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Carmel O'Reilly remembers when she and her husband first started courting.

In the extract Carmel O'Reilly remembers when she and her husband first started courting. She describes this time as very innocent. She remembers marrying at 20 and she says that they were not 'well up', they were innocent. She remembers also the…

Volta Cinema, Mary St. c. 1950

This cinema is mentioned by a number of our interviewees.

Volta Cinema, Mary St. c. 1950. Liam O'Leary - Irish Film…

Tivoli Theatre, Burgh Quay

The Tivoli Theatre is mentioned by a number of our interviewees.

Source: Tivoli Theatre, Burgh Quay. National Library -…

Theatre Royal, Hawkin's Street

Theatre Royal, Hawkin's Street. The first Theatre Royal opened in 1821 but was destroyed by fire in 1880. A new Theatre Royal was built on the site and opened in 1897. This was demolished in 1930 and replaced by the third Theatre Royal in 1935. This…

The Savoy Cinema, 1954

The Savoy Cinema, 1954 The Savoy is the oldest remaining cinema in the city centre. It was formally opened by President Cosgrave in November 1929 and could seat nearly 3,000 at that time. One of the biggest attractions ever screened there was Gone…

Capitol Cinema, Princes Street 1954

Capitol Cinema, Princes Street began life in the early 1920s as LaScala Theatre and Ballroom. In 1927 Ireland's first talking picture, The Singing Fool starring Al Jolson was presented in the Capitol. The cinema closed in 1972.

The Capitol cinema…

The Metropole Cinema, O'Connell Street. c.1923

This building contained a Cinema, Ballroom, two Bars and a Restaurant. The cinema, which seated 1,000, opened in 1922 with Peck's Bad Boy starring Jackie Coogan. The Metropole closed in 1972. It was demolished and the site is now occupied by Penny's…

Cinema Queue in Dublin c.1944

Before the advent of television, "going to the pictures" was a favourite form of entertainment for Dubliners. A popular film would draw large crowds of cinema-goers who would queue, often for long periods of time, to gain admittance. As interviewee…

Hugh Smullen talks about when he first met his wife.

In this extract Hugh Smullen talks about how he first met his wife. He remembers he and his friends used to congregate at the swimming baths in Cabra. He notes that at the time the boys would get into the baths but the girls wouldn't, they would…

Carmel O'Reilly remembers going to the cinema with her husband.

In this extract Carmel O'Reilly remembers that herself and her husband went very often to the various cinemas around Dublin. She recalls the early years of her married…

Seamus Marken talks about the importance of newspapers in his family.

In this extract Seamus Marken talks about the importance of newspapers in his family. He remembers that his family didn't have a radio or a gramophone nor a telephone and so newspapers were the main source for hearing about the…

Jim Quinn remembers the different books he read as a child.

Here Jim Quinn remembers the different books that he read as a child, in particular Treasure Island and Alice in Wonderland. He remembers going to Green's book shop and buying books on history and geography which were his favourite subjects to read…

Jim Quinn talks about the different newspapers that he bought.

In this extract Jim Quinn remembers the different newspapers that he bought. He remembers that his family relied on newspapers as the main source of news and information. He says that not everybody had a radio at that time, it wasn't until he was…

Hugh Smullen remembers that he was an avid reader as a child.

In this extract Hugh Smullen remembers that he was an avid reader when he was a child. In particular he remembers that he was very keen on history and particularly European history. He talks about Capel Street library as being his source for…

Hugh Smullen talks about rationing when he was a child.

In this extract Hugh Smullen says that aside from his recollections of food stamps and rationing of clothing he doesn't have much memory of rationing during the second world war. He attributes this to the fact that they never really had much in the…

Hugh Smullen talks about when his father died and how difficult things were for his mother.

In this extract Hugh Smullen remembers when his father died and things became very difficult for his mother. He talks about her strategies for surviving the poverty of the time when there was no welfare or little by way of state support. He remembers…

Angela McFarland remembers the tenement house she lived in when she first got married.

