John McGahern’s Dublin: the 23rd Annual Sir John T. Gilbert Commemorative Lecture will take place on Thursday 23rd January 2020 at 6pm.The lecture will be presented by Professor Frank Shovlin, University of Liverpool, at Dublin City Library & Archive, 138-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2,John McGahern is often thought of as Ireland's quintessential chronicler of rural life, a writer who, through his Leitrim and Roscommon roots, helped to represent the delicate facets of the countryside more accurately than any writer since Patrick Kavanagh.From Howth of The Leavetaking, to Drumcondra and Contarf of The Pornographer or the city centre pubs of High Ground, he lovingly recreated the city he knew, first as a student teacher and in later years as a mature writer. The lecture will examine moments from the published fiction as well as considering an extensive unpublished correspondence that allows us access to McGahern's social networks and his motivations and preoccupations as he develops into one of the greatest writers of fiction in the post-war era.Reception to follow. No Booking Required. Come early to ensure a place. Further information: 01 674 4999 or [email protected] or [email protected]
"Doing their Bit": Irish Women and the First World War
This fab exhibition, on display in Charleville Mall Library from 1 July to 10 August, tells a multitude of Irish women’s stories during the First World War from Voluntary Aid Detachment nurses to munitions workers, home front volunteers, anti-enlistment activists and separation women. It draws on the archival records of the Royal Dublin Fusilers Association Archive and is curated by Dublin City Library and Archive and funded by Dublin City Council Decade of Commemoration.Speaking about the exhibition senior archivist Ellen Murphy said "The role of Irish women in World War 1 is a story that is yet to be fully told. Against the backdrop of the campaign for female suffrage and the struggle for Irish Independence, this exhibition explores how the First World War impacted the lives of Irish women and greatly accelerated the changes which had been slowly taking place in society before the outbreak of war.
"Doing their bit": Irish women and the First World War
"Doing their bit": Irish women and the First World War’ is a new exhibition in Dublin City Library and Archive in Pearse Street. The exhibition centres on the impact that the First World War had on the lives of Irish women and the new opportunities that opened up for them.Speaking about the exhibition senior archivist Ellen Murphy said "The role of Irish women in World War 1 is a story that is yet to be fully told. Against the backdrop of the campaign for female suffrage and the struggle for Irish Independence, this exhibition explores how the First World War impacted the lives of Irish women and greatly accelerated the changes which had been slowly taking place in society before the outbreak of war. By 1918 Constance Markievicz was the first woman elected to the British House of Commons and many Irish women had experienced new economic or social freedoms through the employment and volunteer opportunities offered by the war."Two notable women are highlighted in the exhibition; Kate Middleton Curtis a distinguished member of St John Ambulance in Dublin who referred to herself as ‘The oldest ambulance lady in Ireland’ and Monica Roberts, a young Stillorgan woman who in 1914 established ‘The Band of Helpers for the Soldiers’. This voluntary group sent ‘home comforts’ such as cigarettes, food, clothing and watches to Irish soldiers in the front line. Kate’s diary and other medical artefacts, as well as letters and postcards from the Monica Roberts collection, are on display.You may like to listen back to Women of the Brigade: St John Ambulance & the First World War, a talk by Pádraig Allen to accompany the exhibition.Many thanks to members of St John Ambulance Ireland and Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association for their contributions to our exhibition "Doing their bit": Irish women and the First World War. Here are a few photos from their visit on Friday 16 March:The exhibition draws on the rich vein of archival materials contained in the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive held at Dublin City Library and Archive to tell a multitude of women’s stories from Voluntary Aid Detachment nurses to munitions workers, home front volunteers, anti-enlistment activists and separation women. Other artefacts available for public viewing are a ‘death penny’ commemorating Sgt Michael Guilfoyle of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, killed at Salonica in 1916 and a book of poetry by the renowned republican poet Maeve Cavanagh.
On the eve of the 75th Anniversary of the North Strand Bombings, a set of files relating to compensation claims for property that was damaged or destroyed by the bombings have been catalogued by Dublin City Archives and can now be accessed by members of the public for the first time in our Reading Room.The North Strand Bombing occurred on the night of 30/31 May 1941, when four bombs were dropped over the North Strand area by German aircraft. The impact of the bombing was strongly felt in the city of Dublin as it resulted in the death of 28 people, injured over 90 and caused the destruction of 300 houses.The files relating to compensation claims were transferred to Dublin City Archives from the Law Department of Dublin City Council. They include documents and maps which layout the areas of the North Strand which were to be purchased by compulsory order by Dublin Corporation, as set out under the Neutrality (Damages to property) Act 1941. There is also a copy of a public inquiry held by the Ministry for Local Government and Public Health on 23 April 1942 to investigate what should be done with the acquired areas, along with the individual compensation claims files of both residents and business owners whose property was destroyed or damaged. Houses that were deemed habitable were repaired, whilst properties that were damaged beyond repair were purchased under compulsory order, and the displaced residents re-located to the new Dublin Corporation housing estates at Cabra and Crumlin.View Compensation Claims for the North Strand Area under the Neutrality (War Damage to Property) Act 1941 (pdf, 157kb) (Cannot access pdf?)The files are an important addition to the existing sources held by Dublin City Archives which tell the story of the North Stand Bombing and its impact on the people of Dublin. Other useful sources are the Dublin City Council Minutes and Reports which detail the formal response of Dublin Corporation , as well as a set of files from Dublin City Manager of the time P. J Hernon which provide detail of the clean up operation. The collection, which provides the greatest visual impact of the destruction, are a