The Irish Genealogical Research Society is delighted to announce that its website, IrishAncestors.ie, has won the Federation of Family History Society’s Geoff Riggs Award for 2013 for the Best Website for a Medium Sized family history society.
The Award competition allows the Federation an opportunity each year to judge websites against specified criteria and thus helps create “a benchmark with the aim of improving the overall quality of genealogy and family history society websites”. The award is sponsored by ABM Publishing, the company behind the UK-based Family Tree magazine.
On learning of the Award, IGRS chairman Steven Smyrl said ”I’m delighted for the recognition this Award brings to all those who have worked so hard to create our new website, in particular our webmaster, Nick Reddan and the project manager, Claire Santry. It’s hard to believe that we only launched it 12 months ago and in that time it has raised the Society’s profile to a whole new level, as witnessed by our growing membership, now standing at almost 900. This very special award – effectively a peer-reviewed award – is much coveted by family history societies and the IGRS will be extremely proud to display the 2013 Award emblem on its website’s homepage.”
When drawing up plans for IrishAncestors, the Society felt strongly that the new website should appeal to all Irish genealogy researchers, whether or not they were members of the IGRS. Through offering helpful leads and expert advice to all-comers, as well as allowing free access to some of the Society’s resources, the website helps the IGRS fulfil its mission of promoting Irish genealogical research as widely as possible. In addition, there is a significant and growing Members’ Area where more of the Society’s unique library holdings have been added each and every month since the site’s launch in March 2013.
The IGRS is particularly proud of its Early Irish Marriage Finder database, which now comprises almost 100,000 names, and the names index to its annual journal (The Irish Genealogist, first published in 1937) which refers to a quarter of a million names. Both are free for all to use.
The Geoff Riggs Award is divided into three categories: large, medium and small societies. The large society Best Website Award was made to the Western Australian Genealogical Society and that to the smaller society was made to the Malvern Family History Society.
The Award from the Federation comes hot on the heels of the IGRS being ranked among the Top 100 genealogy websites in the world by Genealogy In Time magazine.