The Royal Irish Academy/Acadamh Ríoga na hÉireann champions research. We identify and recognise Ireland’s world class researchers. We support scholarship and promote awareness of how science and the humanities enrich our lives and benefit society. We believe that good research needs to be promoted, sustained and communicated. The Academy is run by a Council of its members. Membership is by election and considered the highest academic honour in Ireland.

Read more about the RIA

New DRI Collection - Fingal and the Fight for Irish Freedom

17 October 2022

The Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) is delighted to announce that Fingal County Libraries has published its collection ‘Fingal and the Fight for Irish Freedom’. 

 ‘Fingal and the Fight for Irish Freedom’ 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 all across Ireland with a focus on Fingal. 

DRI Director Natalie Harrower said:

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.

County Librarian Betty Boardman added: 

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.

The collection is rich in material history but includes correspondence from the 1920s to people living in Fingal (including a letter from Michael Collins to his secretary Evelyn Lawless on her retirement). It adds to a growing body of twentieth-century correspondence already held in the Repository and that looks at the political and social life on the island. The collection includes a number of items which relate to the Frongoch Internment camp such as a spoon and ring which were made by Peter Kelly while interned in Wales. The Repository holds a collection of items from DRI’s ‘Frongoch and 1916: Recreating a lost landscape’ project. The addition of this collection to DRI ensures the Repository is an important resource for researchers and members of the public who are interested in exploring topics like Frongoch as well as the broader period in which our state was founded. You can browse the full collection in the Repository through the collection DOI

We provide regular updates on collection publications on our Twitter page, and you can also follow us on Instagram to uncover more treasures in the Repository. You can sign up for our newsletter on our website for more updates and news of our events. 

Image credit: Doyle, Peadar S. (2022) Certificate of service of Seán Doyle, Irish Republican Army, Digital Repository of Ireland [Distributor], Fingal Local Studies & Archives [Depositing Institution],

Fan ar an eolas le nuachtlitir Acadamh Ríoga na hÉireann

Sign up now