Click on the sidebar at right to find direct links to the twenty editions of the carnival on various topics related to Irish heritage and the search for Irish family history. They are hosted on several different blogs and each boasts links to an assortment of articles by various contributing authors.
After twenty editions, the carnival is currently "on holiday". Subscribe to this blog to receive announcements about future editions. Thanks for visiting!
Stowing Away for the "on sabbatical" photograph.
Now, twenty editions later, we'll be revisiting that same theme: Irish Stories. Everyone loves a good story. Got an Irish one that you can share with us for the carnival? Show us that you've got the gift of gab - tell us a good story! Here are the details:
Of all of the colorful Irish characters that you've learned about throughout your search for family history or your study of Irish heritage in general, surely you've come across some good stories. Share your favorite one about an Irish ancestor or other Irishman or Irishwoman with us for the 21st edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture.Deadline for submissions to the Irish Stories 21st edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture is Sunday, August 22, 2010. This edition will be published at Small-leaved Shamrock. See you there!
The 17th edition of the carnival has been posted. You can find "Show and tell": Irish genealogical treasures over at Small-leaved Shamrock.
Don't forget to join us for the upcoming 18th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture, also known as the 3rd annual Small-leaved Shamrock St. Patrick's Day Parade of Posts. The topic is anything and everything Irish, so come join in the fun whether or not you have Irish roots! The deadline is Sunday, March 14, 2009. The carnival will be published on St. Patrick's Day, March 17. For more details, visit Upcoming 18th Edition: Our 3rd annual St. Patrick's Day parade! See you there!
Look for the 17th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture to be posted this Thursday, January 7. See you there!
Genealogists are treasure hunters of a different kind. Instead of searching for riches, we dig for information. Instead of prizing gold, we value documents - the visual proof of the life stories of families that have passed before us.
Share with us the image of and the story behind a document (or documents) that have been valuable to you during your search for an Irish branch of your family. How and where did you find these documents? What are their significance to your research and/or why are they special to you? Here's your chance to show off some of your genealogical "loot" at our online "show and tell".
Deadline for submissions to the Genealogy treasure "show and tell" edition of the carnival is Sunday, January 3, 2010. This edition will be published at Small-leaved Shamrock on Thursday, January 7, 2010 .
Genealogists - get ready to show us your stuff at the upcoming show and tell carnival!
Also please plan to join us for the upcoming 17th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. The topic will be Genealogy treasure "show and tell". For details visit Upcoming 17th edition: Genealogy treasure "show and tell" here on the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture blog. Deadline for this upcoming edition is January 3, 2010. Hope to see you there!
Share with us a story about an Irishman or Irishwoman within your family tree. If you have a photograph of the ancestor, share it along with the story of their life (or a small and interesting portion of their life story). If you don't have a family member to write about, choose someone with Irish heritage and share their story.
Deadline for submissions to the Irish Portraits edition of the carnival is Sunday, November 1, 2009. This edition will be published at Small-leaved Shamrock on Wednesday, November 4, 2009 .
Looking forward to reading your stories at the next carnival!
Also plan to join us for the upcoming edition 16th of the carnival: Irish Portraits (deadline November 1, 2009). I'm looking forward to reading your story about an Irishman or Irishwoman at our next carnival!
Submissions have been much lighter than usual. I'm not sure whether that is due to my recent lack of time in the blogosphere (I haven't sent out as many reminders as I usually do) or due to the problem with the submission feature for this edition. Either way, there is still time for you to join us by submitting your entry.
Re-read the details or just send in your submission. Hope to see you there!
Ireland has a long tradition of literature, both in the Irish and English languages. In fact, after Greek and Latin, the Irish language itself has the oldest literature in Europe. The land is known for both its ancient bards and its more modern poetry and epic works of fiction. Today there are also innumerable non-fiction books touching on subjects related to Irish history and culture.
In the hope that you have some time on your hands this summer to do a little reading, here is a challenge for you:
Read a book of Irish fiction, a selection of Irish poetry or a work of non-fiction about Irish history and/or culture, and share it with us for the 15th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture: the 2nd Annual Small-leaved Shamrock Summer Reading Challenge. Submissions are due Sunday, August 30, 2009. The carnival will be published Wednesday, September 2, 2009.If you don't have a blog of your own, read along with us and share your "book reviews" by leaving a comment.
If you'd like to get some ideas for reading material, check out the carnival resulting from our first Small-leaved Shamrock Summer Reading Challenge last year: Looking into the heart of Ireland.
Hope you'll join us! Better get off to the bookstore or the library and make your summer reading selections right away!
Don't forget: While you're getting started on your reading for the 15th edition, don't forget to join us for the 14th edition of the carnival on Irish Vacations. The deadline for that edition has been changed to Sunday, July 26, 2009. Details can be found at Upcoming 14th edition: Let's go to Ireland! Irish Vacations here on the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture blog.
