Analecta Hibernica No 53: Special Issue — The Fire of 1922


For a full list of the papers included in this volume see the description below.

This special issue of IMC’s serial publication marks the centenary of the destruction of the Public Record Office of Ireland in the Four Courts fire of 1922.

Since IMC’s foundation in 1928, recovering from the disaster of 1922 has been central to its mission. This special issue of Analecta Hibernica is a collaboration with the Virtual Record Treasury of Ireland and contains a selection of previously unseen and unexamined documents from seven centuries of Irish history saved from the aftermath of the fire on 30 June 1922 which destroyed the Record Treasury. Included in this issue is a paper which lists for the first time all salved records — those conserved before 2017 and c. 370 bundles assessed for conservation after that date. Analecta Hibernica No. 53 concludes with a photographic essay — 19 colour illustrations which provide a visual sample of original records and transcriptions that survived the blaze. These images convey at once the range of documentary formats found in the PROI before 1922 and their varied states of preservation after exposure to fire and the elements. Finally, the essay looks at the techniques used first to protect and then to conserve these precious records.


Including the following papers: ‘For fear of oblivion’: Archival fragility and persistence from the Middle Ages to 1922 — and beyond (P. Crooks, E. Johnston and T. Murtagh); The salved records of 1922 (P. Crooks and Z. Reid with J. Baldwin, C. Fahy and B. Gurrin); The state of the Irish Exchequer, c. 1284 (E. Biggs and P. Dryburgh); ‘Of old time annexed to your crown’: Documents on the Irish parliament and the crisis of 1441–2 (P. Crooks and L. Kilgallon); Early membership lists of the Dublin Guild of Carpenters, 1514–20 (S. Hendriks); An invitation to an early modern Irish funeral or a celebration? (B. McGrath); The ‘humble desires’ of the General Convention of Ireland, 1660 (N. Johnston); Financing counter- revolution: A ledger from the Irish Government Consol, 1797–9 (D. Brown); Notes from the Chief Secretary’s office: Edward Cooke’s letters to Sir Edward Hill, 1795–1802 (T. Murtagh); Surviving returns from the 1813–15 census of Ireland (B. Gurrin); Documents and destruction: Selections from the Public Record Office of Ireland Correspondence Collection at the National Archives, Ireland, 1867–1922 (C. Wallace); The survivors: A photographic essay (P. Crooks, B. Gurrin and Z. Reid with J. Baldwin, P. Dryburgh and C. Wallace).

Additional information

Edited by

Elva Johnston, Peter Crooks, Timothy Murtagh



Publish Date

November 2023