- 11 Feb 20
The donation will comprise over 6,000 photographs documenting various aspects of the marriage equality campaign.
The National Library of Ireland (NLI) announced 11th February that they will partner with Yes Equality for their 'Digital Pilots' project.
Yes Equality is the organisation that led the nationwide campaign to secure a 'yes' vote in the marriage equality referendum in May 2015. The announcement comes as one of several activities within a wider LGBTQ+ programme of events to take place in 2020, including a series of talks and panel discussions related to LGBTQ+ history in Ireland.
The donated archive is a visual record of the activities of Yes Equality, and comprises over 6,000 photographs commissioned by the organisation. It documents various aspects of the campaign, including activities that tell the personal stories of campaigners and their families and friends, voting day, and post-result celebrations.
The NLI Digital Pilots aim to expand the ways the Library collects and provides access to the ‘born-digital’ story of Ireland, enabling content like videos, digital documents and digital images to become part of the national collections.
Speaking at the announcement, Director of the National Library, Dr Sandra Collins said, “As Ireland’s memory-keeper, the Library is committed to collecting and safeguarding Ireland’s many voices and diverse experiences. It’s very important to us that everyone feels welcome, visible and included. Today’s announcement highlights the important place contemporary collecting has always had in the Library’s work, capturing civil rights movements and documenting social change as it happens."
Co-leaders of Yes Equality, Gráinne Healy and Brian Sheehan said, “Five years on from that historic day in May 2015, when Ireland voted decisively and overwhelmingly in favour of marriage equality, we are happy to be in the National Library of Ireland to revisit the energy and optimism of that campaign. The archive reflects a campaign that was rooted in the real, lived experience and personal stories of ordinary people, which contributed to an extraordinary outcome. As a place in which important stories have been written, told and remembered throughout Irish history, it is an honour to donate this archive to the Library and add to that collection. We look forward to working with the Library to make this archive available to as wide an audience as possible.”