East Galway RootsWest Galway Roots

Church Records

St Josephs, Presentation Road, Galway City.

In general, church and state records of births/baptisms, marriages and deaths are the most valuable sources used in the compilation of family histories. However major differences can occur between the state and church records which are discussed within the Issues section.

Generally Roman Catholic Church records do not chronicle as much information as State records. The majority of church registers maintained in the nineteenth century were recorded in Latin. Depending on the parish, the records may contain some of the following information:

  • Baptismal records can include: the parish; born and baptismal dates; the child’s name; parents’ names – including the mother’s maiden name; father’s occupation; sponsors’ names; priest and comment. From research experience, sponsors tended to be either relatives or neighbours.
  • In general, church records of marriage contain details regarding the date of marriage; the name of the bride and groom and the names of the witnesses.
  • Death records document: the date of death; date of burial; deceased name; age; status and address; deceased father’s and mother’s names; spouse; priest and comment.

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