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Conolly baptism in Cork confirmed by letter but no record


New member
After a long search, I found a letter (attached) from Rev. William Magill confirming that my wife's great grandfather William Wellington Conolly was born in Cork on 18 June 1852 and baptised on 26th June. I contacted the Presbyterian church in Cork but whilst they confirmed the signature of the priest, they could find no baptismal record.

Was it normal to write such a confirmatory letter, perhaps in lieu of a certificate?

It mentions his late mother, so presumably she died in childbirth.

I am new here - so welcome any advice?


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Regimental ?

... of the 1st Royals ...

I've seen baptisms in the form of a letter but they have all been attached to a page of the Baptismal Register.
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Yes, the father Daniel Conolly was a Quarter Master Sergeant in 1st The Royal Reg Of Foot (2 B).

The red lettering is the index of the Civil Service, as this document was submitted as evidence of the date of birth when William joined the Civil Service in London. Daniel Conolly also swore an oath to confirm the date of birth.
That type of letter was fairly common. Pre-printed baptismal forms came in later for many churches. Prior to that if you wanted confirmation of your baptism this sort of document was the answer. (Birth registration only started in Ireland in 1864 so prior to that a baptism record was often the only evidence of age.