About Us and A Letter from Ireland.

Mike and Carina Collins of A Letter From Ireland

Welcome to A Letter from Ireland.


Let me guess - you’ve been interested in tracing your Irish Heritage and Family History for some time now.


Maybe you've already travelled to Ireland? Perhaps you wonder if you will ever get here?


What you DO know is that your ancestors left Ireland for a better life - bringing with them their values and beliefs, many of which were passed to you and your own family.


Since 2013, we've shared our weekly "Letter from Ireland" and it has attracted over Two Million people of Irish descent around the world. They find that our Letters, Blog posts, Videos, books and Podcasts help them to understand what life was like for their Irish Ancestors.


For some, this information provides a rich backdrop to help with research on Ancestry Record sites. For others, the Letter connects them with their Irish roots in a very real and visceral way.


Here are just some reasons why some of our readers keep coming back to "A Letter from Ireland" for more:


“Trace your surname, discover where your ancestors may have lived and step into this fascinating and beautiful land that we love”. Sandy Laferriere.


“If you have Irish blood running through your veins, or even if you are just interested in Ireland, this site is essential.” Patty McCoy.


“You and Carina are melding a very important aspect of Irish history and heritage to our personal genealogical endeavors. Thanks for bringing it all to life for us!” Jack Healy.



Now, I think it’s time to introduce ourselves! We are Mike and Carina Collins - a husband and wife team based in County Cork, Ireland.


Our Irish Heritage adventure started when we noticed many people asking questions on Facebook about Irish surnames and the homelands of their Irish Ancestors.


We started to answer with our local knowledge - and those answers took the form of a weekly email called “A Letter from Ireland”.


In each Letter, we share stories of counties, surnames and heroic Irish individuals who made new lives for themselves across the world - often in the harshest of circumstances. Sound like any of your Irish ancestors?


Today, we travel around Ireland - gathering stories and sharing them with you through our weekly letters, blog posts, videos and podcasts.

Would you like to see the Letter and Podcast survive and thrive for the future - and receive some personal benefits along the way?

Recent Posts

facebook8 - What's Your Name in Irish?

What’s Your Name in Irish?

Do you know your given name in Irish? Many popular names have an Irish equivalent – names like Seán for John, Máire for Mary and so on. And then there are some slightly more challenging ones. Let’s have a look at some of these names today. Before we start, if you don’t see your name…

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34153516 m - Irish Surname Evolution.

Irish Surname Evolution.

We had a very interesting reaction to last week’s letter where I went through just some of the old Gaelic family names and their links to certain professions such as Medic, Judge, Poet and so on. I asked you to let me know if you had any of these names in your family – and…

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facebook42 - One Last Trip Back to Ireland

One Last Trip Back to Ireland

Some of the most popular letters we send out each Sunday are those of our own readers. In today’s letter, I would to share a wonderful story that Leslie Baldwin shared a few weeks back. Over to Leslie: “Good morning Mike! Thank you for all the lovely letters you send. I have learned so much…

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Cormac Bard copy - The Irish Bard of the Hooley

The Irish Bard of the Hooley

Over the past weeks on this Letter, I’ve mentioned specific family surnames that were associated with old Celtic professions. Among the names mentioned we had “Ward” and “Shields”, both old Irish Bardic surnames in days gone by. These Bards underwent seven years of intensive training – and were in great demand from the Irish Chieftains…

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Irish Citizenship

Obtaining Irish Citizenship – From Movie Stars to the Rest of us (#202)

In this episode we talk about Irish citizenship through a story about a movie star and director you may know.

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