In this extract Angela McFarland remembers the tenement house she lived in when she first got married. She occupied two rooms in the house. She remembers that things were often difficult but there were good times there too. She tells us that you…

Stephanie Cannon recalls that life was much harder when she was growing up compared with today.

In this extract Stephanie Cannon remembers that things were hard when she was growing up, much harder than today's life. She describes the housing conditions of her home when she was young and remarks that people have everything now by comparison and…

Jim Quinn describes the way in which is mother would do the grocery shopping when he was child.

In this extract Jim Quinn talks about grocery shopping in particular he remembers his mother would go to Hafner's Butchers in Henry Street to get sausages and puddings. He says everything you needed was in walking distance of your house, there were…

Jim Quinn reflects on the changes in the types of food eaten during his lifetime.

In this extract Jim Quinn reflects on the changes in the types of food eaten during his lifetime. He remembers that people would buy things like sugar, tea and coffee loose in brown paper bags. He remembers that butter used to come in giant slabs and…

Jim Quinn talks about his favourite food as a child.

In this extract Jim Quinn talks about his favourite food as a child. He remembers eggs, bacon and puddings for Sunday morning breakfasts as well as colcannon at particular times of the year. He also remembers that Ringsend which is close to where he…

Marie Murphy recollects the food that she used to eat as a child, and still does.

In this extract Marie Murphy recollects the food that she used to eat as a child and still does. She notes that a lot of the food that was quite common when she was young is now very difficult to get or is very expensive. In particular she remembers…

Seamus Marken remembers the food that he loved to eat when he was younger.

In this extract Seamus Marken recalls the food that he loved to eat when he was younger. He remembers that his mother was an excellent cook and he loved anything that she made. However he specifically remembers loving lamb's tripe with liver and…

Hugh Smullen describes his grandmother's cooking.

In this extract Hugh Smullen talks about his grandmother's cooking. He remembers that she was a good cook and that she used to cook on a range that was heated by the fire. They had no gas and no cooker just the fire and a…

Seamus Marken recalls that he and his family relied on the grapevine in order to get news.

In this extract Seamus Marken says that he and his family relied on the grapevine in order to get news or information - he says that he would always get wind of the word when there was news to be…

Jim Quinn describes how word of mouth was an important source of information when he was a child.

In this extract Jim Quinn points out that there were no telephones about when he was a child, there were phone boxes on the street but in general people relied on word of mouth to get information. He remembers that his mother would talk to the local…

Angela McFarland remembers that news and information was passed around from mouth to mouth when she was a child.

In this extract Angela McFarland talks about the method by which news was communicated when she was younger. She says that news went from mouth to mouth and this was how information got…

The Flats - Leo Byrne takes a stroll down Pearse Street.

The author takes 'A Stroll Down Pearse Street' pointing out items of interest.

Extract from: Byrne, L. (2004) 'The Flats', Baltimore, U.S., LLLP,…

Aungier Street c.1940's

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Source: Aungier Street c. 1940s - Cabra History - http://www.cabrahistory.com/?page_id=10&album=1&gallery=7&nggpage=2…

Westland Row/Lincoln Place

'Westland Row'. plate 159 - (Chandler Collection?) Taken from McCullough, Niall (1989) 'Dublin: An Urban History'. Anne Street Press, Dublin…

Moore Street c. 1961

Interviewee Seamus Marken grew up in Moore Street, worked as butcher and had strong family associations with the street - Family 'had big fish and poultry shop there.

As an older boy Seamus Marken earned some money running errands for the street…

Moore Street c. 1959

Moore Street c. 1959. National Library Library - Reference Number: INDR2145

Moore Street c. 1959. Interviewee Seamus Marken who grew up on this street has a fund of wonderful anecdotes about his childhood playing in the: "...warren of little…

Hugh Smullen recollects the sounds that were common place when he was young.

