The old ones are the best.
But as time marches on, countless stories, photographs and first-hand accounts are lost forever to the sands of time.
Now a new platform is aiming to carefully preserve these memories so they can be enjoyed by generations of Cork folk to come.
The People’s Archive aims to explore and showcase ordinary life in Cork City against the backdrop of extraordinary events such as the 1916 Rising, the first sitting of Dáil Eireann, the struggle for Independence, the foundation of the Irish Free State, Partition, the Civil War and many other key events and themes from the period.
The team behind the project is inviting members of the public to share original photographs, stories, and materials such as letters and diary entries that vividly illustrate life in Cork City between the years of 1913 and 1923.
These objects will be photographed, documented, and presented in The Revolution Collection on thepeoplesarchive.ie.
The idea for the website came about when Kerry Sloane was spring-cleaning during the first lockdown. He discovered in his own home a first edition copy of the Revolutionist, a play by Terence MacSwiney, the former Lord Mayor of Cork.
A discussion with historian Doireann Markham turned to the wealth of treasures potentially lying away in other attics in Cork.
“We have been extremely fortunate to have the support of Cork City Council in bringing this idea to life,” said Sloane.
“It is a special thing to get to shine the spotlight on overlooked stories and a privilege to be able to highlight ordinary experiences and thus offer new perspectives on such a formative period in Ireland’s history.”
Image: Mary Barrett reading The Revolutionist a play by Terence MacSwiney at the launch of The People’s Archive. Picture: Clare Keogh.