East Galway RootsWest Galway Roots


irish family history

Welcome to Galway’s Premier Genealogical Website

The county of Galway lies on the west coast of Ireland and incorporates the city of Galway and notable towns including Athenry, Ballinasloe, Clifden, Gort, Loughrea, Oranmore, Portumna and Tuam.

The fourteen tribes of Galway city were merchant families who dominated the commercial, political and social life of the city of Galway between the 13th and 16th centuries.

These families included: Athy, Blake, Bodkin, Browne, D’Arcy, Deane, Ffont, Ffrench, Joyce, Kirwan, Lynch, Martin, Morris and Skerritt.

Historically the major Gaelic families of the county were O’Daly, O’Fallon, O’Flaherty, O’Halloran, O’Hynes, O’Kelly, O’Madden, O’Malley, O’Mullaly and O’Naughton.

The Great Famine of 1845 – 1849, which struck Ireland, had a catastrophic effect on the population of County Galway.  In 1841, the population of Galway stood at 440,198, ten years later, starvation and emigration prompted by the Famine had reduced this to 321,684.

The acute emigration which followed the Famine continued throughout the second half of the nineteenth century, reducing the population of the county to 214,712 by 1891.  Today, according to the latest CSO figures (2011) the population of Galway City and County is 250,653 individuals of which 75,529 reside in the City and the remaining 175,124 are resident throughout the county.

Tracing your ancestors can be a time consuming process, why not avail of the research services at either of Galway’s Genealogical Centres which are located in Woodford and Galway City respectively.  The  East Galway Family History Society which is based in Woodford is the designated research centre for the eastern part of county Galway whilst the Galway Family History Society West undertakes research for the western part of the county which includes Galway City, Connemara and the Islands.   The main sources both research companies utilise include:

  • Pre 1900 Church records of baptism, marriage and death.
  • Pre 1900 Civil/State records of birth, marriage and death.
  • 1901 and 1911 Censuses.
  • Griffith’s Valuation.
  • Tithe Applotment Books.

Additionally there are other sources available which are pertinent to both research centres and are listed accordingly within the Sources section for each company.

Both organisations are part of the Irish Family History Foundation’s (I.F.H.F.) network of nationwide Centres. The I.F.H.F. is an all Ireland ‘not for profit’ organisation that has been the coordinating body for county genealogy centres for over twenty five years.

If you do not know what county in Ireland your ancestors came from you can use the central website to search across all counties.  Each county centre has over several years created local databases comprised of various genealogical records and have come together in this unique central site that has to date approximately 20 million records online.

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