The Revolution will not be Penalised

If you have made it in to our library since the re-opening in 2018, you will no doubt have encountered my bearded friend and colleague, Ciarán. He, far more knowledgeable about history than myself, was looking through old photographs and archives doing some research and came across this letter. John Whelan was the first librarian…

The Stairs to Hell

You never know what you might find in the middle aisle in LIDL. Nowhere is this more true than the one on Aungier Street in Dublin. If you have visited the new LIDL on Aungier Street, near St. Enda’s School, you will have no doubt noticed the two large glass windows in the floor, giving…

A Palace on Kevin Street

An 800 year old palace is hiding in plain view on our doorstep. Kevin Street, has had the same name for 400 years and is one of Dublin’s oldest streets.  It was named for the nearby St Kevin’s Church, in the park off Camden Row. The old Garda Station on Kevin Street, had been a…

Griffith Barracks

In 1813 the building that now houses Griffith College was originally built as a prison.  Above the entrance it said “Cease to do evil; learn to do well. It was designed by Francis Johnson.  In 1844, after a trial that lasted 25 days, Daniel O’Connell was imprisoned there. Next in the late 1800’s it became…

Jacob’s Biscuit Factory

Just across the road from our library on Bishop Street once stood the Jacob’s Biscuit factory where thousands of delicious treats were made every day! Image: National Library of Ireland The Jacob’s were a family from Waterford.  They were Quakers and they were also bakers.  In 1885 they invented the Cream Cracker, their best-seller.  In…

Harcourt Street Station

Harcourt Street Station, the long building beside the Harcourt Luas stop, opened in 1859 as a train station.  A train line ran between from there to Bray and then later Wexford. The Vaults underneath the station were used to store whiskey. In 1900, on Valentine’s Day, a train carrying cattle “failed to stop” and came…

Dunlop Building

The first bike tyres were made of iron bands on wooden wheels. After that they were made from solid rubber.  Imagine how bumpy that would be! Thankfully John Boyd Dunlop, a Scottish Inventor living in Ireland, came up with the idea of the inflatable or pneumatic tyre and we’ve been cycling around on a cushion…

The Cork Street Fever Hospital

Brú Chaoimhín was a originally a hospital set up to treat people with infectious diseases. It was designed as two buildings originally. One for the people who were still sick and one for people who were not infectious any more but were still getting better. In 1818, 3,000 people with Typhus were admitted In 1826…

10 Mill Street

10 Mill Street was built in the 1720’s, making it one of the oldest surviving buildings in the area. The Brabazon family owned a lot of land around the Liberties.  Eventually they were given the title of the Earls of Meath. Lots of local place names still have that name today, like Meath Street or…

The Dublin Whiskey Fire

In 1875, a fire started in a warehouse on the edge of Newmarket Square holding 5,000 barrels of Whiskey. Whiskey has a lot of alcohol in it and it burns like petrol.  Eventually the 5,000 barrels exploded and a river of burning whiskey poured like lava down Chamber Street, to Mill Street beside Warrenmount Presentation…

I’m All Ears!

Dublin is full of stories and I can’t think of anywhere in the world that has better stories to tell than this small corner of the city. The craic to be had on Jacob’s Factory floor, going with your nan to the old Iveagh Market to get the messages, long afternoons in the Bayno Play…

The Builders are Back!

The time has come for us to say goodbye to our neighbours in DIT as they move on to their exciting next chapter in Grangegorman. When the college was built in 1966 a crane collapsed on the site and came through the ceiling and balcony of our middle, reading room. Before that college was there,…

Visit the Liberties Online

While technically our library is just outside the Liberties lots of our library patrons live there. To stay up to date on developments in the area, learn about its history and much more, be sure to visit, The Liberties Dublin website. It really is an excellent site and updated regularly.

Listen to a Podcast

I love Podcasts. It’s like having a chat with a really smart friend. It’s great to stick one on when you are folding the clothes, cooking dinner or walking somewhere. The time flies by. I have found them especially invaluable over the last year. You can find podcasts about almost anything you can think of….

Find Out About A Building

You can find out about 65,000 different buildings and gardens in Ireland by searching the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage. Try clicking the button below and type in the name of a street or an address and see what happens. If you don’t know where to start, type in Kevin Street and click Search. You’ll…

Hear about and SEE the Portobello Zoological and Pleasure Gardens

Listen to this fascinating five minute piece by Henrietta McKervey about the Portobello Zoo that was between South Circular Road (where the red church that is now apartments is) and the Grand Canal. Colm Fahy has even made a 3-D Visual Representation of them and you can see it below.

Search the RTÉ Archives

You can search through thousands of hours of old RTÉ footage and 150,000 photos easily. “Combining hundreds of thousands of hours of moving image and sound recordings together with significant collections of photographs, manuscripts and administrative documents, RTÉ Archives contain a unique record of Irish life.” RTÉ Click one of these buttons: In this episode…

Search the 1901 or 1911 Census

A great way to find out about the lives of of the people who lived on your street or even in your home is to search the 1901 and 1911 census. If your street was built after you could look at old maps to see what was there before look that up instead Click on…

Old Maps of Dublin

One of the best ways to step back through time and see what “used to be” is to look at old maps. Thankfully these are easier to access than ever and there are many old maps you can access right now, online, for free by following any of the following links:

Welcome!

I’m glad you found us. This page is an ever-evolving portal for local history, places of interest and and stories about what you might find “a stone’s throw” from Kevin Street Library. If you would prefer to read this in another language you should find a Google Translate tool at either the bottom or top…