Latest News

The latest news from the North of Ireland Family History Society.

Family History Fair and Family Tree DNA Event

Ballymena Family History Fair and FTDNA EventThe Committee of the NIFHS Ballymena Branch invites you to their

“Family History Fair and Family Tree DNA Event”
at The Braid, Ballymena Town Hall,
on Saturday 2nd September 2017
from 11 am to 4 pm.

We would also like to extend this invitation to your friends and family.

This free event is open to everyone – from beginners to experienced family historians – to discuss their family history research with a wide range of genealogy experts.

The event is generously sponsored by Family Tree DNA (FTDNA).
DNA testing information will be available from Maggie Lyttle and Martin McDowell who are the administrators of the FTDNA-NIFHS Project Group.
Among those who are expected to be at The Braid to help you in your research are:

  • Family and Local Local History Societies
  • Irish Origenes
  • United Irishmen
  • Public Record Office of Northern Ireland
  • Presbyterian Historical Society
  • Eddies Extracts
  • Mid-Antrim Friends of the Somme Association
  • Maghera Historical Society

Raffle prizes are available which include:

  • a FTDNA Autosomal test
  • a year’s membership of the NIFHS
  • a copy of the recently released “Family Tree Maker 2017“.

This is the event of the year and not to be missed!

Further information is available at

Looking forward to you joining us at The Braid this Saturday,
The Ballymena Branch Committee

The late Randal Gill, IGRS Fellow

Posthumous presentation to family of late Randal Gill to mark his election as a Fellow of the Irish Genealogical Research Society – recognising his decades of dedicated service to the genealogy community in Northern Ireland and further afield.

Read more …

My Family Odyssey

The result of the Competition was announced at the Society’s Annual General Meeting on Saturday 21 May 2016.

There were 18 entries received for the Competition.

1st Place –
William Kelley, Associate Member, USA

2nd Place –
Audrey McKeown, Branch Member, Belfast

3rd Place –
Catherine Quinn, Associate Member, Australia

NIFHS Polo Shirts

NIFHS Polo Shirt
Easy care material 65% polyester / 35% cotton, unique anti-pill fabric, taped neck seam, razor sharp plackets, flat knit collar and ribbed cuffs & mock horn buttons.
Sizes: S (36”); M (39”); L (43”); XL (47”); XXL (51”); 60’s (56”).
Available only in Turquoise.
Price £20 plus P&P.
Delivery time –  approximately 4 weeks.
For further details / enquiries – email Maggie Lyttle at, who will be pleased to help you.

About Members-Only Content

At present there are not many Members Only records online but we hope to remedy that – but it takes time and, in the case of Church Records, permission has to be obtained from the churches.  When the Society obtained most of its church records permission was sought and given to create printed Library copies as, at the time, there was no thought of putting them online.
“Surname Lists” are being added – so that you can see whether it is worth checking the printed version in the Library or, if you are unable to visit, using the Look Up Service.
When viewing the Records Lists, if you click on a link one of two things will happen:
  1. If it is available to everyone you will go straight to the page.
  2. If it is only for Members you will be asked to log in (unless you have already done so once); you will then go to the page.

The Members Only Content is identified by its name being shown in blue within the Records Lists.  

The list of Resources available online for NIFHS Members.

(Username and Password required to access them.)
Parish Register Indexes
– Holy Family Parish Church, Belfast: Baptisms – Marriages – Burials
Co. Antrim gravestone inscriptions
– St. Mary’s R. C. Parish Church, Greencastle, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim
– “Our Lady’s Acre,” Longlands Road, Newtownabbey – the extension graveyard for St. Mary’s.
Co. Down gravestone inscriptions
– Ardglass Church of Ireland Graveyard, Co. Down
– Ballycruttle R. C. Graveyard, near Downpatrick, Co. Down
– Reformed Presbyterian Church Graveyard, Killinchy, Co. Down
– Boardmills 1st Presbyterian Church Graveyard, Co. Down
– Boardmills 2nd Presbyterian Church Graveyard, Co. Down
– Bright Church of Ireland Graveyard, Co. Down
– Holy Trinity Church, Kircubbin, Co. Down
– Killysuggan Graveyard, Newtownards, Co. Down
– Magherahamlet Parish Church, Drumgavlin, Ballynahinch, Co. Down
– Saintfield 2nd Presbyterian Church, Ballynahinch Road, Saintfield, Co. Down
– St. Andrew’s Church of Ireland Graveyard, Balligan, Inishargy, Co. Down
Co. Fermanagh gravestone inscriptions
– Gravestone inscriptions from Castle Archdale, Killadeas, Trory and Servicemen’s graves from two churches in Irvinestown
Co. Tyrone gravestone inscriptions
– Corrick Abbey Burying Ground, Co. Tyrone
– Corrick Abbey Families
Presbyterian Historical Society Envelopes
– A collection of correspondence to and from the Presbyterian Historical Society dating from the early 1900s up until about 1996.
Also included are some USA Obituaries and Notes from Canada.
The Irish Law Times & Solicitors’ Journal lists
– Volume VI – 1872 : A weekly Newsletter and Gazette of legal postings.

Go to the Members Only Content page.

Surnames Lists for some Church Records

Surnames Lists for the following Church Records are now available.

Ballyblack Presbyterian – Baptisms, Marriages
Ballyfrenis Presbyterian – Baptisms, Communicants, Marriages
Ballygilbert Presbyterian – Baptisms, Marriages
Ballygowan Presbyterian – Baptisms, Marriages
Ballygrainey Presbyterian – Baptisms, Marriages, Burials
Ballyhalbert St. Andrew’s Church of Ireland – Marriages
Ballyhemlin Non-Subscribing Presbyterian – Baptisms, Marriages
Ballymacarrett Methodist – Baptisms, Marriages
Ballywalter Presbyterian – Baptisms, Marriages
Belfast, Agnes Street Methodist – Baptisms, Marriages

The Church Records page has been updated to included the links to the Lists.

The Look Up Service is available for members who want to investigate any leads.


NIFHS logoThank you for visiting our new website.  A lot of work has been done to get the enhanced content in place for the beginning of the new season of Branch Events which starts on 1 September. We hope you will be able for find something of interest in the Resources or Branches pages.

All Branches events for the season have been compiled into the Calendar.