Fingal and the Fight for Irish Freedom’ is now available on the Digital Repository of Ireland

by Rose Barrett
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Fingal County Libraries is delighted to announce that the Digital Repository of Ireland  has published a photographic collection titled ‘Fingal and the Fight for Irish Freedom’

 This rich collection is made up of material that was gathered at public collection days across Fingal in 2015 and 2016 making it a truly unique snapshot of the independence and civil war artefacts and history. The collection includes items from across Ireland with a focus on Fingal.

James Lawless Medal

The project is part of Fingal County Council’s Decade of Centenary Programme with support from the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media.

The Fingal Memorabilia Days sought to identify, photograph, and publish memorabilia connected to Fingallians involved in the revolutionary period (1912-1923). Members of the public were invited to bring memorabilia to three venues: Grand Hotel in Malahide, the Atrium in Blanchardstown and the Bracken Court Hotel in Balbriggan.

County Librarian, Betty Boardman remarked,

“The Fingal County Council Memorabilia Days in 2015 and 2016 were hugely successful, allowing members of the public to bring their precious items and memories to be photographed with the intention of publishing them as part of this collection. We accumulated quite a range of material from across the country: altogether the collection contains 190 images. We would like to extend our gratitude to DRI for making this rich collection of materials so readily accessible to researchers, historians, and members of the public.”

Chief Executive of Fingal County Council, AnnMarie Farrelly said,
“Fingal County Council is delighted to have the ‘Fingal and the Fight for Irish Freedom’ available on the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI), a national digital repository for Ireland’s cultural heritage data.  I would like to acknowledge the work, commitment and dedication that has gone into its production by all involved: members of the public who shared their treasured memories, Fingal Local Studies and Archives and the team at DRI.”

As there was no limitation on what memorabilia could be photographed, the photographs include memorabilia from beyond the county of Fingal.   The subjects of the photographs include both well-known national figures, and lesser-known regional revolutionaries. The ‘Fingal and the Fight for Irish Freedom’ collection includes: military service certificates; medals awarded for military activity; autograph books compiled during imprisonment; and ephemera documenting the death of revolutionary figures.

DRI Director Natalie Harrower added,

‘This is the first collection published by Fingal County Libraries in DRI, and it’s always worth marking such a moment, because of the contribution it makes to wider public access and discovery. The collection days that were held by Fingal Library to assemble this collection are an excellent example of how our public libraries and local authorities can work with their communities to build historical collections of real importance. This collection gives us insight into major historical figures and events but perhaps more importantly it recaptures the involvement of lesser-known Fingallians in these events.’ 

You can access the collection at https://repository.dri.ie/organisations. From the repository homepage you can navigate to see the collection by clicking on the ‘Discover’ link in the navigation bar. Select ‘Browse by Organisation’, scroll down to ‘Fingal Local Studies & Archives’ and click on the collection in the right-hand column. It is important you filter the photographs by ‘order/sequence’ to ensure they are grouped correctly.

Fingal Local Studies and Archives would like to acknowledge and thank members of the public for participating in this project and authorising the publication of these images.

Fingal Libraries Local Studies and Archives is a repository of photographs and documents, private and donated collections, encapsulating visual and literary snapshots of Fingal and the Dublin area through history.

It is a treasure trove for anyone looking to unearth the rich culture and heritage that is the region of Fingal. For full details of opening hours for all our branches, please visit https://www.fingal.ie/fingallibraries.

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