Monday, 24 September 2012

Griffith's Valuation on The Genealogist

The Genealogist ( has added Griffith's Valuation to its site, the records of the primary valuation for rates purposes by Sir Richard Griffith of properties across Ireland between 1848 and 1864. From the latest company newsletter:

Griffith's Valuation records provide a substitute for the lost census records for Ireland as it lists every householder in Ireland at the time it was taken. Griffith's Valuation was carried out between 1848 and 1864 and provides records on where people lived and who owned property in Ireland. It is searchable by forename and surname with phonetic matching and wildcards in combination with County and Barony and lists over 2.6 million individuals.

The information given includes County, Barony, Poor Law Union then divided into electoral divisions, parishes and townlands, and OS map sheet number with link to view available maps. This is the first time that Griffith’s Valuation has been made available with our Phonetic matching, Nicknames, Wildcards and OS Maps

It's not immediately obvious where it is on the site, but you'll find it in the British and International Records menu, as an option on the Irish Records page. The site does indeed link to corresponding OS maps, but to find them you need to do your search and then click on the icon that says View Full Transcriptions Details.

Unfortunately the phonetic matching failed on the very first search I made. One of my wife's Tipperary based ancestors, Patrick Giles, is recorded on Griffiths as Patrick Jyles. I searched with Patrick Jyles and found him instantly, but when I searched with Patrick Giles it completely missed him. I tried Jiles also for good measure, but still no luck. On a more positive note, when I tried the search with a wild card, using Patrick *les as the term and the right county (Tipperary, South Riding), it did find him. On another plus note, the transcriptions are very good, and crucially also include the publication date (each place was only enumerated once between 1848 and 1864, so useful to know exactly when the relevant record was published!). It is a pity though that the returns are not searchable by townland or parish (which can be done using the keyword field on, only by county and barony.

The maps are in black and white, and so are not quite as easy to make out as the colour based equivalents on the free to access Ask About Ireland website - and there is no user guide to explain how to convert the findings of the first column on the returns to help you locate a property on the map (see Ask About Ireland's guide at In fact, as far as I can see, there is absolutely no user guide even explaining what the records are or what the returns mean, which would certainly be desirable considering how important the records are as a census substitute for Ireland. Also with the maps, on the above example with Patrick Jyles, I was in fact offered four maps to view on the transcripts page - two under the Place section, and two more under the Town section. With the latter two I had "Error: Image Missing" messages appear.

In summary - in my opinion the transcripts are better laid out on The Genealogist than on both and Ask About Ireland. Ask About Ireland's maps are still to be beaten, but at least The Genealogist does make an offering here, unlike The keyword option on will allow searches at a more localised level. As with, the images can be saved as PDF files, not the case on Ask About Ireland (unless you 'Print to PDF' using the print icon there, if your computer allows that), and the maps on The Genealogist can at least be saved in PDF format also - you need to 'Print Screen' on Ask About Ireland and save the image there using a paint programme.

The Genealogist has also now completed its fully searchable birth indexes for England and Wales from 1837-2005, and has now added unredacted images for the 1911 census for the two countries. The full newsletter is available at

(With thanks to The Genealogist)


Scottish Research Online - 5 weeks online Pharos course, £45.99, taught by Chris Paton from 26 SEP 2012 - see
New book: It's Perthshire 1866 - there's been a murder... (from June 12th 2012)

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