Available records

This page is an attempt to list all the known record sources of interest. Initially, of necessity, it starts with records mainly of interest to Torrens family descendants but will also include lists of interest to other names searching the Bann Valley area.

There are two main types of lists: Dated lists, such as the Garvagh Church Visitation lists, and lists of dates, such as the various lists of births, baptisms, marriages and deaths.

The third type of data are more difficult to locate: wills, family records, newspaper extracts and such which contain sporadic mentions which are often of great interest.

Many of the Irish records were lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in Dublin in 1922. My own father watched the events - see R G Torrens - an autobiographical note. So some of the lists and data which survive only survive as extracts because they were researched from the originals before this date. A case in point is the data researched by J W Kernohan for Jared Sidney Torrance.

Families other that the Torrences must have similar extracts and this site and page are an attempt to find these other records and collate them.

Included here are also several lists which are mentioned but whose current whereabouts is unknown. Maybe locating them is a task for some reader?


Dated Lists

1630 Muster Rolls

These are the various muster rolls for the British forces. I know of three rolls but others may well exist. See 1630 Muster Rolls on the Torrens site

1659 census

Barely a census - it simply lists the numbers of persons resident in each townland and their nationalities - English Scots or Irish
This was a head count for taxation purposes (aren't all censuses?) and records exist for several parishes.

Lists for Aghadowey, Desertoghill and Errigal parishes were published as an appendix to Londonderry in Three Centuries by J W Kernohan and the list for Aghadowey in Aghadowey - A parish and its Linen Industry by Rev. T.H.Mullin.

The HMR lists for Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly parishes has been published in The Parishes of Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly by J W Kernohan.

1725 Pyke's survey for Aghadowey parish

Published in Aghadowey - A parish and its Linen Industry by Rev. T.H.Mullin.

1740 Protestant Householder's list

Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly parishes have been published in The Parishes of Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly by J W Kernohan.

1761 40/- Freeholder's lists

This document and subsequent lists are thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6P-18-82) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers. Other extracts may exist in other families and we would like to hear from anyone with information.

The extracts known cover the Torrens families and are available in the documents section of the Torrens site The file in that is called Freeholder.

1765 Alsop's survey for Aghadowey parish

Published in Aghadowey - A parish and its Linen Industry by Rev. T.H.Mullin.

1775 40/- Freeholder's lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6P-18-83) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers.

1775 40/-Freeholder's lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6P-18-84) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers.

1791-1814 Rentals

In The Parishes of Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly, J W Kernohan mentions that rentals lists were available from a Mr S E Smythe-Edwards. These covered Drumnacannon, Drumane, Gortmanacre, Killygulib and others for which Mr S E Smythe-Edwards' grandfather was agent. The whereabouts of these records is not known, though as they were not in Dublin in 1912, it's possible they were not destroyed. However an extract was made around 1900 and this extract is available at PRONI.

In the PRONI extract, Killygullib contains about 80 records, which must have been a large proportion if not all the households in that townland, compared to 1831 census returns.
William Scott has transcribed these records that show with the householder name and rent indicating the size of the rented land for:

1775 40/-Freeholder's lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6P-18-83) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers.

1791 40/- Freeholders lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6P-18-84) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers.

1796 Garvagh Church Visitation lists

A list of over 1900 names. A full transcript is available on this site.

1796 40/- Freeholders lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6P-18-85) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers.

1796 Flax Growers Bounty list

A list I have not seen in whole, but which is apparently reproduced on the Broderbund CD and from the Family History Library (number 1419442). The principal industry in the Aghadowey area was linen production, so several people in the area are mentioned.

1800 40/- Freeholders lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6O-17-9 and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers.

1801 40/- Freeholders lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6O-17-5A) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers.

1803 Agricultural Census

Linde Lunney says that there is a wonderful site which has a searchable index of an 1803 agricultural census of 14 parishes of co. Antrim; amazingly the returns still exist in Dublin for part of co. Antrim and part of co. Down. It is very useful for Antrim families. The site referred to appears to be absent so try a Google search for 1803 agricultural census

1805 Freeholders lists

This document also is thought to have been lost in the bombing of the Four Courts in 1921. Its document number was (6O-20-12) and it is quoted in the Kernohan papers. This same document number apparently covered subsequent years, also listed here, in sequence.

1807 40/- Freeholders lists

The originals of the lists were lost, but various family genealogies may have extracts as to the Torrens families.

1810 Affidavits re Kennedy affray

in 1810 there was an affray in which certain members of the Kenedy families were set about by members of the Torrens families. See

1814 40/- Freeholders lists

The originals of the lists were lost, but various family genealogies may have extracts as to the Torrens families.

1818 Garvagh Church Visitation lists

A full transcript is available on this site.

1821 Census

This was a full census (the first such in Ireland) listing names and ages of every resident. Unfortunately the originals records were destroyed so only extracts exist. One such covers is available as a text list and covers the Torrens families in Garvagh and Aghadowey. There are some other names mentioned, including Hiltons.
Another extract relating Johnstons is known to exist and has been filmed by the LDS (FHL film #0824240). I have not seen a copy of this - so if anyone has one, it could usefully be transcribed to this site.

1825 Garvagh Church Visitation lists

A full transcript is available on this site.

1831 Census

Not a full census, it only lists the names of the heads of households and numbers of residents. It is available at the LDS - FHS Reel 597-160.

1833 Tithe Applotment Books

Aghadowey list was published in Aghadowey - A parish and its Linen Industry by Rev. T.H.Mullin.

