19 February 2010

RESEARCHERS HELPING RESEARCHERS: CONNORS GENEALOGY

There are quite a few websites that began as limited family homepages, but over the years have morphed into databases useful to a broad range of  Irish researchers. From time to time, I plan to feature some of these sites in this blog. This week, I am highlighting one that has helped many researchers in quite a few counties: ConnorsGenealogy (link below).
Pat Connors began ConnorsGenealogy in 2001, when she was fairly new to genealogy. Her first site was on the old Family Tree Maker website, but that site did not give Pat the freedom to expand, so she obtained her domain name and set up an independent site.
"I wanted to showcase my roots with my website," said Pat. But her site soon grew from being a personal showcase to a valuable resource for other researchers. The site expanded as Pat began to add sections for mailing lists she administered, then as she added counties to own family research.  Rather than discard records that did not deal directly with her family, Pat began to post them for the use of other researchers.
So, do not be misled by the title "ConnorsGenealogy," because we non-Connors can find valuable resources on her site. Researchers for the following counties should take a look:
Armagh
Clare
Galway
Kilkenny
Leitrim
Leix (Laois)
Limerick
Mayo
Monaghan
Tipperary
Researchers for Irish in New York State will also find information and records, as will those from Canada (Welland Co./Ontario). Interested in the English and Welsh locations of Cornwall, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, and Swansea? Worth a look, too.
Pat has an excellent search engine for researchers who want to narrow their search instead of browsing through the website.
Be sure to check out the Surname Registries. Pat said, "I try to update them every other month so they are current. The job takes me almost a full week, however, I consider it one of the best services I am offering on the site."
By the way, Pat administers the site completely by herself. Volunteers do help by transcribing various records to include on the site, and she is always looking for help.
Pat offers all this information for free--she does not charge for the data, even though the costs of maintaining the site have risen in terms of time and money. In an effort to defray costs, she does present a number of advertisers on her site, but the site itself remains non-commercial.
Pat made a point which I consider to be the Golden Rule of Genealogy:
"I warn people not to use the info they find on my website as source documents for their family research. Mistakes can easily be made when doing transcribing. So, one should go back to the source document (always given) and check for themselves as to the accuracy of the data."
I want to thank Pat for taking the time to "walk through" her website with me, and for all the work she does for the genealogical community. Find her website at
http://www.connorsgenealogy.com/