Dublin City Library & Archive

WSC Map Conservation Project 2016

Heritage Council LogoDublin City Archives is delighted to announce that we have received a €4,000 grant from the Heritage Council of Ireland under the Heritage Management Project Scheme 2016 to conserve 23 Wide Street Commission Maps.

The maps date from the eighteenth century and document the work of the Wide Street Commissioners in moulding the development of Georgian Dublin. It includes maps relating to Sackville street (present day O’Connell street), College Green, and Dame street. The maps are historically significant, not only from a local and national perspective, but also because they reflect the European Age of Enlightenment and the Commissioners constant attempts to improve the city by the rational application of scientific and aesthetic principals.

Certificate in Oral History

Certificate in Oral HistoryThe Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Oral History will be offered at Dublin City Library and Archive, 138-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2 on Monday evenings from September 2016 until April 2017. The course consists of 70 hours part time and the course will equip participants with skills in the preparation and conduct of oral history projects, including best practice in the collection and archiving of oral history interviews. 

The closing date for course applications is 5.00 p.m. on Friday 16 September 2016.

Dear Friends and Fellow-Sailors, an introductory blog from Nelson's Head

Nelson's PillarDear Friends and Fellow-Sailors

I have recently been celebrating my 10th anniversary in Dublin City Library and Archive, where I have very comfortable quarters. I have a stout plinth for my head and a view across the Reading Room – it’s my job to keep my one good eye on the students – who are all very hardworking - maybe thanks to my supervision! They tell me I’m a valued member of staff and they couldn’t do without me – good to know I’m still so useful as I’m 207 years old.

W & R Jacobs Archives at Dublin City Library and Archive

JacobsOn Monday 22nd February 2016, a special tea party is being hosted by an tArdmhéara Críona Ní Dhálaigh at the Mansion House to mark the transfer by Valeo Foods of the archives of W & R Jacobs and the transfer of the Appleyard Collection by Douglas Appleyard to Dublin City Council.

The archives of W & R Jacob and Company, consisting of over 330 boxes, were acquired by Dublin City Library and Archive in 2012. Following a major cataloguing project they will now be opened for public access in the Reading Room of Dublin City Library and Archive at 138-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2.

Wide Street Commission Architectural Drawings (1757-1849)

Dublin Library EditionThe full set of Wide Street Commission architectural drawings have been conserved and digitised and are now available to view online. The Wide Streets Commission had the authority to determine and regulate the facades of buildings erected along the line of new streets developed by it. The Commission decided on the heights of buildings, the number of houses in a terrace, the materials to be employed and the type and spacing of windows. Builders had to conform to specifications and the Commission could, and did, order re-building where its instructions had been flouted.

As a by-product of its interest in and impact on the architecture of Dublin in the period 1757-1849, the Wide Streets Commission amassed a total of 60 elevations of buildings and terraces. The WSC Architectural Drawing Catalogue was prepared by Dr Mary Clark, City Archivist and published by Dublin City Council in 1988. It provides detailed description of the full set of architectural drawings in the archives of the Wide Street Commission. The catalogue is now being published online, along with an image gallery of the architectural drawings.

Dublin Remembers 1916 Programme

Dublin Remembers 1916To mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising, Dublin City Council has announced an exciting programme of commemorative events. You are encouraged to remember and reflect on the events of Easter Week 1916, which shook the capital’s streets 100 years ago.  An tArdmhéara Críona Ní Dhálaigh launched the Dublin Remembers 1916  programme on Wednesday, 13 January at Dublin City Library and Archive, Pearse Street, at a preview of the specially commissioned exhibition Citizens in Conflict, Dublin 1916.

The programme is packed full of lectures, talks by expert historians, exhibitions and conferences in Dublin libraries, City Hall, Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane and other venues in the city. This rich programme of events provides something for everyone. View the Dublin Remembers 1916 Programme of Events.

New Additions to the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive

Lieutenant Herbert Justin LemassThe Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association (RDFA) was established in 1996 to commemorate all Irish men and women who volunteered, served and died in the First World War. In 2005, the RDFA decided to place its archive with Dublin City Library & Archive, where it is available for public consultation in the Reading Room. The RDFA Archive is managed by Dublin City Archives.

Right: Lieutenant Herbert Justin Lemass

Just added to the Collection are

  1. Items relating to two brothers, Edwin and Herbert Lemass, who both served in the British Army during the First World War. Second Lieutenant Herbert Justin Lemass and Lieutenant Edwin Stephen Lemass were second cousins of Sean Lemass, one of the most prominent Irish politicians of the 20th century. At the time that Herbert, age 19, and Edwin Lemass, age 21, were in the trenches on the Western Front, their second cousin, Sean Lemass, age 17, was fighting the British in the General Post Office during the 1916 Easter Rising. Herbert dies at the Battle of the Somme on 23rd October, 1916, while Edwin, a barrister-at-law, went on to become one of Egypt's leading judges after the war.
  2. Volume 9 of the Monica Roberts Letters. The items contained were donated by Mrs Mary Shackleton, daughter of Monica Roberts, to the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association at Dublin City Library and Archive on 28 July 2014. The letters give vivid pen-pictures of conditions at the Western Front and reveal the courage of troops in the face of appalling circumstances.

O’Connor and O’Neill Family Archives re-telling life in the Liberties

Sean O'ConnorDublin City Library and Archives were given a boost, when An tArdmhéara Críona Ní Dhálaigh was formally presented with the family papers and genealogy materials of the O’Connor/O’Neill families going back to the 1750’s.  The presentation was made by Sean O’Connor, head of the O’Connor family at a ceremony today in Dublin’s Mansion House attended by members of the O’Connor and O’Neill families.

Right: Sean O’Connor  at his school, Francis street CBS, 1951

The O’Connor/ O’Neill family papers were assembled by Sean O’Connor with the help of archivist Ellen Murphy and City Archivist Mary Clark.  After much painstaking research, the family papers have now been presented to the city which was home to the two families. The donation helps to strengthen the Dublin City archives as a valuable record of social history including accounts of happy times and challenging experiences in the Dublin Liberties.

The Irish Theatre Archive, what a Treasure Trove!

Anna ManahanThe Irish Theatre Archive, held at Dublin City Library and Archive in Pearse Street, was founded in 1981 and now consists of over 250 collections, and 100,000 individual items. Included are collections deposited by theatres, theatre companies, individual actors, directors, costume and set designers, as well as theatre critics and fans. Collections can include theatre programs, handbills, posters, newspaper cuttings, stage managers books, production notes, costume and set designs, correspondence, administration files, scripts, photographs and recordings.

Right: Anna Manahan.

Jacob’s Biscuit Factory and the 1916 Rising

Bishop Street Factory[Update, 24 Nov 2015: Due to data protection reasons, information from Jacob's Biscuit Factory employee records which are less than 100 years old, will  be made available to direct family members only.  All requests regarding individual employees should be sent to cityarchives@dublincity.ie in the first instance. The cataloguing project will be completed by the end of December 2015 and we will start processing the email requests in January 2016.]

As part of its varied programme of activities for the Decade of Commemorations, Dublin City Library and Archive is currently in the process of cataloguing the records of Jacob’s Biscuit Factory which was acquired by Dublin City Archives in 2012.  Here is a sneak preview of some of the records which have thus far been identified which relate to the Easter Rising of 1916 and the occupation of the factory:

SEE IMAGE: Advertisement showing Bishop Street Factory,  Undated ©Valeo Foods, DCLA/JAC/09/241

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