Steven Smyrl is a professional genealogist who has been at the heart of Irish genealogy for over 30 years. He and Paul go back a long way. They reminisce about how Steven got involved in family history in Ireland and his early days in the profession. They also touch on his work on the unsuccessful campaign to have the 1926 Census released early. But coincidentally funding for the digitisation of that census was announced on the day this podcast went live.
Steven is somewhat taken aback by a compliment paid by Paul, but Paul ploughs on despite Steven’s proper show of humility. Protestant dissenting congregations are one of several areas of genealogy and history in which he has particular expertise. His book, Dictionary of Dublin Dissent (Dublin, 2009), is a major contribution to research in that area. His primary work is in probate research. He tells Paul about the television series Dead Money in which he and his genealogist brother, Kit Smyrl, were the stars of the show, tracing some interesting inheritance cases.
Steven is well known for his voluntary work in the field, especially with the Irish Genealogical Research Society and his professional organisation, Accredited Genealogists Ireland. However, few will know that he was instrumental in having the 1939 National Register for England and Wales released. Posterity will thank him for his involvement in having extra information added to death records in the Republic and in Northern Ireland from the 2000s forward. Steven Smyrl is involved in genealogy on all fronts and this chat could have gone on for hours.
Series Producer: Conor O’Hagan
Audio Supervisor: John Hughes
Link to Accredited Genealogists Ireland: https://accreditedgenealogists.ie/
AGI Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/AccreditedGenealogistsIreland
Link to the Irish Genealogical Research Society: https://www.irishancestors.ie/
IGRS Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IrishGenealogicalResearchSociety