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     Not a person to rest on his laurels, David Dobson keeps on compiling books dealing with materials from a wide variety of miscellaneous sources. He has added another volume to one of his several continuing series, which focus on ordinary people. Recently, he completed THE PEOPLE OF IRELAND, 1600-1699: PART FOUR.

     As the author points out in all of his previous volumes in this series, family researchers tracing pedigrees in the "Emerald Isle" prior to the eighteenth century face a daunting task. Providing essential data on baptisms, marriages, and burials, most church records do not go back beyond the late seventeenth century. The few that extend back that far are usually incomplete. Often called Quakers, the Society of Friends is the only religious group to have maintained excellent records, but even they only start in the mid-seventeenth century.

     To help overcome the lack of religious materials, Dobson's Irish series pulls together obscure data from alternative printed and manuscript resources not easily accessible to ordinary researchers. For this latest volume, he delved into the holdings of The National Archives in London, where he found the HIGH COURT OF THE ADMIRALTY OF ENGLAND records especially intriguing. His primary sources, however, are the CALENDAR OF PATENT ROLLS, IRELAND and various collections of documents in private hands published by the Historical Manuscript Commission.

     Since Dobson's series, Scots-Irish Links, 1575 – 1725, concerns people of Scottish descent in Ireland, he generally excludes information about that ethnic group in this volume. So this publication predominantly pertains to individuals of native Irish or English lineage as well as to a handful who were of Dutch, Flemish, or French origin.

     The short, documented sketches of approximately 1,500 inhabitants of Ireland in the seventeenth century differ in length, according to the amount of material available on the individual. Besides a person’s name, an entry usually provides a date and a place. Numerous sketches contain miscellaneous supplemental data, such as family relationships, occupation, or a crime committed. Dated 22 December 1617, the entry for Christopher PETERSON, for instance, asserts that he was "from Alkmaar, Holland” and received “a grant of denization in Ireland.” (Denization meant that a foreigner could reside in Ireland and gain the rights of citizenship.) The entry for Brien Oge O’HAGGAN states that he was “a native who was granted land in the Precinct of Oriel” in 1611. Another interesting entry is for David SELLICK, who was one of two men transporting 550 Irish men and women from Kinsale to New England in 1653. Perhaps the most fascinating entry is for Margaret CRAWLEY, “born in Dundalk in 1688,” who “had been married to nine husbands, but never had any issue.” Some recurring surnames in the entries are BUTLER, CARTY/CARTIE, DILLON, FITZGERALD, FRENCH, LEA/LEE/LEIGH, LEATHES, LYNCH/LYNCHE, MACDONNEL/MCDONNELL, MCGRANELL, NUGENT, O’HANLON, O’NEAL/O’NEIL, O’RORKE, POWER, PURCELL, ROCHE, WALSH, and WHITE.

     Since it supplies facts about persons from several ethnic backgrounds, Dobson’s latest series is another worthy addition to the literature pertaining to family research in the Emerald Isle. Genealogical libraries will want to include THE PEOPLE OF IRELAND, 1600-1699: PART FOUR in their holdings.

     The 114-page paperback has an introduction, a map of Ireland during the reign of King James I, and a list of references and their abbreviations Dobson used in his source citations. To the book's price of $16.50, buyers should add the cost for postage and handling charges. For U. S. postal mail, the cost is $5.50 for one book and $2.50 for each additional copy; for FedEx ground service, the cost is $7.50 for one copy and $2.50 for each additional book. The volume (item order #8108) may be purchased by check, money order, MasterCard, or Visa from Clearfield Company, 3600 Clipper Mill Rd., Suite 260, Baltimore, Maryland 21211-1953. For phone orders, call toll free 1-800-296-6687; fax 1-410-752-8492; website at

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