Ireland's Public Records Office goes up in flames

30th June 1922
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During the Irish Civil War, the Public Records Office was ravaged by fire following an explosion in the west wing of Dublin's Four Courts.

 As a result of the 1922 Four Courts Fire,  the most famous and far-reaching loss of Irish genealogical record treasures occurred. The interior of the Four Courts (b.1802) was seriously damaged and the central dome collapsed.
What was lost /destroyed in this fire ?

  • all of the Irish Census returns for 1821, 1831, 1841, and 1851 (except a few fragments);
  • over half of the Anglican Church of Ireland parish registers for the years 1869-1922;
  • the majority of the original wills and probate records (dating to the 16th century);
  • all pre-1900 legal court records
  • all local government records.

While this catastrophic event has made 19th-century ancestral research challenging, all was not lost... 

National Archive Records that are searchable online can be found here.

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