Group Lecture

About Us

ABC Family History Association is all about making connections!  Our members have some connection with Northern Ireland, whether they live there or their family came from there, no matter how long ago.  We run family history courses to teach people from our area and throughout the world how to find the connections between us and know who our ancestors were, where they came from, what they did and how they lived.  We offer regular talks,  workshops and visits. Members can also take part in projects to use those skills and share results. Each year we publish a book written by our members based on the results of our current project. We love to welcome those from overseas to our area and help them get the most from their trip to their ancestral homeland!

Join Us

You can join ABC Family History Association as an Online Member who can enjoy our web page, online talks, family history courses and workshops and start or take part in projects, or you can take out one of our local Membership categories for individuals, couples and students who can also attend events we organise in Northern Ireland, which will be well publicised on this page. Organisations who support our purposes can take out a Corporate Membership.  Come and join us!

Hand Pile of Happy Group

Article Contributed by Member FM10



Stay in the Know

Planting a Tree to Commemorate the Platinum Jubilee

ABCFHA have planted a Sweet Gum Tree on the lawn at Ballinteggart House to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.  A commemorative plaque is being prepared and will be placed at the tree. Pictured on the right, beside the tree, are Helen and Philip Troughton, owners of Ballinteggart House, with a framed photograph presented to them by Chairperson, Joy Smith.  The photo is of Philip's Great Grandfather and his 2 brothers, and was given to us by one of our members, Pooler Clements, who it turns out is Philip's 3rd cousin. Pooler's Great Grandfather is one of the brothers in the photograph.

Helen and Philip with tree.jpg

'Our Family Stories' Project - NEW!

We have now launched our second major project, to run between January and the end of June 2022.  Members are invited to write up short stories of any of their ancestors, whether from many generations ago or more recently, and we will publish a book of these stories in the Autumn.  Members can receive guidance by emailing and by checking out the information in the Members Only Area.

Stories can be as short as 400 words or as long as they need to be and if they can be accompanied by a photograph or family tree image, then so much the better!  The ancestors may be from Northern Ireland or indeed anywhere in the world - the important thing is that they are the ancestors of our members and we are preserving these family stories for future generations by publishing them in book form.  We already have tales of a policeman/fireman in Londonderry in the 1800s; a local grocery store in Bangor West from 1930 - 1970; a great story of Wee Billie, an unruly chap from Creeveroe, Armagh 1826-1909; the ups and downs of the Reverend Septimus Tebay in Lancashire in the 1800s .....and much, much more to come!

Brackagh Photography Project - Book now published!

All orders have now been fulfilled but you can still order this 130 page plus book. 

Details are here.   


Below is a photograph of Donna Fletcher, one of our members, presenting Jackie McIlroy with a hardback copy of the book.  Jackie gave us permission to use the glass plate negatives for our project and we know he is very pleased with the outcome.


New Family Research Section in Members Only Area

This new section is designed to enable members share their research within our member community, with the hope that it will assist others in their own research.  We are therefore looking for contributions to this section from our members, however short or long.  The first shared research comes all the way from Karen, a member in Australia, whom we thank for her contribution, ably assisted by her cousin in London!


The Taylor Family of Derrycory -  available in our Members Only area

Karen has also sent us another great piece of research - the identification of over 50 members of the Taylor family who are buried in Grave 350 at Drumcree Church of Ireland


Grave 350 at Drumcree Church of Ireland - available in our Members Only area 

Don't Overlook Books!

Evelyn Gardiner, our Projects and Publications Manager, has written a piece about what we can find in old books to help us in our family research.  She has begun to transcribe the Appendices from Captain Richard Linn's 'History of Banbridge' - Appendix 1 lists the tenants from Ballyvally in the 1700s and there are 16 more Appendices to come.  Maybe one of your ancestors is there?  Members can access this new resource by clicking HERE.  Many thanks to Evelyn for this great new and unique resource!  Update:  Appendix 2 now available!


Articles by Members



ABC Family History Association is buzzing!

Adult Education Course



ABC Family History Association organises short family history courses and workshops from 30 minute online courses to 1 day face-to-face courses, open to all but with lots of free courses for members.  We also offer bespoke courses to other organisations for their members. There are courses for beginners and more advanced researchers and we love to help young people gain the skills to take the first steps in finding out about their family history. 

Online Workshop


Using the Technology

ABC Family History Association

offers regular hybrid talks, where some members can be in Bleary Business and Community Centre and others can join them for the talk through Zoom.  Our talks cover a wide range of topics in family and social history and are delivered by experts in Northern Ireland, across the UK and further afield and also by our own members.   We generally have around 8 hybrid talks per year.

Our Programme is on the news page.  Join us to find out more!

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One-to-One Support

With this initiative, ABC Family History Association's goal is to help you with your family research.  This may be through advice regarding the next steps to take, suggesting taking a family history course, showing how to use various web sites, assisting with presentation of research - including topping up the necessary computer skills.  Request an hour of personal support from one of our volunteers and in return please consider a small additional donation to our funds.



Building a Community

Local research projects in which ABC Family History Association members can participate are a great way of finding out how we connect and can lead to improved understanding and better community relations.  A project may be building your own family tree, trying to break down a 'brick wall' in your family tree, doing a One Place Study, a DNA project, transcribing church records and lots more, and we love to work alongside other organisations in local projects.



Fun Trips!

ABC Family History Association organises visits to a variety of places within Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.  Trips may be short local visits to a museum or heritage centre, for example, or a local guided walking tour. We may also venture further afield.  In June each year we hope to offer a Saturday trip, culminating in a meal together, for which additional payment would be required.  This enables members to spend quality time together, and enjoy a new place.



Using the Science

ABC Family History Association encourages you to consider the DNA testing which is now available from many different companies.  DNA results can help to break down your 'brick walls' in research and find new family members, helping to connect us all.  We explain the different DNA tests available, where to upload your DNA, help you to consider the implications of what you might find out and run courses to assist with the analysis of your DNA results.  Join us to find out more!


Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon

Borough Council Area

This is our Gallery of Members' Images of the ABC area. 

Click on an image to 'like' it! 

Email us your own images if you'd like to have them featured here


We'd love to show members' photos of places in ABC in our Gallery - please make sure you own the copyright of the image and email it with details to 

Family History Photographs

"We are as we are
they were as they were”