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Clare Tithe Applotment Books Transcription Project

The Project:

Parishes & their Townlands
Status of Parishes
Guidelines for Transcribing
What's New

The Books - Parish Index

The Books - Surname Index

The Volunteers

Clare Mailing List.


The Tithe Applotment Books
The Tithe Applotment Books (TAB) were compiled between 1823 and 1837 in order to establish the amount landholders should pay towards the upkeep of the Church of Ireland. The taxable land in each parish was surveyed, giving the names of the occupiers of land in each townland, the acreage and class of land they held, and the amount of taxes (tithes) they were liable for. The original manuscript books are held in the National Archives in Dublin. The Tithe Applotment Books are an important pre-Famine source for family history and landholding patterns, but do not give information on the landless or those living in settlements. They also document the pre-Ordnance Survey townland names, many of which have now disappeared.

The Project Background
The Clare Tithe Applotment Books Transcription Project aimed to make the names of landholders and landlords listed in the Tithe Applotment Books for County Clare available online. The Project came about as a result of a discussion on the Clare mailing list of the Rootsweb genealogy website, where people interested in Clare genealogy were discussing possible ways of getting more Clare genealogical data online. An approach was made by Paddy Casey, a Rootsweb member, to Clare County Library in January 2004, which agreed to co-ordinate the project, under the management of Maureen Comber and Anthony Edwards, assisted by Jackie Dermody and Ciara Barry.

Clare County Library divided the parishes into manageable blocks. Volunteers were sought to transcribe copies of the original documents. Volunteers were asked to transcribe data in blocks of townlands and could select which lot of townlands they wished to transcribe. Within four months of the commencement of the project, all lots had been assigned to volunteers. Guidelines for volunteers were developed by the library, and by feedback from the earliest set of volunteers. Data returned by volunteers (in a variety of electronic formats) was checked, converted to HTML and posted on the Library’s website by Library staff. A record of the progress of the project was maintained on the website, and a chronological guide to posted parishes was also maintained. The final two parishes were uploaded on the 4th July 2005.

The response to the library's call for volunteers was overwhelming, and extremely encouraging. It showed what can be achieved in a short space of time by co-operation between volunteers from all parts of the globe, and a public institution such as Clare County Library. The Tithe Applotment Books for County Clare would not now be available online, free of charge, without this co-operation. It is indeed an achievement to be proud of for all concerned. Clare County Library is extremely grateful to all who volunteered to participate in this project. Go raibh míle maith agaibh go léir.