remarkable set of photographs by H. McCrae, photographer, who was commissioned by Dublin Corporation in 1941 to record the level of destruction caused by the bombing. Since 2009, we have also gathered stories and memories from ordinary Dubliners who were impacted by the bombing through our North Strand Bombing oral history project.Search and browse the North Strand Bombing Oral History Project online.Search and browse the North Strand Bombing Photographs online.Special EventTo commemorate the 75th Anniversary of this tragedy, a special event will be held at Charleville Mall Library on 31 May 2016 at 2.30 pm. Historian and archivist of St John Ambulance Brigade Pádraig Allen will outline how the Brigade, who were on duty, coped with the injured and dying in North Strand, drawing on previously unseen records from the St. John Ambulance Brigade archive. The North Strand Bombing Exhibition, devised by Dublin City Archives, will be on display and extracts from the Dublin City Archives Oral History Project with survivors of the bombing will also be played, with introduction by Ellen Murphy, Senior archivist. [Note: Event booked out, sorry]
The 50th anniversary of the destruction of Nelson's Pillar occurred on Tuesday, 8th March 2016, and to mark the occasion Dublin City Archives held a commemorative event entailing a talk by historian Donal Fallon, poetry read by Alastair Smeaton, and ballads by Luke Cheevers and Tony Fitzpatrick.View the photo slideshow of the event below. View the photos on flickr.The full programme was as follows:Extract from Evening Correspondent (Dated 16 February 1808). Read by Alastair SmeatonLord Nelson (Tommy Makem). Ballad sung by Tony FitzpatrickThe Pillar: the Life and Afterlife of the Nelson Pillar. Talk given by Donal FallonAdmiral Nelson (Luke Cheevers). Ballad sung by Luke CheeversDublin (Louis MacNeice). Poem read by Alastair SmeatonNelson’s Farewell (Joe Dolan from Galway). Ballad sung by Tony Fitzpatrick
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.Current and upcoming events and exhibitionsExhibition: Ringsend seamen in the Great War: 70 faces from 1918 - Cabra Library during the month of SeptemberMarch Away My Brothers: Irish Soldiers and their Music in the Great War - Rathmines Library on Monday 25th August at 6pm, and the Central Library on Thursday 28th August at 1pmStories from the Great War: the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive - Walkinstown Library on Monday 25th August 7pmHeritage Seminar focusing on the First World War at Sea - Dublin City Library & Archive on Friday 29th August 2-4pmDublin Festival of HistoryThe annual Dublin Festival of History which runs from 26th September to 8th October will feature talks and exhibitions on the First World War. Digitisation ProjectsOur first project is the online publication of the unique Monica Roberts Collection, which is held at Dublin City Library & Archive. Each item in the collection is now available to view online in the fully-searchable Monica Roberts Collection Database.The Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive and the Monica Roberts Collection form just part of our extensive material relating to the First World War. We are adding to this collection, and this year Dublin City Archives have received significant donations to the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive.A number of events and exhibitions drawn from these collections will be staged from 2014 on. Check Dublin City Public Libraries' Events Calendar for details of current events and exhibitions.Stories from the Great War: An exhibition at Dublin City Library & Archive, Pearse Street, featuring material from the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Archive, the Monica Roberts Collection, and other collections - October-December 2014.Dublin and the First World War: A programme of lectures in the Autumn City Hall Lunch-time Lecture series - October 2014.Letters from the Great War: A travelling exhibition of material from the Monica Roberts Collection - end 2014.Stories from Gallipoli: An exhibition at Dublin City Library & Archive, Pearse Street, drawn from the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Archive and other collections - March-May 2015.See AlsoRemembering Irish Men and Women who served in the First World War‘I met the boys in Gollypoly’ : World War I Collection
Dublin'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.]A member of the Home Rule Party, Dillon was imprisoned in Kilmainham Jail along with Charles Stewart Parnell in October 1881 under the Coercion Acts – from there they issued the ‘No Rent Manifesto’ calling on Irish tenants to withhold rents from their landlords. As a sign of solidarity with the imprisoned leaders, on 3 January 1882 Dublin City Council voted to award them the Honorary Freedom of Dublin – the highest honour in its gift. The conferring of the Honorary Freedom and the presentation of this oak casket did not take place until 16 August 1882, after both men had been released from Kilmainham Jail. The ceremony was held in the circular entrance room, or Rotunda, of Dublin’s City Hall.Left: The Freedom Casket (click to view larger image).The casket is on display to mark the centenary of the Home Rule Act 1914 and a seminar on the topic will take place in City Hall this autumn as part of the Dublin Festival of History.On loan to Dublin City Council from the Dillon Family, the casket measures in size 38 x 21 x 32 cm.
Dublin 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?Or perhaps you have photographs of friends or family doing jobs that no longer even exist? You might not think these photographs are important or of interest to anyone else - but Dublin has changed so much over the years that even photos taken ten or twenty years ago can show parts of Dublin that look very different to what we see today. We have found people love looking at photographs of Dublin as they remember it in their own youth - no matter if that was in the more recent 1990s or 1980s or as far back as the 1950s or 1940s or even earlier!We would love you to bring your photographs in to Grafton Street, in the centre of Dublin on Friday next, 8th March, Digital Dublin Day. Library staff will be on hand in our Library Learning Bus to scan your photographs and upload them to the internet to share with the wider world.We will be parked at the top of Grafton Street, at the corner of Stephen's Green, between 10am and 4pm. Look out for the Big Blue Bus!There is no charge for this event, which is part of a citywide series of events to mark Digital Dublin Day. Digital Dublin Day is a day of fun, designed to demonstrate to Dubliners the impact and potential of modern digital technologies and to encourage innovation and creativity in the ways we all harness technology in the city. So - join us in creating more digital memories, for ourselves and for the future!