Jacob’s Biscuit Factory Archive

Printer-friendly version

Jacob's Seedless Fig RollsThe archives of W & R Jacob and Company were acquired by Dublin City Library and Archive in 2012.  Comprising both the business archives donated by Valeo Foods and the Appleyard Collection donated by Douglas Appleyard, the 330 boxes contain a wide range of records, relating to over 150 years of biscuit making in Dublin.  This archive represents a rich and significant contribution to the study of business and commercial life in Dublin in the late 19th and 20th centuries. It also offers valuable information about life in the community of over three thousand Dublin workers, mostly women, who were engaged at any given time during most of the company’s manufacturing period.  Following a major cataloguing project, the collection was opened for public access in the Reading Room of Dublin City Library and Archive in 2016.

General Factory Records

During cataloguing, the collection was arranged into different series such as administration, property, finance, engineering, manufacture, audiovisual, photographs, advertising, and artefacts   Summary information regarding the history of the company and the content of each series can be viewed at the collection level description (PDF, 533KB) .  For detailed descriptions of items in the collection, please consult the Jacob’s Biscuit Factory Archive Database in our Reading Room which has over 3,350 entries.

JAC/07 Jacob’s Photographs

The photograph series comprises 240 files containing 8,400 loose photographs, albums, and slides. These files can be viewed in our Reading Room. We have also initiated a pilot project to make each individual photograph available online. Images which have been digitised and catalogued to date can be viewed at: digital.libraries.dublincity.ie/vital/access/manager/Collection/vital:45269

JAC/04 Human Resources Records

Individual employee records are not accessible via Jacobs Biscuit Factory  Archive Database. Please read carefully our policy (PDF, 91KB) on accessing employee records and email us at cityarchives@dublincity.ie if you wish to make an enquiry.

Oral Histories

Dublin City Archives has carried out a number of oral history interviews to capture stories regarding Jacob’s Biscuit Factory. 

Ian Fox worked for Mack Kyle in Irish International Advertising for many years starting in the late 1960s. In this interview he recalls the origination of the 'Jim Figgerty' advertising campaign for W & R Jacob & Co and talks about the response it generated in the national media.

Gerry Griffin is the son of singer and actor Patrick Griffin who played the infamous Jim Figgerty in the Jacob's advertising campaign of the late 1960s and early '70s. He recounts stories of his fathers singing career before he took on the Figgerty role and his own experiences as a child when his father became identified as the famous missing fig roll filler.

Library blog articles/resources about Jacobs