In this extract Hugh Smullen recollects the sounds that were common place when he was young. He remembers the noise of the city trams on the street where he grew up and the sound of the horses hooves clipping along the street. He talks about the taxi…

Speaking volumes: a Dublin childhood [extract pp28-33]

Brief history of Swift's (St. Patrick's) Hospital (pp.28-9) - descriptions of Thomas St. street traders (p.29) (link to Moore St. traders?) descriptions of small 'huckser' type shops (pp.29-31)

Extract from: Devlin, Edith Newman (2000) Speaking…

Pictures in the Hallway

The importance of a good fire - link with Hugh Smullen's description of bringing coal to elderly neighbour.

Geographical area: O'Connell St. area - Mountjoy - Parnell sector

Extract from: O'Casey, S. (1942) Pictures in the Hallway. Rpt. (1980)…

Seamus Marken remembers being chastised by his father when he was a child, this was an important lesson on the importance of social support.

In this extract Seamus Marken remembers an incident when he was a child where he was chastised by his father because he refused to run an errand for an old woman who lived on Moore Street as he wanted to continue playing a game of chasing with his…

Hugh Smullen remembers working on the coal docks transporting coal from the docks to the yard.

In this extract Hugh Smullen remembers working on the coal docks transporting coal from the docks to the yard. He remembers that the left over coal that fell out of the buckets would be on the floor of his lorry and so he used to be able to supply…

Hugh Smullen talks about the importance of family support.

In this extract Hugh Smullen talks about the importance of family support. He remembers that his father was ill with TB and that there was a fear that his sister was becoming ill, as a result his Aunt took his sister in. This was to help out his…

Betty Watson talks about growing older in her community.

In this extract Betty Watson talks about growing older in her community. She notes that her community is very close knit and it's a safe community where everybody looks out for one…

Seamus Marken talks about the social roles performed by women when he was a child.

In this extract Seamus Marken talks about the women that would come for deaths. Their role was to wash the bodies and to to lay them out, then they would keen at the…

Bang Bang (Thomas Dudley)

Bang Bang (real name is believed to be Thomas Dudley) was an eccentric elderly gentleman in Dublin in the 1950s and 1960s who achieved fame as a character in the city. A fan of cowboy films, Bang Bang used to travel the buses and trams of the city…

Hugh Smullen remembers Alfie Byrne, the much loved Lord Mayor of Dublin.

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In this extract Hugh Smullen remembers Alfie Byrne, the much loved Lord Mayor of Dublin.…

Benburb Street

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Leslie Greer talks about her career teaching English as a foreign language all around the world.

Leslie Greer led a very different life from the other participants in this project. In this extract she talks about her working life teaching English as a foreign language all around the world. She talks about living and working in Germany, Brazil,…

Leslie Greer talks about her experiences working for Bletchley, a British intelligence agency established during WW2.

In this extract Leslie Greer talks about her experiences working for Bletchley, a British organisation set up to intercept German signals during the war, code breakers worked on the signals to try and interpret communications within the German…

Seamus Marken remembers food rationing during WW2.

In this extract Seamus Marken talks about food rationing during world war two, in particular he remembers the black market for tea which was heavily rationed in…

Seamus Marken talks about the emergency in Ireland and in particular the ways people got around the rationing of tea.

In this extract Seamus Marken remembers how his mother made irel coffee during the war when tea was rationed. This was used as a substitute to tea when it was hard to come…

Jim Quinn remembers the shortage of fuel and particularly coal during the war times in Ireland.

In this extract Jim Quinn remembers the shortage of fuel and particularly coal during the war times. He remembers people often had to rely on damp turf for fuel which was not appropriate for the types of fireplaces which were typical of city housing…

Leslie Greer talks about giving advice to a woman from Angola who lives near her.

In this extract Leslie Greer talks about a woman from Angola who lives near her who comes to her for advice or help for example if she has to write a letter…

Seamus Marken talks about the importance of his faith to him.

In this extract Seamus Marken talks about the importance of his faith to him. He says that his Christianity is very important and that he tries to always see the person of God in everybody he meets. He also feels that with the benefit of age and…

Seamus Marken recalls the high levels of alcholism among men when he was a child.

In this extract Seamus Marken recalls the high levels of alcoholism among men when he was a child. He remembers a particular pub called Red Biddy's Shop which gave away a cheap glass of wine when you bought a stout or a pint. He remembers the drunken…

Jim Quinn reflects on the changes in Irish society particularly in relation to the influence of the Catholic church.