1840 Garvagh Church Visitation lists

A full transcript of part 1 is available on this site.
A full transcript of part 2 is available on this site.

1841 Mercer's Estate Rental list

According to The Parishes of Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly, its author J W Kernohan had a copy of this list, it was 'too long for reproduction' in that book. The whereabouts of this list is not known.

1851 Census

1856 Renters at Culmamen

Coleneman, otherwise Culnaman, situate in the Manor of Lizard, Parish of Desertoghill, Half-barony of Coleraine, and County of Londonderry.
Public Records Office of Northern Ireland, Document T1009/457
List is available on this site.

1859 Griffith

Has been printed and is available at many good libraries.

1861 Census

1881 Slater's Directory

Is the first commercial directory to include a listing of farmers in each area. The farmers listed tend to be the more substantial ones. Townland addresses are not included. 1881 is about half way between Griffith's Valuation and the 1901 census. Soon after this, the London Companies who owned most of Co. Londonderry sold their farm land to its occupiers.

1901 Census

Is said to be available on the www.

Listed Dates

In this category must be included all the various wills and other documents, too various to easily list. But I shall include various lists here as they come to light. Lavonne Bradfield has visited many of these and recorded their lists, as well as logging gravestones. Her transcriptions are available as linked below.
Registry of Deeds, Dublin.
The most important single source of genealogical information for the 18th century. The registry is at Henrietta Street, Dublin (where the original books reside) but most of the transcript books have been microfilmed and are available at PRONI.
Important, but also the most difficult to use as searches can be lengthy and unproductive, yet the registry must contain huge amounts of treasure waiting to be uncovered.

Church Records

Church Records have a separate index as there are many churches with many different records. Many have been transcribed and others are being added to this site piecemeal, as they become available. Some records have neen published elsewhere and will be listed here as they become known.

Moneydig National School Registers

A copy of these is in the hands of the mailing list group and we hope to transcribe them soon.

The congregational book of Ballykelly

Jared Sidney Torence mentions this in his book. That was in 1921. It is not known whether this book of records still exists or not.
An Irish Genealogical Source: Guide to Church Records
ISBN: 0901905593 - Published by Ulster Historical Foundation on behalf of PRONI (279 pages)

J W Kernohan records

Around 1920 Jared Sidney Torrens employed J W Kernohan to research the Torrenses in the Bann Valley. The story is told at A genealogical search and many of the records are quoted on the Torrens site. The whole book is also available.

Kilrea, Church of Ireland Vestry Minutes

Survive for the years 1736 - 1951. The Vestry book is at the church in Kilrea and it concerned the official functioning of the Church of Ireland. The vestry met annually, on the first Monday after Easter, to elect certain people to certain offices and to decide occasional other business. In some years, there were additional meetings during the year for specific decisions. Each meeting included a list of the attendees, usually 5 to 10 people. The variations in the signatures of the attendees make it appear as though the attendees signed their own names.
The record has been microfilmed. PRONI references are:

Genealogy collections

Several other genealogical collections, made before the burning of the Four Courts, have survived in private hands. Some of these are in PRONI.

Boyle

Boyle collection is known to exist in Proni. It contains records for Londonderry andd Tyrone, including Dungiven and Limacady, which are close to the Bann Valley.

Johnsons

A Johnston genealogy collection exists in Proni, it covers several families on the Visitation lists.

Torrens

In 1821 J W Kernohan was employed to research the Irish records. Much of his work survives and is available from the Torrens site.

Other Records

Ordnance Survey Memoirs

These were originally notes to accompany a series of maps, written in early 19th century. They contain a wealth of geographical and social notes. They also mention names and give lists on emigrants, so have lots of useful genealogical information. They are inexpensive, about £9.00 or $16.00 per volume (paperback).

The Parishes of Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly

Written by J W Kernohan, was originally published in a limited edition by the Coleraine Chronicle, 1912. It has since been reprinted by Impact Printing, Coleraine and Ballycastle. 1993.

It gives lots of useful background information and lists the 1631 Mercer's Estate Muster Roll, the 1630 Hearth Money Rolls and 1740 Protestant Householders lists, the latter have been transcribed to this site.

Aghadowey - a parish and its linen industry

By Rev. T.H.Mullin. Gives lots of background information on the area. Some of the data has been transcribed and is available via the www.

The Families of Ballyrashane

By Rev. T.H.Mullin.
Ballyrashane is the area north of Ballymoney, through which flows the Bush River. This book gives lots of background information as well as trees of several families of local importance.

Coleraine Chronicle

The local Newspaper for the area
Trevor McClean says "The Coleraine Chronicle and Northern Constitution are most useful sources for anyone working on their Family History if their family came from the area enclosed approximately by Coleraine, Ballymoney, Kilrea, Limavady, Portstewart/rush, Ballycastle, Bushmills. The Chronicle was first published in 1844 and copies are held on microfilm (the older publications) and 'hardcopy' (the more recent publications) in the North-Eastern Education and Library Board Irish Library/Room, Castlerock Road, Coleraine. The Irish Room has many other invaluable resources for the genealogist and local historian, including Griffith's Valuation of Rateable Property in Ireland (c1860) for the local area and the baptismal, marriage and other records of some local churches."

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© 2002-2007 BFB
First published: 22nd of January, 2002
Document URL: genealogy.torrens.org/BannValley/records.html
Last modified: Sat, 15 Apr 2017 11:05:02 BST