1901 and 1911 census records for Ireland are now online
The final 1911 returns went online in December 2009. All 1901 census records went online in June 2010
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Ireland's census records have always presented family history reseachers with one major problem: the lack of a name index. So the best Irish genealogy news in years came in 2005 with the announcement of a collaboration between the National Archives in Dublin (NAI) and Library & Archives Canada to digitise, index and publish online both the 1901 and 1911 census.
The website (see link at foot of page) provides free access to an extensive search facility and images, to people of Irish descent both in Ireland and abroad.
A brief resume of the project releasesOn 22 December 2008 the National Archives of Ireland released the 1911 census online (plus historical photos and essays) for counties Antrim, Down and Kerry. Although at least six months later than scheduled, this tranche of online returns was warmly welcomed. It came one year after the first returns, for Dublin, went online.
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With the December 2008 releases, the NAI confirmed their commitment to completing the project in 2009. Researchers were advised that the 1911 records were to be placed online in three tranches before the end of summer while the returns for 1901 census were expected to be placed online in one fell swoop at the end of 2009. As with the Dublin, Antriim, Down and Kerry 1911 releases, contextual material were to accompany the releases of some of the major urban population bases such as Cork.
On 29 July 2009 the National Archives of Ireland announced that the second of this year's tranches of releases (due 'mid-July') was delayed for over one month in order to achieve the required level of accuracy. The revised date of release was 'late August'. The date for the third tranche of releases was also knocked on by one month to 'late September'.
On 28 August 2009 family historians all over the world were taken by
On 11 March 2010, at a seminar in Dublin, the NAI's project leader advised that the 1901 census was not immediately imminent but would be online by the middle of June. Unlike the 1911 release, the 1901 records for all 32 counties will be released in one fell swoop. However, due to staff shortages at the National Archives, transcriptions and digitised images will not have been thoroughly checked before release.
On 17 May 2010 a date was announced for the online release of the I901 returns: Thursday 3rd June.
On 2 June 2010, one day earlier than advertised, the 1901 census of Ireland was released online.