Researching pre-publication records

A number of points need to be kept in mind.

1. Pre-publication manuscript valuation records do not survive for all parishes. The only way to find out if something exists is to check the National Archives of Ireland, LDS, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland or Valuation Office catalogues.

2. The categories into which the records are sorted were somewhat hazy to begin with, and have only become hazier over the years. Check under all the categories, and investigate anything that survives for an area you are interested in.

3. Remember that Griffith’s, far from being the record of a settled population, is in fact a snapshot of the aftermath of a catastrophe, the Great Famine of 1845-1848. In many areas, enormous changes took place between the manuscript and the published valuations. Some areas had to be re-valued four or five times.

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