This is the first in what may (or may not) become an ongoing saga. Dottie is fictional.
Dottie smiled as she spotted the Kevin Street Garda Station up ahead. That meant that she was almost at the National Archives of Ireland. She was enjoying the brief sunshine today after the downpour that happened in Dublin yesterday. Thank goodness she had been to Ireland before and knew to carry rain gear with her at all times. She loved being able to walk from “Gerry’s Place” the Air BnB she had rented for the week, but especially enjoyed it when the sun was out.
With only three more days of her vacation trip in Dublin, she needed to focus today. It was so difficult, there were so many wonderful documents in archive it was tempting to look at everything. Her focus this morning would be on the Berry family. While she had been given information in a family tree, she needed to prove the genealogical information. With the popularity of genealogy today, there was as much mis-information out there as there was good solid data.
Crossing the intersection at Bishop Street she ran lightly up the steps to the doors. Showing her reader ticket to the gentleman at reception, she quickly signed in and headed to the locker room to store her outdoor clothes and gear. She locked her gear in her favourite locker, two over on the right and three down from the top, and locked the clear glass door. Knowing she could use the pencils they provided in the reading room, she only kept her iPad and note paper with her and headed for the elevator.
Once through the door, Dottie picked up a pencil from the reception desk and headed to the right toward the testamentary records catalogues. Today she looked through the Wills cards. The small cards were stored in file drawers like the ones she used to see in the library when she was a child. “Imagine not having this information digitally yet, so many people are not aware it is here”. She didn’t expect to find much. Knowing about the Four Courts Fire in 1922 she knew that the chances of finding records that survived were pretty slim. But, nothing ventured, nothing gained.
She went directly to the “B”s and searched through cards. As they appeared to be in alphabetic order she jumped ahead to the “Ber” looking for Berry.
“Good golly, Miss Molly” she thought as she spotted a card with the right name and a year of 1816. She glanced over at the reception desk and saw that it was Fintan on duty. Fintan was in his twenties and eager to be helpful. She quickly pulled the card from the file, tipping the card behind it to mark its place and headed for the desk, glancing around on the way to select an open table for her request. Grabbing a yellow order docket slip she double checked with Fintan that she was requesting the right document. Confirmed all the details, she left the request with Fintan and hurried back to replace the card in the appropriate spot before she got into trouble for removing it.
Dottie placed her note paper on her selected desk to reserve her spot and then walked back over to the card files. She went back through the cards and looked at all the cards in the “B” drawer individually in case there were any that were misfiled. While she did find a few misfiled cards, which she put into their proper order, there were no other cards with the Berry name. She glanced over at her desk and noticed that the documents had arrived.
Opening the folder Dottie saw that there were multiple pages and it was a certified copy of the will and grant of Thomas Berry. It might be just the document she needed to confirm some of the ancestors in the Berry family. She took her time reading the pages, thinking to herself “what an absolute goldmine”. Not only had Thomas mentioned each of his living children in the twelve-page document, he mentioned his son that passed before he did, and a brother, as well as his sons-in-law.
After reading the will, Dottie set about taking pictures of the document. She used the provided weights to hold the document as flat as possible while taking pictures with her iPad. Tonight, she would upload those pictures to her Evernote account to ensure that she had a second copy on the cloud. She was looking forward to putting all the information on her computer once she was back in Canada in a couple of weeks. This trip was definitely proving to be well worth it as far as gathering genealogical proof was concerned.
She then returned the document to the returns desk in the small room next to the card catalogue. Then, Dottie spent the rest of the morning looking through the card catalogue for other families that she was researching without luck. However, she was happy with a morning well spent. Dottie smiled a satisfied smile headed down in the elevator thinking about where she would have lunch after picking up her gear from the locker.