Summer is the time for vacations – going on adventures and visiting new places. The upcoming edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture will focus on Irish vacations. Share with us vacation spots you’ve visited (in Ireland or places with an Irish flavor) and your photos and memories from those vacations. If you don’t have a particular vacation you’d like to share, tell us about the Irish place where you would like to go if you had the chance.
This beautiful photograph of Nendrum Abbey in County Down is courtesy of Jordan McClements.
Deadline for submissions to the Irish Vacations edition of the carnival has been changed. It is now Sunday, July 26, 2009. This edition will be published by Colleen Degnan Johnson on her blog CMJ Office on Wednesday, July 29, 2009.
Looking forward to going places with you at our next carnival! Happy traveling!
Don't forget: While you're working on your submission for the 14th edition, don't forget to begin your summer reading so you can join us for the 15th edition of the carnival: the 2nd Annual Small-leaved Shamrock Summer Reading Challenge. The deadline for that edition is August 30, 2009. Details can be found at Upcoming 15th edition: 2nd Annual Small-leaved Shamrock Summer Reading Challenge on the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture blog.
- 14th edition: Irish Vacations (deadline July 10, 2009) hosted by Colleen Degnan Johnson
- 15th edition: The 2nd Annual Small-leaved Shamrock Summer Reading Challenge (deadline August 30, 2009)
Share with us the surnames in your Irish family tree, but don't just stop there. Do a little research and tell us the origin of one or more of those surnames, the stories of how they might have changed over the years, or tales of how they've been mixed up and mispelled, etc.
Want to focus on your family's given names instead? Share with us the story of your ancestors' Irish first names (given at birth or nicknamed later), the "grandparent" nicknames in your Irish family tree, or any other Irish name stories that you'd like to share.
Deadline for submissions to the Irish Names edition of the carnival is Sunday, May 24, 2009. This edition will be published at Small-leaved Shamrock on Wednesday, May 27, 2009 .
Looking forward to calling you by name at our next carnival!
A special feature of this edition is the interactive map created by Thomas MacEntee of Destination Austin Family. He has embedded links to each of our contributors' ancestral counties and/or villages within a Google Maps map of Ireland. Use the map below right now to find an area of Ireland that interests you, or come back to the map after you've read through the carnival's submissions for a visual summary of this edition.
View Larger Map
If you have trouble viewing this interactive map here for some reason, you can use this direct link to the carnival's My Key to Ireland map on the Google Maps website.
Special thanks to Thomas for creating this map. If you want to know how he did it, visit Thomas' article at the Facebook Bootcamp for Genea-Bloggers blog entitled Google Maps and Carnival Posts. Two of this edition's contributors, Donna and Julie, have also written about similar ways to use Google Maps.
Now, for the stories of our carnival's contributors... Enjoy your tour of Ireland!
Professional genealogist Donna Moughty can be found at Donna's Genealogy Blog. Her article My First Trip to Ireland details the story of she and her daughter's visit to Ireland and search for Moughty family records. In humorous fashion, she tells of her struggles with getting acquainted with Ireland, driving roundabouts, and spending two hours to get a "reader card" only to learn that she would not be able to find the records she was looking for at the National Library of Ireland but would have to go elsewhere. Her story is a reminder to all of us that we must "do our homework" before we can have success in Irish genealogy. It is also a reminder that details are important: the village she thought her family hailed from was only six miles away from the correct village (Aughnaboy in County Westmeath), but was actually in a different civil parish, registration district, and barony. Visit Donna's blog for encouragement in your search and for some Irish genealogy links to assist you in your efforts.
Geniaus shared the story of how a priest and a post office clerk in the tiny Irish villages of Ballyfoyle and Muckalee in County Kilkenny were able to give her access to family records and also directions to her ancestral home. Read My Key to Ireland to learn her story and view a photo of the home that is still in the family after over two-hundred years, complete with a table made by her great-great-grandfather.
Olive Tree Genealogy Blog is one of the online homes of Lorine McGinnis Schulze. In her article Carnival of Irish Heritage: My Key to Ireland, Lorine describes her quest for her McGinnis family and how she narrowed down her ancestral village to Katesbridge in County Down thanks to her brother's DNA test and the handwriting on the back of a family photograph. For more details on Lorine's Irish family tree, you might also enjoy reading Tracking the Elusive Fanny Downey McGinnis.
Not new to genealogy, but new to the search for the Irish roots in her family, Cindy of Everything's Relative found the 1911 British Census records (newly placed online) were a help in tracing her ancestors back to their Irish birthplaces in counties Fermanagh and Mayo, and the town of Drogheda in County Louth. Visit Where in the world is Drogheda? for a glimpse at Cindy's discoveries about her 3rd-great-grandparents using the census and the Family Search website.
