Magdalene Laundries archive to be searchable online

Papers and pictures from Justice for Magdalenes group digitally filed by WIT

The former Magdalene laundry on Stanhope Street in Dublin. Photograph: Cyril Byrne / The Irish Times

The former Magdalene laundry on Stanhope Street in Dublin. Photograph: Cyril Byrne / The Irish Times

 

An archive of papers and images donated by the Justice for Magdalenes research group is due to be made fully searchable online by Waterford Institute of Technology.

Researchers at the institute were awarded funding through the Heritage Council’s Heritage Management Grant Scheme 2016 to digitally conserve and manage the archive.

The project, which is being supervised by Dr Jennifer Yeager, Kieran Cronin and research assistant Sue Goona, will create an online search facility.

According to Dr Yeager, “analyses of the laundries are constrained by the lack of access to the records of the religious orders, resulting in an absence of intervention, as well as a failure to remember officially. Official documentation is essential in order to encourage public engagement with Magdalene history.”

In 2012, the Justice for Magdalenes research group submitted a 145-page document entitled “State involvement with the Magdalene Laundries” to an interdepartmental committee.