrs. It was a matter of re-reading some old notes that reminded me that while they lived in Kildare, their church was in Wicklow, that and the right records coming online. Good Luck