Archaeology of 1916 Seminar

Dublin City Council hosts an archaeology morning seminar in the Wood Quay Venue, Dublin 8 on Wednesday, 14th December, 2016. The Seminar presents interesting results of an innovative project which set out to discover the surviving historical landscape of the city following the 1916 Rising.

The project took place earlier this year and was led by Archaeology and Built Heritage Ltd., a Smithfield-based consultancy. Using primary sources such as the witness statements collected from participants in the 1950s and the files of the Property Losses (Ireland) Committee, the project team examined ten of the lesser known sites of the Rising. The principal outcome of this work will be a GIS database which will be uploaded onto the heritage mapping maintained by Dublin City Council, where the project will see full publication in 2017.

“This is an exciting collaboration with partners UCD and cotemporary archaeology experts Archaeology and Built Heritage Ltd. It combines innovative archaeological research and survey with 3rd level training, to generate information for use by DCC in planning and development” said Dr. Ruth Johnson Dublin City Council City Archaeologist.

The approach was based on previous work undertaken by Franc Myles on Moore Street, where the final 24 hours of the Rising in the GPO was examined, leading to the discovery of the ‘tunnels’ dug between the surviving houses and a reappraisal of the ‘retreat’ from the GPO before Pearse’s surrender.

What was found elsewhere in the city was sometimes surprising; areas not known to have seen heavy fighting such as on Camden Street, displayed most of the physical evidence for bullet holes, where buildings thought to have been destroyed, such as the Linen Hall complex off North King Street, still retained substantial fabric.

The location of Clarke’s Dairy, a crucial outpost on Church Street which has been misidentified in all the historical sources, was ‘rediscovered’ as a traditional archaeological site, underneath the widened carriageway.

The project is funded by Dublin City Council, UCD and The Heritage Council and is an initiative between the Planning and Property Development Department and the School of Archaeology UCD.


For further information about the initiative please email or T: (01) 222 3090. Bookings can be made through

Notes to the Editor
Dr Ruth Johnson is the City Archaeologist for Dublin City Council since 2001. As City Archaeologist she plays a vital strategic role in the management and protection of the diverse archaeological resource of the city. She is the Project Manager, Chair of the Steering Group and a member of the Survey Team. Ruth has published numerous academic and popular articles and books in her capacity as a Viking and medieval scholar, most recently as co-editor of ‘Before and After the Battle of Clontarf: the Vikings in Ireland and Beyond’, (Fourcourts Press, 2015).