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This couple are my husbands Great grandparents, they married in Airdrie, Lanarkshire in 1860 and I have them on the Scottish Census from 1861 through to their deaths in Scotland in 1903 & 1912. This is the only reason that I know they came from Ireland. It would appear from Census details that it was Downpatrick, County Down but I have no way of confirming this. Everything I look at re Irish research comes up blan. There are many different spelling of the McWhenie surname on any document I have found. I do have James parents as James McEwan (McEwen) and Jane McNeil (they both died in Scotland which helps) Jane's parents are Williem McWhinnie and Agnes McConnell (information on their marriage cert.) Any help on where I can find information on their births and the marriages of their parents would be very helpful. 


Monday 13th September 2021, 09:28PM

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  • Statutory birth, death and marriage registration (in some jurisdictions called Vital Records) only started in Ireland in 1864, save for non RC marriages which were recorded from 1845 onwards. So you probably won’t find statutory birth, death or marriage certificates in Ireland for this family. For earlier years you usually need to rely on church records, where they exist.  Ideally you need to know the precise denomination and have some idea of where the person was born in order to search the correct records. Not all churches have records for that period and not all are on-line. 

    RC records are mostly on-line on the nli site:

    For other denominations, the churches usually hold the originals but there are also copies in PRONI, the public record office, in Belfast. A personal visit is required to access them. Access to the records there is free. This link explains what records exist, parish by parish:

    If you are unable to go yourself, you could employ a researcher. Researchers in the PRONI area:

    Elwyn, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Wednesday 15th September 2021, 07:18PM
  • Elwyn, I really appreciate your reply, I might have to see if I can afford to employ a researcher on this. We are in New Zealand so no way can visit Ireland and we are on the pension so cost is a facor. I do apprciate your reply though.

    Kate McEwan nee Paton


    Thursday 16th September 2021, 11:21PM