Friday, 30 October, 2020
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As part of our Counties in Focus series, we're taking a look at some of the gems that Sligo has to offer. Scroll down to read about some of the best Chronicles which we have collected from Yeats Country, as well as links to where you can learn more about your Sligo Ancestry.

Picture: Sligo Harbour


The Sligo Diaspora has no shortage of interesting characters. Here are some highlights from our database of Sligo Ancestors. Click on the images below to learn more about the lives of these individuals.

We love to see your Ancestors and read their stories. CLICK HERE to learn how to add your own Sligo Ancestors to our Chronicles Database.

William Butler Yeats

Of course we have to begin with Sligo's most famous son, Nobel Prize winning poet W.B. Yeats.

Charlotte Matlida Stoker

Sticking with the theme of literature, Charlotte Matlida Stoker witnessed the extreme horror of a Cholera outbreak in Sligo. It is believed that her tales of this time inspired her son Bram Stoker to write the iconic story of the undead Count Dracula. 

Brother Walfrid

Born in Ballymote, Brother Walfrid relocated to Glasgow where he founded the Celtic Football Club.

Countess Markievicz

Raised in Lissadell House, Countess Constance Markievicz would become a prominent figure in the Irish Nationalist movement and even become the first female MP to be elected to the British House of Commons. 

Add your Ancestor


Sligo is home to some fantastic historic buildings. Here is just a selection of the examples on our Chronicles database. Did you know that you can connect your Ancestor to a Building? CLICK HERE for an instructional video which explains the process.

Sligo Workhouse

Sligo Workhouse is one of three Union Workhouses located in Sligo. All 163 Irish Workhouses are on our Database of Chronicles. Most people in these communities would have had some sort of connection to these institutions, either as inmates, staff, members of the board of guardians, or even having been born in the lying-in hospitals. The other two County Sligo Workhouses are located in Dromore West and Tobercurry.

Classiebawn Castle

We couldn't discuss iconic Sligo buildings without mentioning Classiebawn Castle. This magnificent private home was built in 1874 and dominates the landscape for miles around.

Sligo Cathedral

This impressive Cathedral was built in the 1870's and is a fine example of the Romanesque Revivial style of architecture.

Lissadell House

Located in Drumcliff, Lissadell House is best known as the childhood home of Countess Markievicz. 

Sligo Buildings


Sligo has seen some very important and tragic points in history. The links below will take you to some of the most notable events from Sligo's past. 

1832 Cholera Epidemic

The year 1832 saw a devastating outbreak of Cholera sweep through County Sligo. It is believed that tales of the horrors witnessed during this time were the inspiration for Bram Stoker's work Dracula.

Shipwreck of the Carricks of Whitehaven

On the 18th of May 1847, 125 people lost their lives when the Carricks of Whitehaven sank en route to Canada. The ship departed from Sligo Port carrying passengers who were desperately trying to escape the poverty and starvation of the Great Hunger. 

Sligo Timeline

Places to Visit

From its dramatic mountains to its rich heritage, Sligo has no shortage of places to visit. Here is a snapshot of Heritage Centres and Museums in County Sligo.

Sligo County Museum and Library

The Sligo County Museum and Library is located in Sligo town and is an excellent resource for local history research. 

The Yeats Memorial Building

The Yeats Memorial Building is managed by the Yeats Society and is home to an exhibition and provides guided tours.  

Sligo Local Guide

Find out more about your Sligo roots

Whatever stage you are at with researching your Sligo ancestry, we have the resources to help you find out more about your Yeats Country Roots. Once you have tracked down your Sligo Ancestors, be sure to add them to the IrelandXO Chronicles so that others can read their story. Who knows? You may even find a connection you never knew you had.

We highly suggest checking out our Sligo Message Board where our wonderful team of volunteers are waiting to answer your queries and help you to solve your family history mysteries. CLICK HERE to get started.

In the meantime here are some pages that we have put together to help you on your genealogy journey. 

  • If you're not sure where exactly in Sligo your Ancestors lived then CLICK HERE for information on how to Find Your Sligo Parish.

  • As always, your local library is an incredibly valuable resource. Contact the relevant Sligo County Library to see what resources they have.

  • You can find a guide to tracing your Sligo roots by CLICKING HERE.

  • In 1837 the Lewis' Topographical Survey was published. This provides detailed snapshots of life in each Civil Parish just before the Famine. CLICK HERE for more information on the Sligo entries.

  • You can find more stories and research relating to Sligo in the News section of IrelandXO. You can find this by CLICKING HERE.


We hope you have found the information we have shared helpful. While you are here, we have a small favour to ask. Ireland Reaching Out is a non-profit organisation that relies on public funding and donations to ensure a completely free family history advisory service to anyone of Irish heritage who needs help connecting with their Irish place of origin. If you would like to support our mission, please click on the donate button and make a contribution. Any amount, big or small, is appreciated and makes a difference.