Direct evidence of impact

This guide was last updated in 2012

The Poor Law Union administered much of the relief effort that took place during the famine.

Workhouse records survive for some of these Unions and consulting admission and discharge registers for the nearest workhouse may identify your ancestor and their family seeking relief. The surviving workhouse records are usually held in the local county library and archive.

Additional Poor Law Union records, such as minutes of the meetings of the Board of Guardians can include applications for relief during the famine, including assisted emigration.

Some of the larger and better administered estates created tenant application books, in which you can find applications by tenants for reduction of rent, requests for employment and relief, and for assistance to emigrate.

Landlords wishing to clear their estates paid for their tenants to emigrate, records for which can provide specific dates of departure.

Estate papers are largely deposited in the National Library of Ireland and the National Archives of Ireland.

Parish registers
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