Here Jim Quinn reflects on the changes in Irish society. He notes that marriage is not as prevalent now as it was and he remembers how powerful the church were. He describes the church and particularly John Charles McQuaid as a dictator during his…

Hugh Smullen talks about learning the value of patience in his later life.

In this extract Hugh Smullen talks about learning how to be patient in his later life. He feels that he has developed better listening skills. He says that he finds this a very good time in his life and the he is very happy. He thinks about his…

Betty Watson talks about the wisdom that she has gained through her life experiences.

In this extract Betty Watson talks about the wisdom that she has learned through her life experiences and through her return to education as an adult. She says that the best thing about being older is that you can be more direct about…

Betty Watson talks about the lack of educational opportunities available to her during her early life.

In this extract Betty Watson speaks about the lack of educational opportunities available to her during her life. However she says that she recognised this deficit and she returned to education in her adult…

Leslie Greer notes that she thinks men tend to improve with age.

In this extract Leslie Greer says that she thinks men improve with age something which she doesn't notice as much with women.…

Seamus Marken explains his strategy for dealing with the advancing arthritis which he suffers with in his legs.

In this extract Seamus Marken talks about the advancing arthritis which he suffers with in his two legs. Seamus says that although he has pains and aches he believes that the best strategy is to not dwell on these things. He says that he is not…

Betty Dempsey describes how she deals with ageing and the feeling that her body is slowing up.

In this extract Betty Dempsey associates ageing with slowing up she describes it as being worn out. However she says that she tries to keep going, she has to take rests every few minutes when she's doing the housework or…

Carmel O'Reilly talks about growing older among her friends.

In this extract Carmel O'Reilly talks about noticing that some of her friends and acquaintances are getting old. She laughs as she remembers her that her friend once reminded her that she was no Peter Pan…

Betty Dempsey describes how she deals with ageing and the feeling that her body is slowing up.

In this extract Betty Dempsey talks about ageing and she says that she feels worn out. She talks about having to take regular breaks if she wants to walk anywhere and that she has to take her…

Eileen McCann compares the experiences of growing older as a woman with that of men.

In this extract Eileen McCann compares the experiences of older men with older women. She feels that older women tend to be better at communication, she attributes this to experience of life. She thinks that men tend to gather in the pub when they…

Marie Murphy reflects on how men and women may experience ageing differently.

In this extract Marie Murphy reflects on how men and women may experience ageing differently. In particular she observes that men seem to be more isolated than women and may perhaps be more lonely when they are…

Seamus Marken describes the best thing about being older, in particular he notes that he feels more free.

In this extract Seamus Marken talks about the best thing about being older. He remembers the morning after he retired waking up and thinking that he didn't have to do anything. He enjoys the freedom associated with later life, of not being subject to…

Jim Quinn talks about the increased quality of life expectancy for older people now compared to when he was a child.

In this extract Jim Quinn says that he is the longest living of the males in his family. He remembers that when he was a child he used to think a man of 60 was old. He attributes this to the fact that people are living much longer nowadays and living…

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Hugh Smullen talks about his perceptions of older people when he was a child.

In this extract Hugh Smullen talks about his perceptions of older people when he was a child. He notes that everybody looked older than they were at that time, he attributes this to the fact that there was a lot of drink and very little money. He…

Stephanie Cannon talks about feeling lucky that she has reached her age now and is still in good health.

In this extract Stephanie Cannon says that she feels very lucky to have reached her age now and in good health. She remembers looking after her mother who was sick for three years before she died and so she feels lucky to be in good health…

Stephanie Cannon compares her life now to her mother's life.

In this extract Stephanie Cannon compares her life now with her mothers. She points out that things are much easier now compared to her mother's life. She feels that there is more support now for…

Seamus Marken laments the fact that some older people can be socially isolated.

In this extract Seamus Marken laments the fact that a lot of older people become very isolated and won't come out of their houses. He thinks this is because they are afraid to leave their houses. He feels that this lack of social engagement can lead…

Carmel O'Reilly points out the importance of good friendship in life.

