Whether it's the luck of the Irish you're after, or you want to put a little English on your ancestry, set sail with these sites.
Access to Archives
The latest update to this catalog of English records in 416 repositories brings its reach to 10.2 million records, dating from the eighth century to today.
Burke's Peerage Online $
Feeling noble? This redesigned site covers more than 1 million names in more than 15,000 records of UK gentry and peerage, historical families of Ireland, European royalty and even US presidential families. Four hours cost 15.95 pounds (about $31), or get a year for 64.95 pounds (about $128).
Family History Online $
This British Federation of Family History Societies site lets you search more than 67 million records including parish registers, memorial inscriptions, censuses, poor law documents and newly added gravestone photos. Searching is free, but you'll have to pay to view actual entries, starting at 5 pounds (about $10).
Now topping 500 million records, this subscription site recently added 10 million records from the National Burial Index to its collection of vital records, censuses (1841, 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891) and other England and Wales data. Subscription packages range from about $29.50 for 30 days to $177 annually, or choose a pay-per-view option.
As the name implies, this free volunteer site offers birth, marriage and death records—more than 186 million in all—from 1837 to 1933. Sibling sites are similarly generous with 19th-century censuses and 4.2 million parish records.
Think of this classic site as the RootsWeb for England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. You get how-to help, a nifty mapping gazetteer, databases and more. GENUKI is a must-bookmark for genealogy in the UK and Ireland.
Ireland's History in Maps
A history lesson through cartography, this collection of nearly 300,000 words in 80 documents spans BC to the 1840s.
National Archives of Ireland
The archives is digitizing the Irish national censuses of 1901 and 1911, beginning with the 1911 Dublin city and county enumerations. The whole project, totaling about 9 million entries, aims to be complete by mid-2009.
Ordnance Survey: Get-a-Map
Pinpoint your UK ancestors on the map with this slick site that combines six separate data products to generate printable color maps.
Origins Network $
The Irish Origins section of this network (get 72 hours of access for around $9, or a month for about $18) offers the richest rewards, including Griffith's Valuation, the 1851 Dublin City Census and an Irish Wills Index (1484 to 1858). It's closely followed by British Origins' databases ($13 for three days or $18 per month) containing nearly 50 million names. The free Scottish Origins does a special Scot-centric search of the International Genealogical Index on FamilySearch.
This government-affiliated online collection of some 50 million church, vital, census and probate records includes some as far back as 1553. Access requires investing in page credits, starting at about $12 for 30 credits valid for 30 days. You can use the Wills and Testaments index (1513 to 1901) free, but viewing digital images costs about $10 per document.