Thursday, March 28, 2013

Looking for Artifacts of the Irish Diaspora in America

If you are a descendant of Irish immigrants to America, the Little Museum of Dublin would like to borrow some of your family items.  The Little Museum (I wonder if it really is little?), a nonprofit, formally opened in October 2011 in Dublin, Ireland.  Its mission is to remember the social, cultural, and political history of the city.

From May to August of this year the museum is planning the Huddled Masses Exhibition, which aims to tell the story of Irish America and the search for the American dream.  The exhibition also intends to explore the relationship between Ireland and the United States.

The museum is currently looking for documents of all sorts -- letters, photographs, newspaper clippings -- books, clothes, and other artifacts that relate to the theme of Irish immigration to the U.S. and that will add to and enrich the exhibition.  Some of the suggested items are documents relating to emigration and immigration (tickets, letters, posters, visas, passports), American wakes, the Irish Catholic church in America, Irish American women, Irish regiments in the Civil War, and Irish domestic servants around the turn of the 20th century.

More information about the planned exhibit and the request for contributions is in this article.

I visited Dublin in 1996, so of course I didn't get to visit this museum because it didn't exist yet.  It sounds like a lovely little place.  I especially like the idea of the "I Love Dublin" classes they have for school children, to teach them about the heritage of their city.

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