The North of Ireland Family History Society

Fostering interest in family history since 1979

When a history group was formed in Bangor in 1979, nobody could predict that 25 years later it would be part of the North of Ireland Family History Society with ten other branches and hundreds of members worldwide!

The objective of the NIFHS is to foster interest in family history, with special reference to families who have roots in the north of Ireland, wherever they may be now.

The NIFHS is a registered charity, depending on the support of amateur researchers and volunteers to run the organisation. It is not a research agency, although the NIFHS can give advice on who to contact.

There are two different types of membership. Branch members usually join and attend meetings at their nearest branch and elsewhere. Each branch has a varied programme of specialist speakers, research evenings, trips to record offices, visits to the NIFHS library, and much more. The subscription for annual branch membership includes two issues of the journal North Irish Roots.

Associate membership is for people who are unable to attend branch meetings but wish to be involved in the society. The annual subscription entitles them to two issues of North Irish Roots, and also to submit a profile form, outlining their interests, queries and offers of reciprocal research. This information is subsequently published in the journal.

The NIFHS has a reference library at Park Avenue, Belfast. Its collection contains most of the Ordinance Survey six inch maps of the first half of the twentieth century for counties Antrim, Down, Armagh, Fermanagh, Tryrone and Londonderry, runs of the Belfast and Ulster Directory, the Derry and Antrim Yearbook, church registers and histories, family histories, volumes on gravestone inscriptions, a large selection of periodicals, and Irish journals such as Clogher Record, Familia, Irish Family History Journal, and the Upper Ards Historical Society Journal. It also contains various microfiches, microfilms and cds. Admission is free but the NIFHS welcomes donations.