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The Archives and Records Association, Ireland (ARAI) has launched Explore Your Archive 2017.

The week-long campaign, which runs from Saturday, 18 November to Sunday, 26 November 2017, celebrates the role of archives in preserving Irish history and aims to highlight the unique potential of archives to tell exciting stories, surprise people and bring communities together.

Run jointly with the Archives and Records Association in the UK, the campaign seeks to encourage people to engage with the items held in archives around the country and discover what life in Ireland was like in days gone by.

Late yesterday afternoon I spoke to the managers of It seems Monday's upload of additional GRO records was released to the public in error; a test site was supposed to be doing the rounds within the GRO, allowing any errors in function or delivery to be sorted out before it went live. Instead, it just went live.

Unfortunately, the test site had quite a few problems: an 'old style' index remains on the site, causing duplications; registration districts had gone awol in older index entries resulting in nil returns when searching by registration district; many of the new-release of records were not available, and where they were, they often were flying solo, ie without the image of the register entry.

The National Library of Ireland has secured funding for its Towards a Republic project, which will see the digitisation of some of the personal papers of the signatories of The Treaty in preparation for the centenary of the foundation of the State.

The funding is part of the Government's €2million handout to a new cultural Digitisation Scheme; it will be shared among a number of digitisation projects planned by National Cultural Institutions and cultural heritage organisations.

Expires 23 NovemberThis Thanksgiving, is offering a 20% saving on new membership subscriptions and DNA tests purchased as gifts. (Yes, you can purchase them for yourself as a gift... go on, you know you're worth it!)

Subscriptions: The discount is available only on 6-month and 12-month gift memberships (non-recurring). It is for new subscribers only and not for renewal of currect subscriptions. You select the date you want the subscription to start and provide only an email address of the recipient.

I found the time over the weekend to rummage around in the Dreadnought Seamen's Hospital Admissions and Discharges, 1826-1930, collection, released online last week by Ancestry.

The Dreadnought was originally a hulk moored in the Thames at Greenwich as a hospital for seamen. It was run by the Seamen's Hospital Society, and I wanted to look through the register collection because this was where one of my grandmother's sisters, Hester, trained as a nurse and died of cardiac arrest in 1926, just 26 years old, during an operation to remove her appendix.

Click for booking details and full scheduleOrganised by Loughrea Memorial Group in partnership with Galway County Council, a day conference – Galway 1917: Social Conditions & Political Change – will be held at the Loughrea Hotel & Spa on Thursday 16 November.

Six lectures, briefly noted below, will be presented during the day. An exhibition relating to the Connaught Rangers who were killed in 1917 in France and Flanders will be on display, and there will be a number of books for sale relating to the social and political change in Ireland during this period.

Over the last couple of hours, has been uploading another instalment of civil registration records, complete with images of birth, marriage and (possibly) death registers.

The upload is taking its time, and I can't say exactly what will be the final call, but so far I can confirm that the 1916 births (the rolling year from 100 years ago) are available, and the index + register image of marriage from 1869/1870 to 1881 seem to be going live in steady fashion (the 1882-1940 records were already fully online).

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