The Little Museum of Dublin has brought history to life with 15 short films covering nugget-sized pieces of Ireland’s history. This week’s topic is Henrietta Street, in the north Dublin city center, home to the Tenement Museum.
The series, "The Little History of Dublin," tells the story of this great city in 15 bite-sized clips. Made with the generous support of Aer Lingus and the Department of Foreign Affairs, the films are now finding a global audience on IrishCentral.
Presented by ‘Professor’ Jamie Harrington – proud young Dub and YouTube sensation – the films cover subjects as diverse as Alfie Byrne, Maureen O’Hara and Switzer’s Department Store.
The Little Museum, voted the number one museum in Dublin on Yelp, is located on St. Stephen’s Green, in a beautiful Georgian building. The collection, created by public donation, reveals the history of the city over more than 100 years, from Queen Victoria’s visit to U2’s global success. Entry to the museum is by guided tour only and most tours sell out.
As Prof. Harrington explained, in the 1911 Census of Dublin we can see that there are 15 house built on Henrietta Street, just off Bolton Street, in Dublin 1. However, 835 people called this street home in cramped and squalid tenements.
Here’s some more insight into the living conditions on Henrietta Street at the time:
The street was first developed by Luke Gardiner during the 1720s. A very wide street relative to streets in other 18th century cities, it includes a number of very large red-brick city palaces of Georgian design. Construction was still taking place in the 1750s.
The street was popularly referred to as Primate's Hill, as one of the houses was owned by the Archbishop of Armagh, although this house, along with two others, was demolished to make way for the Law Library of King's Inns.
The street fell into disrepair during the 19th and 20th centuries, with the houses being used as tenements, but has been the subject of restoration efforts in recent years. There are currently 13 houses on the street.
It is also a popular period location for film and TV companies and productions such as “Albert Nobbs,” “Inspector George Gently,” and “Foyle's War” have filmed there.
Speaking about the series of clips Museum Director Wissame Cherfi explained that “The idea was to create a series of videos that are fun and informative. I’ve always thought that the best way to learn and remember something is to have fun while doing it. We also wanted the films to be accessible to a broad audience, reaching young and old alike.”
“Casting Jamie Harrington as the main character in the films was instinctive,” says Wissame, “as I have worked with Jamie on a couple of projects in the past and I knew he was the right fit. His natural talent allowed us to experiment a lot in terms of directing and creating the right character so that everyone can relate to him.”
We had great fun making these films and we really hope you'll enjoy watching them – and that you will, hopefully, learn something new about Dublin's rich history.
For more information visit www.littlemuseum.ie.