Friday, 3 June 2011

PRONI exhibition on a century of conflict and change

Thanks to Gavin McMahon at PRONI ( for the following:

Launch of PRONI Exhibition – A century of change, conflict and transformation

The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) is pleased to announce the opening of its first exhibition at the new state-of-the-art Headquarters in Titanic Quarter, Belfast. The exhibition entitled 'A Century of Change, Conflict and Transformation' covers the period 1911 up until the present day, and depicts not just changes in society but also changes in the records that we keep. The exhibition opened at PRONI on 25th May, and runs until 2012.

The exhibition touches upon the major events of the period and makes particular reference to the themes of governance, leisure, economy and society. There is a centrepiece display on the Blitz experience in Northern Ireland, which includes a replica Anderson Shelter. The exhibition also charts the changes in the type of media used to record information over the years and how the digital age may affect how future generations access their 'history'. Starting with 1911 diaries, it concludes with social network blogs.

Director of PRONI, Aileen McClintock said: “The exhibition showcases some of the treasures contained within the archives held by PRONI. It is a tremendous opportunity to display the archival heritage of Northern Ireland in this dedicated exhibition space. It marks an opportunity for us to reach out to whole new audiences such as school groups who will be able to see actual archive material on display. We would encourage anybody with an interest to come and visit the exhibition. There is something for everybody, from World War 2 ration books to photographs of the Delorean sports car”.

The exhibition comprises storyboards, interactive audio visual content and three cabinets displaying original documents and artefacts. Particular documents of interest include a diary of Molly Duffin containing a narrative of day to day life of a 19 year old girl growing up in Belfast in 1911; World War II pilot’s log book and medals of Wing Commander Ken McKenzie; applications to work in Northern Ireland (under the New Industries Act) received from Austrian Jews escaping persecution in Europe; correspondence relating to the debate on Capital Punishment.


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