Kathy Brady-Blake of Kathy's Genealogy Blog has many branches of her family with Irish roots. In My Keys to Ireland she details how she discovered her Bestick, McSorley, Whelan, Markey and Brady family origins in Counties Kilkenny, Longford, Meath, Tyrone and possibly Mayo, and the steps she has taken to confirm these findings with evidence. I especially liked the description one of Kathy's cousins gave to her regarding the ancestral village of her Whelan branch: "County Meath near the River Boyne, five miles from the sea." Wouldn't it be fun to go hunt down that little village?
The Educated Genealogist Sheri Fenley tells us the story of her 3rd-great-grandfather and her search for he and his wife's origins in Ireland at Daniel Derondo Delaney and My Key to Ireland. She discovered that they hailed from County Kerry and County Cork. Interestingly enough, after searching elsewhere for the information, Sheri finally found that Daniel's birth and marriage data were already residing in her files, and were written in Daniel's own handwriting! Read Sheri's article for the story of how she found her family's ancestral village of Buttevant, County Cork. You'll also enjoy the saga of Daniel's shortlived career as a Union soldier.
Since Colleen Degnan Johnson's heritage is almost purely Irish, she has much to talk about when it comes to Irish roots. In My Keys to Ireland at CMJ Office Blog she writes about her Degnan, Galvin, Finnegan/Finegan, Clune and Donahue ancestors from Counties Longford, Cork, Clare, Monaghan and Mayo. Close to her heart is the childhood home of her grandmother, which Colleen was able to visit, just down the road from the cliffs of Moher and Lahinch in Clouna, Russa and Cullenagh. A tip from Colleen for discovering clues to your family's ancestral homes in Ireland: she highly recommends ship and naturalization records. They have played a large role in her research.
Kathryn Kahumoku resides online at the blog entitled For My Ancestors. Kathryn's father was born and raised in County Leitrim and only emigrated after his daughter was born, so Kathryn had much verbal family history to get her started on her quest for her ancestors. In her article My Key to Ireland, she details the counties and parishes where she has found records for her ancestors, including the parishes of Aughavas and Cloone-Clonmaicne in County Leitrim (her Kiernan family), and the parishes of Abbeyleix, Aghaboe, Durrow and Mountmellick in County Laois (Nolan, Muldowney, Horan and Connor families). You'll enjoy viewing the maps that Kathryn has created highlighting the location of each of her families' parishes. Kathryn reminds us not to forget reading local histories. She made a fascinating discovery about her grandfather and his brother (and their time as prisoners in 1921) by reading one such book. Kathryn thinks that she has exhausted all the records available to her (without making a trip to Dublin, that is) and is hoping for more records to be made available online or through her local Family History Library. While you're visiting For My Ancestors, check out Kathryn's list of online Irish resources on her links page.
As is appropriate for a Graveyard Rabbit, M. Diane Rogers has told the story of her ancestors using photos and information about a gravemarker on her blog The Graveyard Rabbit of British Columbia, Canada. Diane began her search for Irish roots after a trip to Ireland where she and her mother made "an obligatory wave to the family roots" without much knowledge about them. Once back home she began her research into her Irwin and Moffat families and eventually found roots in County Cavan, instead of County Armagh, which she had originally thought in error. Visit Irwin and Moffat: County Cavan for Diane's story about her search for Irish roots and her discovery of the grave of James and Mary Jane Moffatt Irwin in Neepawa, Manitoba, Canada. Diane's tip for Irish researchers: "Always look for collateral relatives, especially brothers and sisters of your direct ancestors."
Sharing wonderful portraits of her great-great-grandparents that many of us will envy, Paula Ausmus Moore tells about the Irish roots in her family tree at her blog A Passage in Time. With family hailing from Counties Cork (her Kirwin line) and Roscommon (her Noonan family - or is it Noon?), Paula plans to continue her search for the origins of her Irish ancestors who immigrated to Chicago, Illinois in the mid-19th-century. Read more at Paula's My Key to Ireland.
Julie Cahill Tarr has found two of her family ancestral counties in Ireland (Kilkenny and Tipperary), but still has more work to do to find specific locations. Read Finding My Irish Roots at GenBlog for details about how Julie found those counties and her plans for further Irish research.
In My Key to Ireland: Unlocking Family Mysteries Thomas MacEntee of Destination Austin Family introduces us to the area in Ireland where cousins tell him that his family hails from: County Monaghan. Like many of us, he has more research to do in order to get further details about his family. Read Thomas' blog for an introduction to the McEntee/MacEntee surname and his family's Irish roots.
Bill West of West in New England writes out his detailed plans to search for information about his two great-grandfathers with probable Irish heritage. Using city employment records, Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority records, and Boston Archdiocese Archives records he hopes to find the keys to "open the door" to his Irish roots. Visit Bill's article: My Keys to Ireland.
