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Wednesday 18 October 2017

1916 letters part of Wexford's living history

By David Tucker

Bernard Browne and Mgr Lory Kehoe.
Bernard Browne and Mgr Lory Kehoe.
County archivist Grainne Doran with an old permit.
Don Askins.
Joseph Doyle and Karolina Badznierowska.
Historian Henry Goff.
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Emma Clarke and researcher Linda Spinazze.

EXPERTS were on hand to help local people record their Easter Rising memorabilia for posterity as part of the county's living history at a 'Letters of 1916' launch at Enniscorthy Library last week.

County Executive Librarian Jarlath Glynn said 45 people from around the county attended the event, bringing a wealth of material from their personal collections.

Susan Schreibman, the Professor Digital Humanities and Director of An Foras Feasa, the Humanities Research Institute at Maynooth University, spoke about digitising the historic documents and showed people how to upload them to the website.

County Archivist Graine Doran spoke about some of the documents in the county archive collection relating to the period, while Bernard Browne, a personnel officer at the EPA who previously managed the 1798 Centre, spoke about an ancestor Senator Kathleen Browne who was imprisoned in Mounjoy during the rising and sent letters home to Wexford. She became the founder of the diocesan history society.

Photographer Ibar Carty, who is custodian of the P.A. Crane photographic collection, showed some of the images from it and broadcaster Alan Maguire was on hand to record some of the material for the local living history project.

Letters of 1916 was originally set up to create a crowd-sourced archive of personal letters and testimonies relating to the period.

So far, it has collected over 1,800 letters in order to create an online open-access archive of the year around the Easter Rising. The Enniscorthy launch was the first in a series of events around the country that are aimed at highlighting the project.

Find out more about the project on www.letters1916.ie

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