Limerick Burial Register Online

Tuesday, June 2nd 2009

Limerick City Council has become the first local authority in the country to put its burial registers on-line.

Burial records for the city’s largest cemetery, Mount Saint Lawrence, dating back more than 150 years will now be easily available to the public over the internet.

Limerick City Council was eager to ensure that a preservation copy of these vital Limerick records was created and commissioned local firm Medrex Systems to microfilm the records and to convert these into digital format.

This means that it is now possible to access a copy of the original handwritten entries of burials in Mount St Lawrence cemetery, from 1855 onwards on Limerick City Council’s website,

Each entry in the record is handwritten and records the name of the person, the date of burial, the location of the grave, the age of the deceased and the last residence. With the click of a mouse, it is possible to turn the pages of the book to view the next set of entries.

Mount St Lawrence was first opened in 1849 when a new graveyard was needed in Limerick as a result of the both the 1830’s cholera epidemic and the Great Famine of 1845-1850.

“The register is a mirror to Limerick society from this time, as all sections of society were buried here,” said Limerick City Archivist, Jacqui Hayes.

“Every person buried has a one line entry and these persons came from every street and lane in Limerick. For many years the majority of entries on a single page are from the Limerick Union and Limerick Lunatic Asylum.

These were later known as St Joseph’s Hospital and the City Home. All strata of society were buried here and the registers record the burials of many former Mayors’ of Limerick, from Michael O’Callaghan and George Clancy who were killed during the War of Independence, to Jim Kemmy in recent times,” Ms Hayes added.

The registers are also important from a demographic point of view as they provide statistics for the changing life expectancy rates and death rates.

Mayor of Limerick, Cllr John Gilligan, said the burial registers are an absolutely vital record for all Limerick citizens whose relatives are buried in the city cemetery over the years.

“With the recent upsurge in popularity of family history, there is great public interest in these records,” he said. “Nationally the survival rate of burial registers is very patchy, as they are very vulnerable to accidental damage. It is wonderful that these records have survived and that the technology is now available to put these records on line,” he added.

Anton O’Carroll of Limerick based microfilm specialists, Medrex Systems, explained that the project involved creating a permanent microfilm copy of the burial registers, scanning these microfilmed images to digital format and printing out a paper version for daily use in the cemetery office.

“ All of us involved with the project in Medrex took a personal interest in it as we were dealing with the records of members of our own families as well as the public at large,” said Mr O’Carroll. “My grandfather on my mother’s side, Dan O’Connor , a brother of Batt O’Connor confidante of Michael Collins is buried there as is my other grandfather T.C.Carroll ( O’Carroll ) of T.C.Carroll and Sons that traded as a Stationers shop at, 122 O’Connell St, Limerick until 1968. You could say that I am a modern day Stationer,” Mr O’Carroll added.

Microfilm is a proven preservation strategy in use since the Boer War, and is a much safer medium than electronic formats. In recent years it has become possible to scan microfilm to digital format.

This project took advantage of these developments to ensure that a security copy of these vital records has been created and will be preserved in the City Archives while the images themselves can be made available on any computer over the internet.

For further details please contact

Laura Ryan
Communications Officer
Limerick City and County Council
Phone: 061-407100

Last update:19/02/2014