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Letters of 1916

Internal/External Partners if any

Language of Materials
English & Irish

Media Types
Full text, images.

The Letters of 1916 project is the first public humanities project in Ireland. It is creating a crowd-sourced digital collection of letters written around the time of the Easter Rising (1 November 1915 – 31 October 1916). Phase I of the project was initiated in September of 2013 and has focused on the collection and digitisation of letters, the curation of the metadata, and the transcription (and, where necessary, translation) of the body of the letter.

As of October of 2015, the project has collected more than 2,400 letters with just over 2,200 available to the public for transcription. Letters have been deposited by over 20 cultural institutions in Ireland and abroad, as well as almost 50 private collections.

Phase II of the project, which is the demonstrator project for the DRI,  will formally launch in December of 2015 and will focus on the creation of a fully-searchable online archive of images and the letters (which will be encoded according to the TEI Guidelines) allowing researchers as well as the general public unprecedented access to the lives of those in Ireland and those connected with Ireland abroad. The collection includes letters by the vast majority of major figures connected with the Easter Rising, but there are also many letters from less well-known figures, providing an unprecedented glimpse into ordinary life in Ireland a century ago.

As Phase II of the project progresses throughout 2016, additional data visualisations will be added to support the analysis of the letters using a big data approach.

Demonstrator deliverables

This project will deliver a significant corpus of materials to the DRI. Additionally, it is the only TEI (Text Encoding Initiative)-based demonstrator.