10 October 2014: Something for the weekend: new online resources for the ‘Decade of Centenaries’

Published in Archives, Blogging Irish History, Uncategorized

‘Hours of fun’

With the nights getter longer, we’ve decided to do a little online round-up, as there is all kinds of material now on the internet thanks to the decade of centenaries/commemoration. Anyone who signed up to this remarkable TCD online course on the Irish revolution will be well aware that resources are being freed up to make contemporary source material available online on an unprecedented scale. The trend has continued in recent weeks. First up is the latest edition of Century Ireland, complete with this curious tale of a German, an Irishman, and a potato on a London street. Last week saw the second release of files from the Military Service (1916-23) Pension Collection, amongst which was the intriguing case of Denis ‘Sonny’ O’Neill, who may or may not have been the man who shot Michael Collins.

From north of the border comes the impressive Creative Centenaries: a new (as in, only spotted last week) website supported by the NI Department of Arts, Culture and Leisure that acts as a portal to access information and resources about the revolutionary decade. And, true to its name, it does so with a striking degree of creativity and imagination: check out, amongst many other things, two new graphic novels (free to download) about the Easter Rising and the battle of the Somme.

Naturally, the First World War has prompted some interesting (and impressive) online ventures for the centenary year. The Representative Church Body Library have digitized and made available the Church of Ireland Gazette for 1914, while the University of Limerick has come up with It’s a long way to Tipperary, exploring World War One in real time through the experiences of a single family from Co. Tipperary.

And from the local dimension of the war, let’s move to the global, in the shape of the International Encyclopedia of the First World War, which went live on 8 October. This massive international collaboration is ultimately intended to be the most comprehensive encyclopedia of the First World War. It’s open access, free to all, and inevitably contains much of Irish interest: Richard Grayson’s measured overview of Ireland and the war is a case in point, but there is much, much more besides

Last but not least, Roy Foster has a new book out on the revolutionary generation, 1890-1923. It’s getting good reviews and no doubt will be reviewed in a future issue, but if you like the sound of it, you can listen to the man himself talk on the subject thanks to this podcast from UCD HistoryHub.


John Gibney


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