Wednesday, March 18, 2009

ProGenealogists, Inc. Helps Trace President Obama’s Irish Roots, Assists Clients in Obtaining Dual Irish Citizenship

NOTE from DearMYRTLE: The following was just received from our friends at, one of the leading research firms here in Salt Lake City, Utah. Please address all inquiries to

Salt Lake City, Utah - As the descendants of the Irish Diaspora and their friends celebrate St. Patrick’s, ProGenealogists, Inc., announced today that it helped trace President Barack Obama’s Irish roots back to Moneygall, County Offaly, Ireland with Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak.

The research tracing Obama’s Kearney ancestors from Ohio back to County Offaly was featured in Ancestry Magazine. In her article, “The Quest for Obama’s Irish Roots,” Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak wrote that she worked with Irish genealogy expert, Kyle Betit of ProGenealogists, Inc., to research President Obama’s family records in Ireland. President Obama wrote of his County Offaly roots in a letter for the dedication of the memorial of Annie Moore, a young Irish woman who was the first immigrant to enter America through Ellis Island in 1892. ProGenealogists, Inc., also assisted in the quest for the real Annie Moore with Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak!

In addition to offering genealogy research, ProGenealogists, Inc. is also currently assisting several of its clients to obtain dual Irish citizenship. ProGenealogists, Inc. Irish genealogy expert, Kyle Betit, leads a team of researchers in the United States and Ireland to help descendants of Irish immigrants gather the necessary documents needed to obtain an Irish passport. After working with several clients whom he has assisted in gaining dual citizenship, Mr. Betit reports that these clients can now live, work and travel freely in Ireland and the European Union. Many of these clients also feel a closer bond and connection to their Irish ancestral homeland by also being citizens of Ireland. More information about ProGenealogists, Inc. and their dual citizenship services can be found on the company’s website (

PLEASE NOTE NEW DEVELOPMENT REGARDING DUAL IRISH CITIZENSHIP: Under current law, deriving Irish citizenship by descent from an Irish-born great-grandparent is possible only in special circumstances. Comments by the Irish Prime Minister, Brian Cowen, suggest that the current guidelines used in granting Irish citizenship may be altered to include accommodations to some descendants of Irish-born great-grandparents. Mr. Cowan is visiting the United States this week and met with President Obama.

ProGenealogists, Inc. is a consortium of professional genealogists who specialize in genealogical, forensic, and family history research. The firm, in business for over 10 years, services thousands of professional, government, media, and individual clients worldwide. ProGenealogists, Inc. assists clients in several countries using its network of over 725 U.S. and International agents. The firm’s Irish research capabilities can trace diverse types of Irish ancestry from Scots-Irish Presbyterians (many of whom came to colonial America in the 1700s) to Irish Catholics (who fled the Great Famine in the 1840s and 1850s in huge numbers to New York City and other American and Canadian ports) to later immigrants of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. With Ireland’s diverse history marked by conflict, research and record finding can prove to be difficult, especially when trying to find elusive towns or parishes of origin in Ireland.

Finding these difficult records is a ProGenealogists, Inc. specialty; many records from Ireland are obtained at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and various repositories in Ireland. Irish Research Web Pages are maintained on the company’s website ( ) and include articles, pointers, techniques, links, and resources for tracing Irish ancestors.