Birth and Baptismal Records for Co. Cork

I was recently asked if it was easy to locate a person in Co. Cork, if you had their exact date of birth in 1830. My answer was: “No, it is not easy.”

Why did I say this? Well, civil records started generally in Ireland in 1864 so the church records are all you have to go on up to then except for Church of Ireland marriages which were registered from 1845 onwards. (Mormon site) has the Irish Civil Records Index from 1864 to 1958. Update!!! has an enhanced civil records index. [updated 4th July 2014]

Church Records for Cork are available on [paying site] and [free].

The former link is to the Mallow Heritage Centre (online) which has the Roman Catholic church records for the Diocese of Cloyne. It also has Church of Ireland records. You have to pay for each record but you can search for free, once you register. This site lists the parishes for which it has records. Of course, some parish records didn’t start till after 1830!

The second link is to and it has free church records for South, South West Cork and North West Cork (where the Catholic Parish is actually in the Diocese of Kerry). Availability of records is listed on the site…note it is not a complete set of records. It does have records for some of Cork City too but some areas of the city are excluded. That is another story (Sin scéal eile)!

So, searching for a person by date of birth in 1830, is not straightforward. You might be lucky but you would need to know the parents’ names to know if you have found the right person or not. Knowing the location helps but often people who are researching do not know this. Using land records such as the Tithe Applotments (1820s-1830s) and Griffith’s Valuation (1850s) can help locate the surname or first name-surname combinations. Later, the 1901 and 1911 Censuses can help.

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8 Responses to Birth and Baptismal Records for Co. Cork

  1. Barbara Holt says:

    I found your reply re Cork records very clear and succinct up to the point where you mention that the balance of Cork City records was “another story”. I have read somewhere they were going to be put on the website Are we still waiting for that to happen? Or are negotiations about who will publish them still on-going? Any information would be gratefully received as I live in New Zealand and may have missed something.

  2. mjordan says:

    Hi Barbara,

    Thank you for your comment. As far as I know there are no negotiations regarding the North Parish Catholic Church records (and the other parishes in the Deanery of Cork which are not online) going on. It is deadlocked. The Catholic Bishop of Cork appears to control the situation and is not giving permission for these records to go online.

  3. Ed McCarty says:

    Hi Margaret,
    Have you checked out the baptismal database at
    It looks like they have gotten access to the Cork RC Diocese records (including those of the North Cathedral).
    Too bad they’re holding the child(ren)’s names hostage. Still better than nothing. The information request form is kind of primitive and the fee schedule is a bit confusing.
    I had to laugh a bit when I read the website page discussing the database, where the word “prosperity” was used. I think they probably meant posterity.
    Best regards,
    Ed McCarty


    • mjordan says:

      Hi Ed,

      Yes, I do know of Thanks for the reminder. Also, the hard copy of the index to the North Parish (St. Mary & St. Anne) is in the Cork County Library (next to the Cork County Hall). It is a pity that the powers that be can’t move things forward to make these church records fully available online.

  4. Maureen Pova says:

    Hi Margaret, Was surprised to see my thanks up there re. Burial of Coppingers at St Anne’s Shandon. Have tried for years all I can find online and written to people emailed Libraries etc to find more about another Coppinger(and FitzGerald). My Gr Gr Gr Grandparents MauriceFitzGerald M.D. born Castle Richard/lived Killeagh to Richard Fitzgerald and Margaret Ronayne and wife Mary Anne Coppinger dau. of William Coppinger and Mary Gould, married at St Finbarr’s 20/11/1791. First child Mary baptised there 1793. My Gr Gr Grandfather Richard born 1794 and sister born 1800/01. Cannot locate Baptisms. Then after Charlotte’s birth parents just disappear. Maurice does not appear to have studied at Trinity, so abroard? Can you suggest any way I can locate their life after that, death and burial place. That’s asking a lot I know but having tried all I can online and through contacts feeling desperate. I live in Australia. You seem so knowledgeable I hope you will have a good suggestion. Thanking you, Maureen Pova nee Fitzgerald

  5. mjordan says:

    There may be relevant lists of medical doctors at the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland. They would list his qualifications and where obtained. Also, Edinburgh University may be where he studied. Other than that, try for headstone transcriptions and for deaths (after 1864).


    • Maureen Pova says:

      Thanks Margaret, I have already contacted Edinburgh and three Continental Unis. No result. I now know that an apprenticeship was served for an Apothecary, maybe an answer. Have commissioned a search with RC of S. Familysearch has been searched with nor result nor on Ancestry. Historicgraves also nil. Thank you for your advice Regards Maureen

  6. Ann Smiddy says:

    Hi Maureen, My GrandMother and her siblings were born at CastleRichard on the farm beside the castle. One of my Father’s cousins (Gould) married Morrison and now the Morrison family reside there. I have been advised that the Gould’s originated from Doneraile, Cork and were wine merchants in Lisbon. Does any of this ringa bell with you? Kind regards, Ann

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