Hundreds of videos of historic Irish events and characters have been made available to the public after the British news company Pathé transferred the recordings from old news reels to digital videos.
Key figures from Ireland’s past such as Michael Collins and Countess Markievicz are among the many historic characters to have been recorded. The devastation caused to Dublin during the Easter Rising is also now available to view.
As well as famous Irish sporting victories such as the rugby victory over England in 1948, that helped Ireland win their first ever Grand Slam.
The recordings were shown in cinemas throughout much of the early 20th century. They would appear as news bulletins before the film was shown, in the same way we now see adverts and trailers before a movie.
Then when televisions became common in Irish and British households, the news was brought to people on a daily basis and so the cinema news bulletins became out of date.
Grants to transfer Pathé news to digital media
There are thousands of videos produced by Pathé, and they have only now become available after the owners received a grant to help fund the transfer of the recordings onto digital media.
Other historic events from around the world were also recorded by Pathé. Just some of the events now available to see are the Wright Brother’s first flight in 1903, the Hindenburg Disaster in 1931, and the erection of the Berlin Wall in 1961.
The sudden accessibility to these videos is a major breakthrough for historians, with original source material now readily available to all.
Here a just a few of the thousands of videos now available.
Dublin during the Easter Rising, 1916
Michael Collins electioneering in Ireland, 1922
Countess Markievicz in Sinn Fein, 1922
Ireland’s rugby victory over England, 1948
Wright Brothers’ First Flight, 1903
Hindenburg Disaster, 1937