Prior to 1858 the Church of Ireland was responsible for administering all testamentary affairs. The original wills were lost in the destruction of the Public Record Office in Dublin in 1922. However, indexes to these destroyed wills do exist and are available in the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, in addition to a large number of surviving abstracts and duplicate copies. Wills for the Bready area are included in the index volume for the diocese of Derry. There are also some wills for the district in the index to wills probated at the Prerogative Court which dealt with larger estates. The following database includes pre-1858 wills for the parishes of Donagheady and Leckpatrick from both the index to Derry wills and the index to Prerogative Court wills. If an abstract or duplicate copy of a will survives in the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland the reference to it is provided.
Old age pension claims
The old age pension was introduced on 1 January 1909 for those over seventy years of age. For many people born before 1864, when the state registration of births began in Ireland, it was necessary to refer to 1841 and 1851 census returns in order to prove their age and therefore entitlement to the pension. A volume based mainly on surviving old age pension claims was compiled by Josephine Masterson and is entitled Ireland: 1841/1851 Census Abstracts (Northern Ireland). This database includes the surnames and townlands for the parishes of Donagheady and Leckpatrick for which 1841/1851 census material survives from old age pension records. The page number refers to Masterson’s book where fuller information can be found.
The Flaxgrowers’ List, 1796
In 1796 as part of a government initiative to encourage the linen industry in Ireland, free spinning wheels or looms were granted to farmers who planted a certain acreage of their holdings with flax. This database includes the names of those who were named in the printed lists of applicants for looms or spinning wheels for the parishes of Donagheady, Leckpatrick and Glendermot (Clondermot).