Find your ancestors in Ireland, Land Commission Advances, 1891-1920

What can these records tell me?

Land ownership is one of the most enduring flash points in Irish history, from the widespread confiscations of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries through to the evictions on the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. These records are a transformative moment in that history and document the moment that landlordism came to end in the Irish countryside.

As a consequence of the Land War from 1879 the British government established the Land Commission initially with the intention of fixing rents via the Land Law (Ireland) Act 1881. It became quickly clear that this wouldn’t be enough and so the government began a scheme to allow tenants to buy out their farms from landlords with financial assistance from the government. Under the terms of these acts around 13.5 million acres, the vast majority of the farm land of Ireland, was acquired by occupying tenants prior to Independence.

The information contained includes:

  • Purchaser’s name
  • Seller’s name
  • Townland
  • County
  • Acreage: in acres “a”, roods “r” and perches “p”
  • Rental valuation: in pounds “£”, shillings “s”, and pence “p”
  • Tenement valuation: in pounds “£”, shillings “s”, and pence “p”