As part of the Ordnance Survey mapping of Ireland in the 1830s, they envisioned memoirs of each parish, covering the landscape, buildings, historic sites, landed estates, population statistics and information about the people of the parish. The project was abandoned after Ulster was completed.
What was left behind was an invaluable tool for understanding the counties and parishes which were covered. For each parish surveyed there is a detailed commentary which provides an important pre-Famine look at society in Ireland.
These Memoirs were published by the Institute of Irish Studies, the Queen’s University of Belfast in association with the Royal Irish Academy in their 40 volume series Ordnance Survey Memoirs of Ireland (1990-2002) and includes counties Antrim, Armagh, Donegal, Down, Fermanagh, Londonderry, Tyrone, South Ulster: Cavan, Leitrim, Louth, Monaghan as well as Sligo. These can be purchased from many commercial venders including GlobalGenealogy: www.globalgenealogy.com
Originally this project was to also include notes on emigrants including seasonal harvest workers bound for England and Scotland who worked in and around the ports of Liverpool and Glasgow. Before abandoning this part of the project, the team had recorded emigrants leaving for counties Antrim and Londonderry. These have been published in Brian Mitchell’s Irish Emigration Lists, 1833‑1839: Lists of Emigrants Extracted from the Ordnance Survey Memoirs for Counties Londonderry and Antrim (Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1989): www.genealogical.comThe emigrant lists are arranged by parish with a general index to all names. The records give name, age, year emigrated, townland of residence, destination and religion.
Additional information on the Ordnance Survey and the Memoirs can be found on the Royal Irish Academy website: www.ria.ie/library/special-collections/manuscripts/modern-manuscripts/ordnance-survey-of-ireland-(1).aspx and on Bill Macafee’s website: www.billmacafee.com/otherrecords/osmemoirs.htm