Jessica Oswalt of Jessica's Genejournal describes her discovery of a Scottish birth certificate that gave information about the previous generations' birthplaces in Ballymena, County Antrim. On her blog she explains her plans to seek out information about her Scotch-Irish great-grandfather's family at My Scotch-Irish Ancestors: My Key To Ireland?.
I've shared my personal discovery of my great-great-grandfather's birth in County Tipperary on my blog A light that shines again. After celebrating my Irish heritage for as long as I can remember, it was a happy moment to finally be able to pinpoint Tipperary as the place of my ancestral roots. At In search of Irish roots: A long and winding road I explain what finally led me to Patrick Tierney's birthplace and list the other branches of the family that need my attention before I can make that long-awaited trip to Ireland.
For help with getting started finding your own Irish roots, you might enjoy Getting to the roots of your Irish family tree, Part 1 here at Small-leaved Shamrock. This first installment focuses on finding the county of your ancestors in Ireland. The second part, Getting to the roots of your Irish family tree, Part 2, focuses on searching for more specific information: villages, parishes and townlands in Ireland. You might also benefit from a refresher course in Irish geography. Visit Irish Geography 101 over at A light that shines again for a little review (or an introduction if you're new to research within the Emerald Isle).
Join us for the parade!
No matter how your Irish research is going (or even if you have no Irish roots to speak of), please plan to join us for the upcoming 12th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. This will be our 2nd annual St. Patrick's Day parade edition and if last year's is any indication, it will be loads of fun. Come one, come all - Irish roots or not! All you need is an appreciation of Ireland and its culture. Read details at the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture blog: Join us for a St. Patrick's Day online parade!
Image thanks to kaboodle.
If you have found your ancestral county or village in Ireland, just how did you find your way there? What resources led you to learn the original county or townland or your ancestors? Tell us how you did it and what your feelings were when you made the exciting discovery.
If you have not yet found the area where your ancestors made their homes in Ireland, tell us about the resources that you hope to use to find out. What records and documents do you hope will lead you to that information? How do you plan to go about the search?
If you have always known the place or places where your family hailed from, tell us about them. What draws you there and what else have you learned throughout your search for family history?Share with us your Irish genealogy success story or your plans to "get back to Ireland" within the upcoming 11th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture.
Deadline for submissions to the My key to Ireland edition is Sunday, January 18, 2009. This edition will be published at Small-leaved Shamrock on Tuesday, January 20, 2009 . Have a wonderful holiday season and we'll see you at next year's first Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture.
Image thanks to kaboodle.
Welcome to the 10th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture - our 1st anniversary edition! If you've been a contributor to the carnival over the past year, thank you for sharing your appreciation for Ireland and the Irish with all of us. If you are a reader, thank you for visiting and being part of the fun.
Without any further ado, let's get on with this 10th edition of the carnival. This time we have a special focus on the aspects of Irish culture and tradition that are beloved to each of us.
We'll start our focus on Irish culture with a look at Irish literature. According to William Morgan, Ireland "has produced so many great writers over so many generations whose works both transcend time and push the boundaries of the written word as an artform." Visit William's post For the love of Ireland posted at The sock in the dryer for a list of the Irish literary "geniuses" whose work he admires.
Bill West of West in New England shares with us his "first love of Irish culture": the mythology of Ireland. In his Irish Myths Bill introduces us to a few of his favorites. According to this self-proclaimed lover of the mythology of many cultures, "The Irish epic myths are beautifully lyrical works and reflect, I think, that love of language that runs through all of Irish literature and song."
Speaking of Irish song, visit Tipper's Blind Pig & The Acorn for a little history lesson on the Irish favorite O Danny Boy. She says, "When I think of the longevity of the song, it seems fitting that O Danny Boy started in Ireland hundreds of years ago, came to America, went to England and then on to the world." Visit her blog to see why she feels this Irish song appeals to so many people worldwide.
With ancestry from counties Kilkenny, Longford, Meath and Tyrone, Kathy Brady-Blake has plenty of Irish heritage in her genes. It's no wonder that she discovered a love for Celtic music. Visit her article For the Love of Ireland at Kathy's Genealogy Blog to read about the wide variety of Irish music that she enjoys and a specific annual opportunity for other Irish music fans in Milwaukee.Speaking of Irish musicians, Kate of Kate's Family Tree shares one of her favorite songs with us via music video performed by two modern Irish rock musicians. Visit Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture, 10th Edition for her submission to our carnival.
Irish DanceThose of us that love Celtic music can't help but tap our toes to the sound of it. Take that a few steps further, and you find yourself trying your hand an Irish jig. My family has taken Irish dance seriously - we truly love the dance of Ireland as it has evolved into its modern day form. Visit my article Irish dance: "The merry love the fiddle..." here at Small-leaved Shamrock for a look at one of my favorite aspects of Irish culture and a peek at a book I've created for young dancers.
