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Source Information

Ancestry.com. Ireland Topographical Dictionary, 1837 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2003.
Original data: Lewis, Samuel. A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. Vol. I. London, England: S. Lewis and Co., 1837.

About Ireland Topographical Dictionary, 1837

This database is an alphabetical dictionary of the topography of Ireland. It provides historical and statistical descriptions of several of Ireland's counties, cities, boroughs, corporate markets, post towns, parishes, and villages. This first volume contains descriptions of places named A through Gur. The second volume will be added to the database shortly. Gazetteers and topographical dictionaries like this one are very useful sources for genealogists because they help us locate and learn about the places our ancestors lived.

Some family researchers believe it is necessary to find an old map to locate an old town. An old map will not necessarily show all towns in existence when the map was printed because small towns might have been omitted.

A useful tool for locating towns is a gazetteer, which is a geographical dictionary that lists place names (for example, those of states, territories, counties, cities, towns, and townships) alphabetically for a geographical region. The type of information given in various gazetteers differs, but usually the state and county (and sometimes township) [for example, in U.S. gazetteers] are listed. This information will help to locate a place name on a map and to determine the town or county in which the major records (for example, vital, land, probate) are located.

Taken from Chapter 3: Geographic Tools: Maps, Atlases, and Gazetteers, Printed Sources: A Guide to Published Genealogical Records by Carol Mehr Schiffman; edited by Kory L. Meyerink (Salt Lake City, UT: Ancestry Incorporated, 1998).

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