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Junior Cycle Teacher Resources

Voices from the Past

Syllabus links:

Oral histories are recordings of people talking about their memories of the past. They are one type of evidence we have of what life was like for people in times gone by. 14 Henrietta Street has many oral histories about tenement life. They are recordings of people who lived in tenements across Dublin, and cover topics such as food and drink, school, play and games, and moving to the suburbs. Oral histories are collected by interviewing people about different subjects, and asking them questions about what they remember of a particular time.

Many people still remember growing up in the tenements during the 20th century. Oral histories are a great way to capture these living memories and paint a vivid picture of what life was like in Dublin’s tenements.

Because most of the people we talk to were children at the time, we have a rich collection of accounts of what tenement life was like from the perspective of a child. The interviews below are with former tenement residents, and cover all aspects of daily life.

Births & Deaths


Daily Life


Moving to the Suburbs

School Life

The Sense of Community

Special Occasions

Working Life

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