Irish LinenFor this edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture, Apple gives us an introduction to beautiful Irish linen. She has presented a thorough guide to this beloved type of traditional Irish craft that has been handed down through the centuries. Read the article about Irish Linen posted at Apple's Tree for more about this beautiful treasure of Ireland, including some links, images and Apple's favorite Irish proverb (her first project done on Irish linen).
More Beloved Irish Culture
Two well-known Irish symbols are the focus of Elizabeth O'Neal's For the Love of Crosses and Claddaghs. She says, “Call me corny, but my two favorite Irish symbols are the Claddagh and the Celtic cross.” Many of us would have to agree with you, Elizabeth. Visit Little Bytes of Life for a personal look at these beloved symbols and some background on the history and meaning of each.
Kathryn of The Kahumoku Ohana made a list of the top fourteen things she loves about Irish culture for her first submission to the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. Visit her post For The Love Of Ireland for her favorites, which include traditional items such as Irish soda bread and Yeats' poetry, but also Irish peat and banshees!Dorene Paul of the Sandusky, Ohio Library shares with us the stories of several individuals with Irish heritage. In The Irish in Erie County posted at Sandusky History she tells us the story of some of her local area's more famous Irish residents and the impact they each had on Sandusky. Dorene says, "While this entry is about the Irish who resided in Erie County, I recall the stories of folks telling stories and getting a bit intoxicated at the wake, following the death of a loved one."
In pondering the aspects of Irish culture that she loves, Colleen Johnson, a descendant of fairly recent Irish immigrants and one who has traveled to visit her cousins who remain there, asked herself, "What don't I love about the Irish culture?" Read For the Love of Ireland posted at Colleen's blog for more about her appreciation of the friendliness of the Irish people, their love for storytelling (even when asked to give directions), and the way that "heritage and religion mesh and become one". As Colleen writes, "With a wave and a smile, travel through Ireland and you will never be far from one."
I know that our contributors have only touched on a few of the many aspects of Irish culture that are loved by people the world over. Thanks for reading this 10th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. For information about the upcoming 11th edition, please visit the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture blog for details about the upcoming topic: My key to Ireland.
Images of Ireland courtesy of Jordan McClements.
Irish culture is loved worldwide. It is no secret that the love of Ireland is not exclusive to those with Irish blood running through their veins. For this edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture, Small-leaved Shamrock invites you (whether you have Irish heritage or not) to share what you most love about Ireland and the Irish people. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- The wit and wisdom of a particular Irish proverb that you've memorized
- The traditional Celtic song that you first heard in your youth (or that lives currently on your playlist)
- Irish soda bread from the neighborhood bakery
- The village in Ireland that you visited years ago (or on your last vacation)
- The beautiful Aran knit sweater that warms you on chilly days
- The writings of the Irish poets, modern and well-known or ancient and anonymous
- Anything of Ireland or the Irish that you enjoy
Deadline for submissions to the For the love of Ireland edition is Saturday, November 22nd, the one-year anniversary of the carnival. This edition will be published here at Small-leaved Shamrock on Monday, November 24. See you there!
Jessica over at Jessica's Genejournal tells about a "volume of forgotten lore" in her article "Irish Ghost Stories: A Book..." It seems this particular book gives Jessica a "creepy feeling." Read the article and find out why!
Melody Lassalle of The Research Journal gives us "Laughter and Superstition During An Earthquake". It's a story of her family in the San Francisco Earthquake that shows how strong a hold superstition sometimes has on a person.
Colleen M. Johnson presents "Do I Have Any Superstitions?" posted at cmjoffice.com Blog, saying, "Do I have any superstitions? Read on and discover some chills."
Thomas MacEntee presents A Wee Bit Superstitious posted at Destination: Austin Family, saying, "It is great to be back participating in this carnival!" And it's good to have you back, Thomas!
Lisa presents"Black cats, lucky pennies and troublesome fairy folk" at Small-leaved Shamrock saying, “Superstitious lot, those Irish! Small-leaved Shamrock takes a look at some of the concerns that many centuries of Irish people had to face on a daily basis.”
Elizabeth at Little Bytes of Life tells us about her family's list of superstitions which she thinks of as "rules-orientated". I grinned reading "The Bad Luck ofthe Irish" and I think you will, too!
Finally, my own Irish American family shared many of the same superstitions as our other geneabloggers' families did and I talk about the ones I can recall my Mom telling us in "Superstitions Our Mother Told Us" here at West in New England.
So that's it. I hope you enjoyed the 9th Edition of Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture. Please join us for the next edition. Here's what Lisa has to tell us about it:
"Irish culture is loved worldwide. It is no secret that the love of Ireland is not exclusive to those with Irish blood running through their veins. For this edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture, Small-leavedShamrock invites you (whether you have Irish heritage or not) to share what you most love about Ireland and the Irish people."
