Barack Obama's ancestors found in the Landed Estate Court records

As you can see on RTE 1’s Nationwide special this evening at 7pm the breakthrough in the research into Barack Obama’s Irish ancestry came from the Landed Estate Court records!

The Landed Estates Court records are exclusive to findmypast Ireland and this is the first time they have ever been made available online.

They are an important source for Irish family history, as they provide extensive information about land occupation in the mid-nineteenth century, often including information back to the 18th century. In the case of Barack Obama this Landed Estate Court record provided the breakthrough in finding the missing link between Falmouth Kearney, Obama’s 2nd great-grandfather who set sail for America on the 20th March 1850, and the rest of the Kearney family line in Moneygall, Co.Offaly. You will notice the names of William and Joseph Kearney at the end of this record, Joseph being Falmouth’s father.

The Landed Estate Court records were printed to facilitate the sale of bankrupt estates (see the sale notice for the Kearney estate here) and include information about tenants, the lots they rented, the terms of their tenancy, as well as a map specifying the boundaries. More than 500,000 tenants are recorded in these documents dealing with more than 8,000 estates throughout the country.

The Rentals also usually include a map to situate the estate or lot in relation to the surrounding countryside, and often also a detailed map of the lot itself. You can see the map of Barack Obama’s ancestors plot to the right. In the case of urban property, you will find a village or town-plan. is the only place to find the Landed Estate Court records online so why not try to find your own family in Landed Estate Court records now by clicking here!

Barack Obama’s ancestors plot
Barack Obama’s ancestors plot

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