South Bend, Indiana is the small town that is renowned for being the home of the famous Notre Dame University. The university was founded by a French Catholic priest in 1842 and is intimately associated with Catholic Irish higher education. Countless numbers of Americans of Irish heritage have studied there. The town itself attracted a small but significant number of Irish immigrants in the post-Famine years. By 1860, there was about 400 Irish born residents.
If you know or think that some of your Irish ancestors may have lived in South Bend, then Jill Dale's Rootsweb site is an important port of call for your research. Among her research focusing on county Mayo, and Irish immigration in Britain, she has documented her extensive research about Irish immigrant families in the city. Her own Brennan family research is the focus, but she has gone far beyond this to include information about Irish immigrants coming to the city, a history of the main Catholic parish, St. Joseph's, and transcriptions from many 19th century sources such as censuses, parish registers, and city directories. The transcribed information is helpfully divided by family name.
Access the website by clicking here.
 Familysearch.org. United State Census 1860. 2014. Manual index search of https://familysearch.org/search/collection/results?count=75&query=%2Bresidence_place%3A%22south%20bend%2C%20indiana%22~%20%2Bbirth_place%3Aireland~&collection_id=1473181: accessed 7 December 2014.