Check out Lisa's new Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture blog for all the details!
Say, is that a raven gently rapping, rapping at your chamber door?
This carnival was compiled and written by Bill West and originally published on October 31, 2008 at West in New England. It has reappeared here with his permission. Visit Luck of the Irish: 9th Edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture to see this edition as it was first published and to read additional comments.
The school bell is ringing for the 8th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. This is the "Back to School" edition, so get your pencils sharpened and put your thinking caps on as we scroll through the research plans and to do lists of others seeking to get a better grip on their Irish heritage and/or to learn a little more about the culture of
Why would you want to read through an assortment of other people's to-do lists? Why, it’s fascinating reading! (After all, there is even a popular blog that is devoted solely to To-Do Lists.)
Let me give you a few reasons why you might want to spend time reading through the assortment of to-do lists and itemized Irish genealogy plans that make up this edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture:
- To be inspired in your own research by seeing what others are trying to accomplish
- To gather ideas for your own research and/or gain interesting perspectives on the quest for your personal family history
- To be introduced to resources you might not be aware of
- To help keep these family historians accountable to the goals that they have set
If you are working on your own to-do list of Irish genealogy and family history tasks and don't currently manage a blog of your own, please use the comment section at the end of this article to share your goals. We hope you’ll join us: the more the merrier!
The bell has rung and it’s time to begin, so without any further ado let’s get on task and scroll through our submissions.
Colleen Johnson is on a mission to seek out her roots in
Apple’s search for her Irish ancestry takes her back to Ireland during the 18th-century. She plans to work further back in her family tree on the following lines: Carlisle (of Massachusetts), Graham (of Virginia) and Kelly (of New York and Ontario). She will also focus on learning about the history of
First-time carnival contributor Melody LaSalle is not new to Irish genealogy. She has done much research in the past on her family tree, but still finds that she is stumped on several lines. As Melody puts it, she “has her work cut out for her”. When she found herself at a “brick wall” in the past for one particular family member, her approach was to search for every known document for that person. Her persistence paid off when she discovered a probate file with the names of many family members from various branches. Check out Melody’s plans to search for information on her elusive Kelly and Dolan ancestors of
Julie Cahill Tarr is another first-time contributor to our carnival. Her quest is to find the home county in
Bill West of West in New England shares his goals at "BACK TO SCHOOL" ON MY IRISH GENEALOGY. He is focusing on searching for information about one couple in his family tree: John & Anna (Kelley) McFarland. Bill hopes to learn about his great-grandparents using archived newspapers, passenger lists, vital records, employment records, and records from the Archives of the Archdiocese of Boston when they open again in 2009. He also plans to contact some older relatives in the family for more information.
Her Scotch-Irish branch of the family is one line that Jessica Oswalt has not yet focused on since she began writing about her personal search for family history at Jessica's Genejournal. She plans to familiarize herself with Scottish and Irish records and use the British census along with probate, vital and other records to pinpoint her family’s history in the
A collection of family photographs dating from 1850 is the focus of M. Diane Rogers’ project related to her Irish genealogy. At CanadaGenealogy, or, Jane’s Your Aunt she writes IRWIN and MOFFAT, County Cavan, Ireland - 8th Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture and shares a beautiful portrait of James and Mary Ann (Moffat) Irwin who immigrated from County Cavan, Ireland to western Canada. Diane plans to scan and organize all of the photos in her collection related to this couple and their descendants. She shares a book written by a relative on the history of the Irwin family and provides a nice list of links relating to
Donna Pointkouski found that in doing research for others on their 19th-century Irish immigrant ancestors she may have found a more difficult type of “genealogy coursework” than that of researching her more recent immigrant ancestors of the early 20th-century. She has worked back through several generations of her niece’s Irish ancestors in
When lost in the assortment of notes, documents, and other family history information that I've accumulated, I've found that the best way to refocus has been to create a family timeline for the ancestral branch that troubles me. That is at the top of my priority list as I revisit some of my Irish family lines that have been elusive lately. Visit Filling in the gaps on the Irish side of my family tree here at Small-leaved Shamrock for an introduction to my search for the Cowhey, Foley and Donnelly families of Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.
I often receive carnival submissions that are not quite within the realm of the topic covered by the current edition. They are sometimes items that I’m interested in sharing, but because they don’t fit with the theme, I have chosen not to include them in the past.
This month, since the scope of our "Back to School" edition has covered the “study” of all aspects of Irish heritage and culture, I’ll include the additional submissions that I received on Irish topics.
Smoky Mountain Family Historian Lori presents a review of a children’s book dealing with an Irish family’s heritage in Review: St. Patrick's Day Shillelagh. She suggests it as a reminder to families to tell their own stories. I wholeheartedly agree.
