Findmypast, one of the leading family history sites, has today announced a joint venture with Eneclann, the award-winning Irish history and heritage company, to launch findmypast Ireland. The new site jointly owned by Eneclann and brightsolid, the online publishing and technology group, will host the most extensive collection of Irish land records available anywhere online and will be a valuable resource for those 80 million people worldwide who claim Irish ancestry.
Findmypast Ireland, which is aimed at those of Irish descent including 13 per cent of the US population, carries the most detailed and thorough collection of Irish records ever seen in one place including land records, directories, wills, obituaries, gravestone inscriptions and marriages. The earliest records date back to the 13th century (wills) and include several important collections from the 18th century (The Elphin Census 1749 and the 1798 Rebellion records). The collection includes the exclusive publication of the Landed Estates Court Records, a very important resource for the mid- to late-nineteenth century, which includes details of over 500,000 tenants on Irish estates.
Chris van der Kuyl, CEO brightsolid, comments: “The launch of findmypast.ie marks a significant step forward in reinforcing brightsolid’s position as one of the world’s leading genealogy businesses. Globally there is a huge population of people with Irish ancestry and this site will provide a much needed resource for those seeking to trace their family history. By stepping beyond the traditional records we intend to be able to answer the question “what did they do?” rather than just “did they exist?” and we are committed to launching over 50 million records over the next 12-18 months.”
Brian Donovan, CEO Eneclann, comments: “We are looking forward to working with brightsolid on this venture. With the combined expertise of Eneclann and brightsolid we are able to offer a truly comprehensive service to those looking to trace their Irish ancestors. Findmypast.ie will host some of the most significant Irish records that have ever been made available and we are thrilled to be part of this project.”
Congratulating the joint venture partners for making this website available, Jimmy Deenihan T.D., Minister of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, says: “The provision of easy access to as many genealogical records as possible is very important. I want to acknowledge also the involvement of the Mormon Church. I am confident that this project will help to bring to life how our ancestors lived. Indeed, I am particularly pleased that the ‘free access’ principle will be maintained for important State records after the initial 5 year period and I applaud the very interesting and creative partnership that enabled today’s event to take place. ”
The joint venture will explore a range of opportunities within the Irish cultural sector, North and South. Annual subscriptions for the site will be €59.95 and PayAsYouGo will be available. An event will be held to celebrate the launch of findmypast Ireland on 5 May 2011 at the National Archives of Ireland, which will be attended by Jimmy Deenihan, Minister for Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht Affairs. Findmypast Ireland has set up a separate team in Dublin to work with Eneclann to develop the site.