In this extract Carmel O'Reilly points out the importance of good friendship. She speaks about a particular neighbour who she has known for over 20 years. Together they keep themselves active and socially engaged which Carmel O'Reilly realises is…

Betty Watson talks about the importance of social interaction particularly in later life.

In this extract Betty Watson talks about the importance of interaction in later life, she says it provides "something out there that's keeping you…

Betty Dempsey describes the activities that she does with the local community centre.

In this extract Betty Dempsey talks about the activities that she does with the local community center. She talks about learning to send emails and doing yoga and flower arranging. She says that there are plenty of opportunities open to people her…

Hugh Smullen vividly recalls his working life which started at age 14.

In this extract Hugh Smullen vividly remembers his working life which started at aged 14. He remembers leaving school at 14 and starting work as a messenger boy for a Tailor Shop in the city centre. He remembers vividly working as a delivery boy and…

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Eileen McCann talks about leaving school at 14 and starting work in Jacob's factory.

In this extract Eileen McCann speaks about leaving school at 14 and beginning work in Jacobs factory. She remembers that she left work there when she got married after which she worked as a cleaner in different people's houses. Later in her life she…

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Betty Watson expresses regret at having to leave school at 14. She reflects on the deprivation of education in her early life.

In this extract Betty Watson expresses regret at having been forced to leave school at 14. She reflects on her life as a wife, a mother and a housekeeper and acknowledges the lack of educational opportunities open to her as a younger woman which…

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Angela McFarland remembers starting full-time work at age 14.

In this extract Angela McFarland remembers when she first started working full time at age 14. She remembers working in Jacob's factory for a time. In this extract she recalls going to the interview for the…

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Power's Court, View from Delahunty's Buildings

Power's Court, View from Delahunty's Buildings. A delivery boy with his cart advertising Lipton's Tea stands outside a terrace of houses. The cobbled street must have made pushing a heavily-laden cart an arduous business.

Power's Court, View from…

Delivery boy

In the days before supermarkets, many shops employed messenger boys to run errands and to deliver customers' shopping. The grander stores generally supplied a smart uniform like the one worn by the young man in this photograph.

Interviewee Hugh…

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It's a Long Way From Penny Apples (Extract pp.28-33)

Author's story of life in Summerhill slum as one of 14 children - Rise to wealth through hard work and determination - Stephen's Green dream idyll (p.28), Rationing (p.31).

Note: like many of the interviewees, Cullen left school at 13. His early…

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Hugh Smullen observes that in many ways he feels that children today are deprived of poverty.

In this extract Hugh Smullen says that in many ways he believes the children of today are deprived of poverty. He can't remember boredom when he was a child, he says that although they had nothing they were happy as they didn't expect much or need…

Hugh Smullen talks about the poverty that was prevalent in Dublin during his childhood.

In this extract Hugh Smullen talks about his early childhood. He remembers living with his grandparents and being very privileged compared to his siblings as they were better off than his parents. However after his father died he returned to live…

Angela McFarland remembers her first pay check when she started working in Jacob's factory.

In this extract Angela McFarland talks about her first paycheck when she started work at Jacobs Factory. She Spoke about giving up her wages to her mother who then gave her pocket money. She remembers she used to always make sure she kept her dance…

Angela McFarland compares her recollections of her own childhood with that of her grandchildren.

In this extract Angela McFarland compares her recollections of her own childhood with that of her grandchildren. She remarks that her grandchildren have a very different childhood from herself. By comparison they have everything they want where she…

Angela McFarland notes that she didn't have much when she was a child but she points out that everybody was in the same boat.

