Monday, September 1, 2014

County Derry/Londonderry Emigration List, 1834-1836

In the 1820s, the British Parliament hatched an ambitious plan to survey the whole of Ireland. Along with the maps, memoirs were to be created which would be written descriptions to accompany the maps. The memoirs were to include information about such aspects as natural features of the land, modern and ancient topography, occupations, religion, emigration, and habits of the people. Sadly, the plan was not realized for the whole of Ireland.[1] 

But the hoped for incredible level of detail was collected for the first two counties surveyed, Derry and Antrim. In particular, this included lists of people who emigrated, where they went to, and what townland they were from.

A listing of emigrants from four (civil) parishes in County Derry is freely available on the Library and Archives Canada (LAC) website. Emigration Lists of Various County Londonderry Parishes was compiled by Dr. D.A. Chart from documents at the Royal Irish Academy in Dublin. He presented the document to LAC around 1935. 

Section from Emigration Lists of Various County Londonderry Parishes

In total it comprises 52 pages and lists hundreds of emigrants. Information includes: name of emigrant, year of emigration, port of arrival, age, religion, and townland of origin. Emigrants are listed traveling to New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Quebec, and St. John's. Place such as Scotland, Liverpool, and Jamaica are also listed.

It is a truly outstanding resource and is freely available in pdf format to consult and download. Access it here.

The Ordnance Survey memoirs for various Irish counties are available to purchase on the Ulster Historical Foundation website.

Brian Mitchell, a prominent Derry based genealogist, has published the listing of emigrants from both Derry and Antrim in his book, Irish Emigration Lists, 1833-1839.

[1] Public Records Office of Northern Ireland. Year Unknown.  Local History 3: Ordnance Survey Memoirs. accessed 12 August 2014

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