Be proud of your Irish Ancestors
Some people have done all the research; others know just the name of that person who left Ireland, perhaps long ago with little in their pocket but an address to go to. Some have ancestors from half the counties in Ireland, others just a little-understood and half-forgotten link. Perhaps your sister or cousin has looked into it, but you are not sure what they found.
One thing you are sure of, though – in some field or street in Ireland, one day your ancestor left their home, in many cases never to return. When you think about them, you find yourself wondering what it was like for them and how their lives lead to yours and perhaps your children or grandchildren.
The good news is there are plenty of resources to help you find your Irish ancestors, no matter what part of the world you hail from. With any luck, you’ll find the names you’re looking for and be able to make it official with a Certificate of Irish Heritage; framed proof that the ‘home’ feeling you get in Ireland isn’t just wishful thinking.
So whether your search takes you to a hillside village in County Donegal or a crumbled cottage in Connemara, we wish you ‘Go n-éirí an t-ádh leat’ (may the luck go with you).
Tracing Your Ancestry
At first, it may seem like a daunting task to discover your family’s history in Ireland. Millions of people throughout the world have roots leading back to Ireland, and there are plenty of resources available to help find your county, town, village or even house of origin. For some, it can be an emotional journey to return back to where it all began, but this newly discovered heritage is a reward to be passed on through family history to younger generations. Blogger Gerry Britt experiences it all in his account of tracing his Irish roots.
The Irish government is distributing official Certificates of Irish Heritage to anyone who can prove that they have Irish ancestors. This nifty video explains the whole proccess. The first Certificate ever issued was presented posthumously to a New York fireman. Just input information from your family tree, and you’ll receive a document certifying that you indeed have Irish heritage. It’s even signed by the Irish Minister of Foreign Affairs. That’ll beat your “Kiss Me I’m Irish” shirt any day!
You can see some other people who have Certificates, from Presidents to everyday folk, from all over the world.
Sharing your heritage
For brothers and sisters, children and grandchildren, you can share your own Irish Heritage with them. Of course, it may be your partner who is Irish and you’ll know how much that part of their life means to them. The Irish Government enables you to obtain Certificates of Irish Heritagefor your family, and give it as a gift. The final product is a bit of a looker; unique and personalized to every person who receives one, and signed by the Government of Ireland. Can you really say that your sitting room wall wouldn’t look better with one of these hanging on it? Thought not...