"Dublin, Capital City of Ireland," a ten-minute Irish travelogue from 1940, is now available to stream for free on the Irish Film Institute's IFI Archive Player.
This silent tourism film made for the Irish Tourist Association (the precursor of Bord Fáilte and Fáilte Ireland) provides a warmly-hued panorama of 1940s Dublin.
Dublin is presented as a city of romance and contrasts which has survived countless changes through a thousand years of history.
On this particular day, Croke Park was packed to capacity as Limerick took on Kilkenny in the 1940 All Ireland Hurling Final.
Going into the city centre, Dublin trams can be seen passing through a busy O’Connell Street, past Nelson’s Pillar (now home to The Spire) towards Bank of Ireland on College Green.
The infamous Moore Street Market is a hive of activity, full of busy shoppers looking for a bargain, in complete contrast to the tranquil gardens of Stephen’s Green, where people are sprawled out on sun loungers making the most of a blissfully sunny day.
As the film proudly states, “to the visitor, it is a city of pleasure offering every amenity for enjoyment and happiness."
"Dublin, Capital City of Ireland" is a part of the IFI's Bord Fáilte Film Collection.
The Irish Film Institute’s Bord Fáilte Film Collection
Some of the largest collections held by the IFI Irish Film Archive come from Government departments and State and semi-state bodies. Apart from their educational and entertainment value in a country that did not have its own television station until 1961, these state-sponsored produced films are noteworthy not only for their high production values and interesting content, but also for the calibre of those involved in their creation.
Luminaries of the Irish acting world would often make appearances, and at a time when the Irish film industry was underdeveloped and opportunities for technical training were limited, important figures such as Louis Marcus, Bob Monks, Colm Ó Laoghaire, George Fleischmann, Gerard Healy, and Rex Roberts all found gainful employment in their production.
Films made for Bord Fáilte provide not only a beautiful record of Ireland’s landscape and topography throughout the 20th century, but also serve to illustrate the development of the Irish tourist industry and the image that ‘brand’ Ireland was endeavouring to project, as it marketed itself as an international tourist destination.
“Dublin, Capital City of Ireland” is published here with kind permission of Fáilte Ireland and thanks to the Irish Film Institute (IFI), who IrishCentral has partnered up with throughout 2022 to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collection entails. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.
To watch more historic Irish footage, visit the IFI Archive Player, the Irish Film Institute’s virtual viewing room that provides audiences around the globe free, instant access to Irish heritage preserved in the IFI Irish Film Archive. Irish Culture from the last century is reflected through documentaries, animation, adverts, amateur footage, feature films, and much more. You can also download the IFI Archive Player App for free on iPhone, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Roku.
IrishCentral has partnered up with the IFI throughout 2022 to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collections entail. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.