Launch of the first release of material from the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection
An Taoiseach Enda Kenny, retired Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave son of Easter Rising veteran W.T Cosgrave and the Officer In Charge of Military Archives Commandant Pádraic Kennedy
Taoiseach Enda Kenny launched the first release on line of material from the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection at the G.P.O., O’Connell Street yesterday evening. This event was part of the National Commemorative Programme, co-ordinated by Heritage Minister Jimmy Deenihan.
The Military Service Pensions Archive project is a cornerstone project of the Government Decade of Centenaries 2012-2022 Commemorative programme and the Collection numbers almost 300,000 application files for pensions, allowances and medals as well as supporting documentation. This first online release of material from the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection is primarily focused on the participants of the 1916 Rising. Future releases of material from the Military Service Pensions Collection will take place over the coming years. The material is available at www.militaryarchives.ie
In launching the release of material on line, the Taoiseach said:
As well as bringing the era to life for a new generation, this online archive will provide a great resource for those already interested in the period. It is an important part of the Government's Centenary Commemoration Programme and honours the memory of those who lived and served their country during this defining period in Irish history.
Minister Shatter said:
The Collection records the personal commitment and sacrifice by those men and women who shouldered the task of gaining independence for this country. The release of these records to researchers will transform the scholarship of the period, and provide Irish people at home and abroad with fascinating and copious information about their ancestors who played a part in the establishment of independent Ireland.
Minister Shatter was also delighted to announce that funding has been made available over the period 2014 to 2016 for the provision of a Military Archive facility at Cathal Brugha Barracks as part of the Government’s Decade of Commemorations programme.
Welcoming the release of the Material, Minister Deenihan said:
I would emphasise the opportunity this archive presents members of the public to see the records of their ancestors, members of a remarkable generation. This archive will greatly facilitate research of this period of history, bringing it within the reach of all. Also, in this the year when we will commemorate the centenary of the foundation of Cumann na mBan, these archives will shine a light on the significant - but often overlooked - contribution that women made to the struggle for Irish independence.