An Icebreaker

This topic has 12 replies, 11 voices, and was last updated 2 months, 1 week ago by BrennanJMD.

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    For all those who see this,

    When did the interest of genealogy first start for you? I have been researching for 3 years (since 2017)


     Noella Coutts

    About 18 months ago after a dare from my sister to take a DNA test with Ancestry. And yes it confirmed what I already knew- my Ancestry is …. Irish!!! But I have always been curious about my gggtandmother whose surname was Dunoyer. And somfor a while I wasmhooked.  Not Irish, French. I thought. Perhaps Hugeunot origins? Sadly despite extensive research and even joining  the Hugeunot society I haven’t found out much, in fact I think I am about to throw the towel in on Ancestr!!!!  The records for all of my ancestors simply are not there. Can’t get back beyond ggrandparents! Guess Imam lucky to be able to get that far.
    But I have met a wonderful community of Galway researchers with common ancestors and that has been fun!


     Web Editor

    Great idea for a thread.

    I think getting back to gg grandparents is a great achievement. Maybe focus on a different branch for a while?

    I started with a school project when I was 12. Spent some time with my grandparents asking questions and then picked up seriously in my 20s. A couple of decades later, I’m doing it professionally but still passionate about my own genealogy.

     Ellen Stuart


    I have always been interested in family history. As a child, I would get my grandmother to talk about her childhood and I still have a few scribbled trees that I constructed from her info (not entirely accurate of course!). But I would say that I only really began investigating in earnest about 3 years ago, like Daniel. My mum, who had lived with me and my family, died 4 years ago and  left me folders full of certificates, and all the research she had done for the previous 10 years. And when I felt ready, I picked up where she left off. And very quickly became hooked!

     Roz McCutcheon

    Like Ellen, I was always fascinated by family stories, but I started genealogy in earnest when I was 15. A distant cousin of my mother’s had died & left a tiny estate which, nevertheless, needed to be finalised. The family solicitor contacted Mum, as one of his only known relatives, asking how we were related. Mum immediately exclaimed that she’d be no good with paperwork, but that one of her daughters was “bookish”. That was 1962, when my only tools were notepaper & stamps, but I did eventually succeed in the task. Two very surprised ladies, one in Chile & the other in South Africa, received cheques in due course. No money came to my family, but I had caught the bug. While I was at the task, my mother said, “And while you’re at that, you could also find out what happened to to my great-grandparents in 1847. They disappeared & left two small bewildered boys to be brought up by relatives, one in Alabama & the other in Co Wexford.” I did find out, but only in 2008, some 46 years later, and was able to recount the whole story to my mother some months before she died. Roz

     Web Editor

    That’s amazing, Roz. I’m not sure what way your mother meant “bookish” but, while I’m sure you’re very well-read, I wouldn’t ever call you bookish!

     Shonagh Love

    I began by talking to my dad’s cousin in the 1980s – Dad was like a closed trap as far as family history went. I despaired of untangling the Irish family so started with my mother’s English side and my New Zealand family – going to the National Library whenever I was in Wellington. Then I came to Ireland in 2004 and a few years later a contact suggested I try the Registry of Deeds. Then I was really hooked! I have transcribed and abstracted hundreds of deeds (and see the results on Roz’s BMD pages) and go back to them to work out new branches. I’m lucky – the family were farmers, craftsmen, brewers, cabinet makers, and they made deeds and they deposited them at the Registry. Even if your people were not well off they may be named there as tenants or neighbours – as I’m finding for another branch of my family. That’s why the Registry of Deeds project is important. Shonagh

     Bob Frewen

    @ Noella Coutts – Du Noyer / Dunoyer is a Huguenot surname, a branch of the family was well established in Dublin by 1800. One member, George Victor Du Noyer became a respected surveyor and artist in the mid -1800’s; there was a TV program about him on BBC a few years ago.

     Noella Coutts

    Thank you Bob Freeman, yes I have always suspected they were Hugeunot ‘s but despite trawling through the Hugeunot society records I don’t seem to be able to further my research with this family.
    I didn’t see the program- not available here in Australia. I am not 100% sure mu DuNoyer family are directly connected to Charles Victor, the painter though I have a theory that his father could be a cousin of my ggrandmother who arrived in Dublin around 1808( a newpaper article of the time suggests he was’newly arrived’ then. Some family members think he was my ggrandmother’s brother but???
    I am honestly not sure how to further my research on this family. I have all but given up. I had thought of writing tom  Petra Coffrey( think that is her name) as she seems to be an expert on George Victor, the artist but somehow haven’t  plucked up the courage!! I guess she could just ignore my email!
    But other than that- not sure where to go for more information.

     CK Genie

    Hello, I am a returning member here. I have been a family history researcher for over 13 years. I have my own website just as a hobby to help people research.

    I started my search after my father passed. My grandfather never knew his father and his parents did not marry, although somehow his fathers surname was on my grandfathers birth cert.

    I found the man who I thought to be my great grandfather (MK), he married and had five children. I never knew for sure if we were related until I took a dna test and was connected to a grand nephew of MK who lives in USA. I now have so many family branches on ancestry and don’t think I will be finished researching!!!

    Delighted to be here.


    Hi All
    There’s so many story’s your maw and dad spoke about, telling of relatives you can or maybe not remember. One of my cousins back in Paisley touched on the genealogy quest early last year off the back of an enquiry from another cousin over in Canada, this got me thinking and reality kicked in, That if nothings done to capture these old bits of valuable information they’ll be lost forever. So I started questioning my maw who is 87 and loves to talk but her stories and dates change and insists on stopping at every lamp post with every tiny detail, but we get there in the end. I quickly realized how much of a black hole this genealogy is, and the realization of these genealogy bandits or slot machine subscription paid websites.

    Searching & trying to validate information on Smith’s from Clyduff, Kilmurry, Ballycommon, Tullamore, County Offaly




    Nice one


    I’ve always been interested in family history. In 1980 while a student in University I brought a friend home. When my father met him he asked if he had a cousin called Tony, who was a dentist in Bray and who was from, Aclare, Co. Sligo. My friend confirmed that he did, to which my father replied, “Well then, in that case I think we’re cousins. My mother always insisted that we were their cousins, so we might be your cousins also”. My friend finally underwent an Ancestry DNA test last Christmas the results of which, showed that we are estimated 5th-8th cousins. Although the relationship is getting a bit distant it was nice to have my granny’s allegations of kinship confirmed and it only took 40 years!

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