Peter presents a gallery of photos he has taken on his travels by motorbike throughout
Kerry Dexter of Music Road shares the story of Cathie Ryan: Irish and American. The daughter of Irish immigrants living in Michigan, Cathie's love for Celtic music eventually led her back to Ireland. Cathie is a singer and songwriter (the lead singer for Cherish the Ladies) and as Kerry puts it, "builds bridges between Ireland and America, between past and present, and between the stuff of daily life and the spiritual and emotional dimensions that give that day to day another dimension".
Thanks for reading this, the 8th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. We hope it has inspired you to join the class and get to work on your personal Irish heritage & culture coursework!
For a little fun and a break from your serious studies, plan to join us for the upcoming 9th edition to be hosted by Bill West. See The luck of the Irish: Superstitions and the Irish people for details.This carnival was originally published on July 28, 2008 at Small-leaved Shamrock. Visit Top of the class: Family historians set goals for Irish research to see this edition as it was first published and to read additional comments.
As the deadline for this 7th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture began to draw near, I was beginning to wonder why I'd gotten the bright idea to suggest a "reading assignment" during the lazy (yet, sometimes busy) days of summer. A few entries had trickled in, but it didn't look like the carnival would be much of a carnival at all. (After all, who ever heard of a carnival with only one or two attendees?)
It turned out that many of you, like students procrastinating on their homework assignments, were working hard to finish your reading material just in time for the due date. Thanks to all who squeaked your entries in at the last minute, we have a carnival...and quite a carnival it is!
From fiction to poetry, history to genealogy and memoir, adult reading to books for young people, the Small-leaved Shamrock summer reading challenge has resulted in a wonderful assortment of book "reviews" written by a variety of writers.
Now, without further ado, I'll share with you an assortment of reading material on Ireland and the Irish. Join with me as we "return to Ireland" through literature, poetry, history and more.
"I returned to Ireland. Ireland green and chaste and foolish. And when I wandered over my own hills and talked again to my own people I looked into the heart of this life and saw that it was good." ~ Patrick Kavanagh, The Green Fool
The Silence in the Garden is the name of a work of fiction introduced to us by Lori Thornton of Smoky Mountain Family Historian. It is a story set in 20th-century County Cork. The novel has a strong focus on genealogy and its plot involves a family secret, a death and a diary. According to Lori, William Trevor's book is a well-written novel and an interesting look at Ireland's religious conflict and various aspects of Irish culture.
"There is only one admirable form of the imagination: the imagination that is so intense that it creates a new reality, that it makes things happen."
~ Sean O’Faolain
A 7th-century nun living in Ireland? It's not too surprising to find that type of character. What about a 7th-century Irish nun who is also a detective? Bill West of West in New England shares with us The Sister Fidelma Mysteries written by Peter Tremayne. Bill shares how this series of more than twenty books gives us a look into the relationship between the Celtic and Anglo cultures along with the relatively independent role that women played in Ireland even long ago. Read his post to learn more about Sister Fidelma's adventures as a dálaigh aiding her brother, the King of Cashel.
Donna Pointkouski of What's Past is Prologue writes a nice inroduction to Pete Hamill's Forever within her post on an Irish history book (I'll describe the history book a little later in the carnival). The beginning of the story is set in 18th-century Ireland. The main character Cormac O'Connor immigrates to New York City and, fantastically, finds a secret akin to the fountain of youth.
~ Seamus Heaney
A carnival on Irish literature would not be complete without some Irish poetry. Colleen Johnson gives us a taste of one of her favorite poets (and one of Ireland's most famous), W.B. Yeats, in her post Peace by Yeats. Speaking of Yeats, you might also enjoy visiting the current online exhibition The Life and Works of William Butler Yeats presented by The National Library of Ireland.
For a sampling of works by a couple of well-known modern Irish poets read Colm Doyle's post Mahon & Heaney at The Corcaighist. He shares with us his favorite lines from an assortment of poems. Colm writes, "These two men both speak with the same tongue, albeit in slightly separate positions, and you get an appreciation for Ireland and the Irish, whatever be their background and history."
Want to delve further back into the history of Irish poetry? Visit my post On bards and beautiful words here at Small-leaved Shamrock for an introduction to one of my favorite Irish poetry reference works. Believe it or not, it takes the reader on a journey through 1,000 years of Irish poetic history, including many types of forms written by many types of Irish poets (including the well-known writer Anonymous).
One of the ways to aid the discovery of elusive branches in your family history is to just dedicate yourself to the search with good old-fashioned perseverance. I enjoy Samuel Beckett's suggestion to keep trying in the hopes of "failing better". That is my experience with my search for one of my Irish family surnames in particular. My success was aided by several books written by one author that I share on Small-leaved Shamrock within the post What's in an Irish surname? If you are doing Irish genealogy and are not familiar with Edward MacLysaght, now's the time to get acquainted.
