iCARA  irish caribbean ancestry - reconnecting through dna


What is iCARA?

A bit of Background

The History Centre

Reconnecting with your Irish Ancestry

The DNA Project

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Reconnecting with your Irish Ancestry

The first step in any sort of ancestry research is to document your family tree. This means writing down what you know, and then asking as many family members as possible to fill in the blanks. This is before you even start thinking about looking up the records. First step, write down what you know. This is a very important step and should send you back into the 1800's, back to your great or great great grandparents, and the times they lived through.

There are a variety of (free) software programmes that you can use on your computer to help you do this and these are discussed in the first section below, Making a Start. 

Once you have an outline of your family tree from the stories you've collected from your relatives, the next step is to look for what records are available, where they are located, and how to access them. A lot of records are available on the internet, and more and more are becoming available every day, but for some records you will have to travel to where they are, or get someone to look them up for you. The Adding Records section discusses finding records, adding them to your tree, and how to get help doing this. This last point is very important. There are a lot of enthusiastic people out there doing family tree research who are willing to assist you. Help is at hand!

There is a lot of information available online about Irish surnames, their meanings, their origins, and their distribution in Ireland. This is covered in the third section below and will give you some useful background information that will help you identify some possible or probable locations for where your Irish ancestors came from in Ireland - your Irish Ancestral Homeland. The last section covers some of the most common Irish surnames found in the Caribbean and gives an account of their meaning, origin, history, and distribution in Ireland.

All the above can be done without needing to do a DNA test. And you might be fortunate enough to have an Irish surname that could only have come from one place in Ireland. In that case, you are very lucky indeed. However, for many people, their surname may have come from several different places in Ireland and doing a DNA test may help determine which of these places is likely to have been the homeland of their own particular ancestor. Go to The DNA Project section to learn how DNA can help you pinpoint your Ancestral Homeland and potentially reconnect you with distant Irish cousins.  

Making a Start

Adding Records

Researching your Irish Surname

Irish surnames in the Caribbean

Maurice Gleeson

May 2013

Copyright 2011-2013 (http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~spearinAll Rights Reserved.  Creative Commons License
iCARA and the Spearin Surname Project at http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~spearin is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.
Information and data obtained from iCARA and the Spearin Surname Project must be attributed to the project as outlined in the Creative Commons License. Please notify administrator when using data for public or private research. 

Last update: May 2013

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