Marleta Childs
P. O. Box 6825
LUBBOCK, TX 79493-6825

     Brian Mitchell, noted authority on family roots in the Emerald Isle, has added another new title to the popular “Genealogy at a Glance” (GAAG) series. His most recent work, Scots-Irish Genealogy Research, focuses on pre-1800 ancestors who came from the nine counties of the Province of Ulster: Antrim, Armagh, Down, Fermanagh, Londonderry, and Tyrone in Northern Ireland and Cavan, Donegal, and Monaghan in the Republic of Ireland.

     As he did in his earlier GAAG publications, he furnishes an overview of basics that researchers need to know in order to navigate successfully through genealogical resources in both the United States and Northern Ireland. To inexperienced genealogists, for example, the use of the term “Irish” can be misleading, since the meaning in the United States changed over time. Mitchell succinctly supplies background information about the transformation in his sections on “quick facts” and historical background. He points out that in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, the Scotch-Irish in the United States referred to themselves as “Irish” since their Scottish ancestors —mostly Presbyterians--settled in Ulster in the seventeenth century. After migrating to the American colonies, they mainly settled in the South and Midwest. After the Irish famine of 1846-1851, however, they called themselves “Scotch-Irish” (or “Scots-Irish”) to differentiate their ancestors from the later nineteenth century immigrants; the new Irish immigrants were predominantly from the Republic of Ireland, were Roman Catholic, and settled in the northeastern part of the United States. Genealogists also need to be aware that in Northern Ireland, the term “Ulster Scots” is used when referring to the Scotch-Irish.

     Next, the author briefly describes the difficulty with and the importance of determining an ancestor’s place of origin in Ireland. Briefly, he discusses family names as a possible source of evidence.

     Mitchell then hones in on various sources utilized in tracing Scottish ancestors in Ireland. Resources include eighteenth-century passenger lists, family names, church registers, census substitutes, and estate records.

     In case family researchers want to get in touch with Northern Ireland major repositories that hold significant Scots-Irish record collections, Mitchell furnishes the names, mailing addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and websites for several archives, societies, and libraries. He also gives the websites for a few online resources in the United States. In addition, he suggests at the end of several sections a few books for further reading.

     Following the standard format of the series, Mitchell distills into four laminated pages the key elements concerning his specific subject. Scots-Irish Genealogy Research is a handy, compact guide that will be useful to the millions of family researchers whose roots extend back to Ulster.

     To the guide's price of $8.95, buyers should add the cost for postage and handling charges. For U. S. postal mail, the cost is $4.50 for one item and $2.50 for each additional copy; for FedEx ground service, the cost is $6.00 for one copy and $2.50 for each additional item. The guide (item order 3876) may be purchased by check, money order, MasterCard, or Visa from Genealogical Publishing Company, 3600 Clipper Mill Rd., Suite 260, Baltimore, MD 21211-1953. For phone orders, call toll free 1-800-296-6687; fax 1-410-752-8492; website

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