While we're on the subject of Irish genealogy, take a visit over to the Irish Family History blog's review of Tracing Your Irish Ancestors by John Grenham. The author gives a very good overview of this book that is indispensible when doing family history research in Ireland.
"When anyone asks me about the Irish character, I say look at the trees. Maimed, stark and misshapen, but ferociously tenacious.”
Another good memoir is the story of Thomas Lynch and his search for roots in Ireland. Loretta Murphy of The Creek introduces us to Booking Passage: We Irish and Americans and makes the observation: "Climbing the branches of our family tree, we grasp the hands of those who came before us, trying to reach the top to catch a glimpse of that past from which we became the future." As Loretta shares in Never Forget..., Thomas, a descendant of Irish-American immigrants, not only "grasps the hands of those who came before [him]" but gets to know several present-day relatives still living in Ireland. Unbelievably, he eventually finds himself the custodian of the family's ancestral home back in Ireland.
Going back in time to the fall of the Roman Empire, Thomas Cahill begins to tell the story of How the Irish Saved Civilization. Donna Pointkouski enjoyed his historical look at Ireland from Roman to Medieval times. Thomas Cahill writes about the impact of the work of the Celtic monks on European history, according to Donna, in a fascinating way. Read her post to learn more about this book and others in Cahill's "Hinges of History" series. I especially like a quote that Donna chose from this book that rings true of many of our immigrant ancestors.
A Book On The History of Ireland: A Reader's Thoughts Partway Through The Book is Jessica Oswalt's post about her reading of Modern Ireland, 1600-1972 by R. F. Foster. Jessica gives a brief overview of this survey of Irish history, commenting that she feels the need for a less daunting history of Ireland in order to better understand this more complex work. A few suggestions for Jessica and others who might want another angle on Irish history:
- Fianna's A Timeline of Irish History webpage on Rootsweb
- Wesley Johnston & Patrick Abbot's Travel Through the Ireland Story website (which uses maps to illustrate Irish history)
- The Oxford Companion to Irish History edited by S.J. Connolly - see its review on the Irish Family History blog
For young people
Miriam Midkiff of AnceStories shares The Long March, the unlikely story of the Native American Choctaw people's attempt to send aid to the starving Irish during the famine in the middle 19th-century. According to Miriam, the book is beautifully illustrated by the author and "an emotional experience" for the reader. Read Miriam's article to learn how the Irish thanked the Choctaw over a century later when "two great nations, both knowing suffering and starvation [were] bonded at a deeply emotional and spiritual level."
Also set during the time of the famine of the mid-19th-century is the story of Nory Ryan's Song by Patricia Reilly Giff. Read Song of Suffering on my blog A light that shines again for an introduction to this fictional story of the struggles of one young girl and her family to overcome starvation and survive one of the most trying times in the history of the Irish people. As I stated, this book is one of the most moving descriptions of Ireland's Great Famine that I have read.
In the mood for children's stories of Ireland that go back further into Irish history? You might enjoy an article written by Jerry Griswold, Director of San Diego State University's National Center for the Study of Children's Literature. Partly of Irish descent and having lived in Ireland for a time, Griswold shares a little background on Irish myth and legend and provides a suggested reading list for children within his article Ireland and Irish Children's Stories on the Parents' Choice website.
Thanks for joining us for this, the first Irish literature edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. I hope that you've found some new books to place on top of your reading pile and that you have some time left in your summer to pick up and read a few of these gems on Ireland and the Irish. In the mood for a little quiz after reading? Try the Irish Literature & Folklore Quiz.
Thanks to all of our contributors including those of you who, though you have not yet found any Irish heritage within your family tree, helped to enrich our carnival with your submissions.
If you liked what you read, you might enjoy the "back issues" of our Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture.
- 1st edition: Everyone loves a good Irish story - Stories of Ireland and the Irish
- 2nd edition: They say there's a pot of gold at the end of every rainbow... - A focus on Irish family history research
- 3rd edition: Off to Ireland! - Irish places, both in and out of Ireland
- 4th edition: A St. Patrick's Day parade of posts! - An assortment of posts on all things Irish in celebration of St. Patrick's Day 2008
- 5th edition: A little Irish language, a bit of Blarney... - A tribute to the Irish language
- 6th edition: The many faces of Irish identity - Contributors ponder the question, "What does it mean to be Irish?"
Thanks for reading this, the 7th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. Please plan to join us for the upcoming 8th edition. See Back to school for the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture! for the details. Get your school supplies ready now!
Images courtesy of Karen's Whimsy.This carnival was originally published on July 28, 2008 at Small-leaved Shamrock. Visit Looking into the heart of Ireland to see this edition as it was first published and to read additional comments.