Looking for help with an Irish marriage

+3 votes
I have been on wikitree for a few years now and not asked for genealogical help before but I thought I would give this one ago in case someone has access to any church records that might throw up this marriage.

Hugh Moffatt married Jane Coulter, probably in Ireland. They gave birth to at least 5 children in Ireland between 1839 and 1849. Son Samuel was born in Ireland in 1848 and their next child Jane was born in Cheshire,  England in 1852 followed by Ann their youngest in 1854. It is her birth certificate that confirms Jane was nee Coulter. The children born in Ireland were Mary 1839, Hugh 1843, Rebecca 1845, James 1847 and Samuel 1849. These years are calculated for ages in the English census after they moved to Cheshire. I can't find a marriage on ancestry, findmypast or familysearch and I don't subscribe to any specialist Irish databases.

I have the records after the move to England it's the Irish marriage or any other Irish records that I am searching for.
in Genealogy Help by Earl Davis G2G6 Mach 2 (28.1k points)
One descendant did manage a Wikipedia entry


5 Answers

+2 votes
Best answer

As I have a subscription I did a quick check in the site rootsireland.ie which is a collaboration between the genealogy societies in all 32 counties in Ireland. I have found it a good source for records up to 1900 as well as the 1901 and 1911 censuses.  There are plenty of Moffat baptisms shown, including spelling variations picked up automatically. I found none with mother's name Coulter but these old records often attribute the husband's surname to the wife. If you have the time and inclination then a 24 hour unlimited use subscription is £9, 1 month for £23.  Good luck.
selected by Earl Davis
Thank you Michael.
+4 votes

Earl, have you tried this site: https://www.irishgenealogy.ie/en/

It is run by the government and does not require a subscription. 

by Lynda Crackett G2G6 Pilot (630k points)
Thanks Lynda. Yes I have tried that site before. I may be using it incorrectly but they seemed to have only one Jane Coluter marriage in their entire church records section despite the Coulter surname supposedly being fairly common in Ireland.
Earl, did you try surname variations?  That site is not good in catching variants when you run a search and have not figured out how to use wildcards on it.
I disagree with Leigh on the variants to some extent - it is pretty good at picking up many programmed variants (e.g. Lizzie for Elizabeth) and does have some fuzzy matching - I think dealing with the extent of variants possible with Irish names in the second half of the 19th century is some ask! It is a shame though it does not handle wildcards - probably to keep the searches manageable at their end.
+5 votes
Marriage registration didn't begin in Ireland until 1845.  There are records for non-Catholic marriages after 1845, and only after 1864 for Catholic marriages.  So if your birth years are right, it'll probably be very difficult to get the information remotely.  If you know the church denomination nation, that would help.  If you can guess the actual church, that would be a BIG help.
by Barry Smith G2G6 Pilot (220k points)
edited by Barry Smith
Barry. Thanks for taking the time to reply. I was asking for help with from anyone who might have access to any church records rather than civil registration. Sadly like a lot of Irish families recorded in later English records the family is only recorded as being from Ireland rather than being more specific about their actual place which is why I have been stuck on this line for about 15 years now. Once in England they don't appear in the local Anglican records so they might have been Catholic.

In the 1901 Census there were 492 Moffatts, made up of:

  • 168 Presbyterian
  • 130 Church of Ireland
  • 130 Roman Catholic
  • 23 Methodist
  • 20 Baptist

Coulters were predominantly Presbyterian or Church of Ireland, only about 10% were Roman Catholic.

So searching for Presbyterian registers in England might yield more.

Thanks John.
+3 votes
You might also try our page for Irish sources https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Space:Sources-Ireland-Province-County
by Richard Devlin G2G6 Pilot (341k points)
Thanks Richard.
+2 votes
The Catholic Parish Registers are your only hope. Only if you know the parish name.

by Valerie Kerr G2G6 Mach 1 (12.8k points)
Thanks Valerie.

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