In this extract Angela McFarland tells us about getting pocket money as a child, she says it wasn't an awful lot but she points out that everybody was the same in those days. She says because everybody was in the same boat she didn't need an awful…

'Former Prize Baby Blighted'

From the Irish Press 'Slum Evil' Series, October 19th 1936 p.9 - 'Former prize baby blighted'

Sub-headings- 'Desperate Mother Tells Tragic Story: Doctors Call Help' Two photos accompanying article - under heading 'Once Radiant Child, Now a…

'Baby Hospital Joins Slum War'

From the Irish Press 'Slum Evil' Series, October 12th, 1936 p.9 - 'Baby hospital joins slum war' Sub-headings: 'Staff of Teach Ultan says Published Stories of Vermin not Exaggerated' 'Voice of the People From and on Slums' - 'Slum conditions are…

'Dublin's Infantile Death Rate Demands Slum Abolition'

Article from Irish Press's 'Slum Evil' Series, October 6th 1936 p.9 'Dublin's infantile death rate demands slum abolition'

Sub-headings - 'Massacre of the Innocents' - reasons why figures cannot be reduced substantially' - 'Tenement Children's…

Seamus Marken talks about the importance of books and reading during his life.

In this extract Seamus Marken says that he was born with a book in his arms! He remembers that he was an avid reader from a very early age and that he remembers being desperate sometimes for something to read. He talks about the different books he…

Seamus Marken talks about the activities he and his friends would do when he was young. In particular he remembers going to the cinema.

In this extract Seamus Marken remembers that he used to meet his friends on the corner at night after his tea. He says that if they had any money they would go to the pictures. He describes the different cinemas he would go to and remembers that some…

Hugh Smullen remembers going to the pictures when he was a child.

In this extract Hugh Smullen talks about going to the pictures as a child. He remembers how he loved the cinema. He talks about the 'following-uppers' or the serial films where you had to come back to find out the conclusion in the story. In…

Pearse Square

Formerly known as Queen Square, Pearse Square dates from the late 1830s. It is a rectangular open space of approximately 1 acre, with houses on three sides and the forth side opening on to Pearse Street. Interviewee Carmel O'Reilly grew up…

Ringsend children

Ringsend 1950s Two small boys are standing in front of a shop, a younger child stands off to one side clutching a sweeping brush. Notices painted in the shop window advertise bargains to the canny housewife.

Ringsend 1950s - children playing in…

Findlater's Church

Findlater's Church. The Presbyterian church Parnell Square was endowed by Alexander Findlater, a Dublin merchant. It was built in the 1860s at a cost of £14,000. Interviewee Hugh Smullen recalls many happy childhood days playing near the church:…

Magenniss's Court, off Townsend Street c. 1913 (W.J.Joyce)

Magenniss's Court, off Townsend Street c. 1913 (W.J.Joyce) Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, Lantern 7:28 Taken from Corlett, Christiaan. (2008). Darkest Dublin: The story of the Church Street disaster and a pictorial account of the slums of…

Andy Mohan talks about being chastised at school when he was a child.

In this extract Andy Mohan talks about his experiences at school, in particular he remembers how a teacher would hit him with a stick as punishment when he did something wrong in…

A Libertarian in the Thirties [Extract p48-57]

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Descriptions of some childhood games played in the Liberties from the autobiography of Bill Brady (unpublished)…

Down Cobbled Streets [Extract p22-31]

Brief history of the Liberties in Dublin from the perspective of the lives of her family members. She begins by introducting her grandparents who moved to the Liberties in the late 1800's from the country. She describes the community of the Liberties…

I Knock at the Door [Extract p.74-81]

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O'Casey, S. (1939). I Knock at the Door Rpt. (1980) Autobiographies 1 (Combined edition). Pan Books Ltd., London. p.74-81.…

Carmel O'Reilly remembers how the teachers would chastise children when she was at school.

In this extract Carmel O'Reilly recalls an incident from her school days. She remembers a particular teacher who could be quite cruel to the children. She describes a very different educational experience to what would be typical of…

Betty Watson observes that she and many people of her generation were not academically prepared for life.

In this extract Betty Watson makes the point that she and many people of her generation were not academically prepared for life. She remembers that she was taken out of school at 14 years of age and put into a sewing factory. She says that there was…

St Andrew's National School

The former St Andrew's National School, now used as a community resource centre, enjoys a close working relationship with Trinity College Dublin. Much of the Trinity College Dublin's involvement with the centre revolves around education, e.g. the…