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The Monica Roberts Collection Available Online!

Corporal Arthur William BrennanAt the outbreak of the First World War, Monica Roberts was a young upper-class woman who lived at Kelston, Stillorgan, Co. Dublin. Together with her friends, she set up a 'Band of Helpers to the Soldiers' to provide gifts and comforts to men at the Western Front, who were members of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers or the Royal Flying Corps. The group sent cigarettes and tobacco, socks and vaseline for tired feet, handkerchiefs, boot-laces, chocolate, peppermint, oxo and dried fruit. Monica Roberts included a letter with her gifts and the recipients replied to her, setting up a correspondence. The letters from the soldiers give a vivid picture of conditions at the Front, and also include comments on contemporary politics. Of particular interest are remarks from soldiers regarding the 1916 Rising. Included in the collection and available here online is Monica Roberts' contemporary diary from Easter Week 1916, which includes her eye-witness account of the Rising.

Remembering the First World War

The first shots of what became known as the First World War were fired on 28th July 1914. Over the next four years of war over 200,000 Irish men served in the British Army. Dublin City Public Libraries & Archive will be marking the Great War and Dubliners’ role in it, drawing on our extensive collections with a series of events and exhibitions, reading lists and digitisation projects.

Dublin City Electoral Lists (1908-12, 1915) Available Online

Electoral Rolls, before and after restorationWe're delighted to announce that we've digitised another three years of the Dublin City Electoral Lists and, in addition to the entries for the years 1908, 1909 and 1910, the 139,552 entries for the three years of 1911, 1912 and 1915 are now fully searchable on databases.dublincity.ie - a great resource for family history, local history and social history, now containing 280,717 records.

Access the Dublin City Electoral Lists (1908 to 1912, 1915) on databases.dublincity.ie.

Photo: Hard copy restoration, before and after view. See slideshow below for more images.

John Dillon Freedom Casket

Professor and Mrs. John Dillon with the freedom casket in City HallDublin's City Hall has obtained an Honorary Freedom casket on loan for display in the exhibition The Story of the Capital.

Right: Professor and Mrs. John Dillon with the casket in City Hall (click to view larger image)

This is a 19th century carved bog oak casket of sarcophagus form presented to John Dillon M.P. for the Honorary Freedom of the City of Dublin. Decorated with entwined basket panels with scenes of St. Patrick, the entire resting on four Irish wolfhounds surmounted by a silver figure of Freedom with a wreath. Signed J. McD. [John McDowell, silversmith and jeweller, Dublin: McDowell’s still operates as the Happy Ring House in O’Connell Street.]

Life-Long Learning Courses at Dublin City Library and Archive

Front Cover of Oral History Brochure

The Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Oral History, and the Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Local Studies are two courses, run by Dublin City Archives, which are offered to the public as part of Dublin City Council’s commitment to life long learning. Applications are now being accepted for both courses for the 2014-2015 academic year, with bursaries also available.

The courses will appeal to anyone who has an active interest in history, and want to learn how to engage with a variety of different research methods and sources, and to write up their findings in the form of a dissertation/research project.

Ann-Louise Mullhall, one of the participants on the Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Oral History in 2013-2014 has kindly provided us with a review of the course:

Dublin City Electoral Lists (1908-10) Available Online

Electoral Rolls, before and after restorationWe're delighted to announce that we've digitised another two years of the Dublin City Electoral Lists and the entries for the three years of 1908, 1909 and 1910 are now fully searchable on databases.dublincity.ie.

Commemorating Clontarf: The Battle and its Legacy

Battle of Clontart Milennium 1014-20142014 is the millennium of the Battle of Clontarf, which took place on Good Friday 23 April 1014. Commemorating Clontarf: the battle and its legacy was the theme of the City Hall lunchtime lecture series this April. It was standing room only at each of these popular lectures. So in case you missed them we are giving you the chance to listen back to two fascinating lectures. Dr Colm Lennon's lecture explores how the legend of Brian Boru and the battle of Clontarf has been adopted as a means of advancing different ideologies throughout Irish history, and how modern scholarly research using antiquarian sources and textual and scientific research are helping separate fact from myth. Dr Howard Clarke re-examines the reputation of Queen Gormlaith and Brian Boru while looking at the rules of marriage, and the bewilderingly complicated nature of the relationships between some of the key players in the battle of Clontarf.

The City Hall lecture series is organised by Dublin City Archives.

‘I met the boys in Gollypoly’ : World War I Collection

Front Cover of Gallipoli Memories DiaryA new collection from the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive is now available to view in the Dublin City Library and Archive Reading Room. The collection, ‘The Gunning Brothers: Gallipoli and the Somme’, contains the records of two Enniskillen brothers, George Cecil and Frank Douglas Gunning, who fought at the battle of Gallipoli during the First World War.  Their diary, entitled ‘Gallipoli Memories’ provides a blow-by-blow account of their experiences during the Gallipoli campaign and reflects a shift from their sense of adventure and excitement to sorrow, hopelessness and despair.

Prior to the War, the brothers worked as bank clerks. George Cecil enlisted into the ‘D’ Company, 7th Battalion of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers following the outbreak of war in 1914, and his younger brother Frank, followed him shortly after, for fear of missing out on the adventure.  The two men trained at the Curragh and in 1915 they fought in the Gallipoli campaign. The conditions they faced were very harsh, with a severe water shortage exasperated by the intense heat of the sun.

Dublin City Archaeological Archive Formally Opened

Dublin City Archaeological ArchiveThe Dublin City Archaeological Archive [DCAA], first launched in July 2008, was last night formally opened to the public by the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Councillor Oisín Quinn. The DCAA originated as an action of the Dublin City Council Heritage Plan 2002-2006 and is managed jointly by Dublin City Archaeology, Dublin City Archives and Dublin City Council’s Heritage Office. The DCAA’s remit is to preserve records arising from archaeological investigations conducted in Dublin City by archaeologists working in the private sector, with special reference to excavations carried out before 2004.

Create a Digital Memory on Digital Dublin Day

Red corner shop DublinDublin Digital Day Event, Grafton Street, Friday, 8th March.

Create a digital memory, using your old photographs, on Digital Dublin Day, Friday 8th March. 

Do you have some old photographs of Dublin or Dubliners lying around at home? Perhaps a snapshot of friends meeting under Clery's Clock? Or photographs that show Dublin shops, pubs or other buildings in the background?

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