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Author: Libraries NI
Published on 25 April 2012 11:00 AM

Libraries NI invites you to explore your roots and find out more about where your family comes from, at a Family History Fair, being held on Saturday 28 April in Newry City Library.

Mayor of Newry and Mourne District Council, Councillor Charlie Casey, will officially launch the Fair at 10.00am.

An open invitation has been extended to all budding family historians and anyone searching for their ancestors to come along any time from 10.00am – 4.00pm, to avail of free advice and guidance from experts and experienced researchers.

Exhibitors attending will include representatives from Libraries NI, Public Record Office of NI (PRONI), ULTACH, Mellon Centre for Migration Studies, as well as local history and family history organisations. The Irish Jewish Genealogical Society of Ireland, The Guild of One Name Studies and the Genealogical Society of Ireland will be represented.

Three Family History talks are planned throughout the day, but places must be booked for these, in advance, through the library. Details are as follows:

  • At 11.00am – 'Whispers of the Past: A selection of archive material from the collections of BBCNI and the Ulster Folk and Transport’.

This event features a presentation by Peter Carson from the Sound archive at the UFTM and Niamh McNamara from the BBCNI Community Archive. Items relating to Newry and surrounding area will be included.

  • 12.30pm – 'Emigration from Carlingford Lough'

Presentation by Dr. Patrick Fitzgerald  -The Mellon Centre for Migration Studies, Ulster-American Folk Park, Omagh. The aim of this talk will be to demonstrate the potential of a new online resource, DIPPAM (Documenting Ireland: Parliament, People and Migration -, for investigating the history of emigration from Ireland. The focus will be on historical documents that illustrate emigration from the Carlingford Lough area.

  • 2.00pm – ‘Family History Resources available in PRONI”

Presentation by Dr A.M. McVeigh, the External Events Manager with The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI), which is the official archive for Northern Ireland.

Ancestry Library Edition is accessible on the Libraries NI website to all library members in any Northern Ireland library. It offers unparalleled coverage of the United States and the United Kingdom, including census, vital, church, court, and immigration records, as well as record collections from Canada, Europe, and Australia. This collection, with over 7,500 databases and billions of indexed names, is essential to having a broad genealogy and history collection

Patricia Walker, Specialist Manager - Heritage and Digitisation, Libraries NI, explains:

“Libraries NI are delighted to partner with a number of organisations to hold this Family History Fair in Newry City Library for anyone who is curious about where they come from. On the day you will be pointed in the right direction by enthusiastic friendly people, who have a wealth of knowledge and experience in family history research.

“We hope that this event will encourage lots of people to find out about their family roots, discover their local history, and celebrate their heritage.”

Everyone is welcome and admission is free, so if you are interested in finding out more about their family tree, put Saturday 28th April in your diary and come along for what promises to be an informative and enjoyable day.

For more information, you can contact Newry City Library (79 Hill Street, BT34 1DG), on telephone number 028 3026 4683 or email

For details of all events being held in Northern Ireland libraries, go to

For more information: Call Age NI Advice: 0808 808 7575