Ireland, Calendar of Wills and Administrations (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records scheduled to become available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Collection Time Period

The collection covers the years 1858 to 1920.

Record Description

This project is part of an agreement with the National Archives of Ireland. FamilySearch is responsible for creating an index to these records.

Record Content

Each record contains a summary of the will and probate information, which includes the following:

  • Name of the deceased
  • Address
  • Occupation
  • Beneficiaries
  • Date of death
  • Value of the estate
  • Birth information

How to Use the Record

To begin your search it is helpful to know:

  • The name of the deceased
  • The place of residence
  • The approximate death or probate date


Compare the information you find in the records to what you already know about your ancestors to determine which record is about your ancestor. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination.

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family.

For example:

  • Use the information in the probate record to substitute for civil birth and death records since the probates exist for an earlier time period.
  • Use the birth date along with the residence or place of birth of the deceased to locate census and church records.
  • Use the occupations listed to find other types of records such as employment records or military records.
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname as the deceased; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have died in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.


Keep in mind:

  • The information in the records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the deceased or the testator.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after 1900.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one record to another record.


If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Search the records of nearby towns.

Record History

Ireland began publishing an annual will calendar beginning in 1858.

Why the Record Was Created

The records were created by the Probate Registry, which took control of proving wills and administrations in 1858. Before this, four different types of ecclesiastical (church) courts dealt with these cases. A Principal Probate Registry was established in London in January 1858, and several district probate registries were created around the country. From then on, the registries oversaw all grants of probate and letters of administration. This collection is the Calendar of these grants.

Record Reliability

The information is generally reliable.

Related Websites

Related Wiki Articles

Ireland Probate Records

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.


Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.

Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection

  • “Delaware Marriage Records,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 4 March 2011), entry for William Anderson and Elizabeth Baynard Henry, married 23 November 1913; citing marriage certificate no. 859; FHL microfilm 2,025,063; Delaware Bureau of Archives and Records Management, Dover.
  • “El Salvador Civil Registration,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 21 March 2011), entry for Jose Maria Antonio del Carmen, born 9 April 1880; citing La Libertad, San Juan Opico, Nacimientos 1879-1893, image 50; Ministerio Archivo Civil de la Alcaldia Municipal de San Salvador.

Sources of information for This Collection

"Ireland, Calendar of Wills and Administrations, 1858-1920." FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org). National Archives of Ireland (Irish: Cartlann Náisiúnta na hÉireann), Dublin, Ireland. FHL microfilm, 46 reels. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.

The suggested format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections is found in the following article: How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections.


 

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