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Zambian Mission

Since the formation of the Irish Province in 1860, Irish Jesuits have undertaken three main overseas missions (Australia, Hong Kong and Zambia). More than 120 Irish Jesuits have worked in Zambia. The Vice-Province of Zambia was formed in 1969 and the Province of Zambia and Malawi was established in 1992. The Irish Jesuits' work in Zambia is complemented by other Jesuit Provinces such as: Canada; Croatia; Oregon; Poland and Slovenia. The papers of the Zambian Mission chronicle the life and work of Irish Jesuits since their arrival, in what was then Northern Rhodesia, in 1946. The files of correspondence between Irish Jesuits working in Zambia and their Irish Provincials in Dublin illustrate the areas of work that they laboured in: parish work, education and development. Geographically, this took place in the southern part of the country and in the capital, Lusaka. The impact of the Irish presence is seen especially in Canisius High School and Charles Lwanga College of Education in Chikuni, the parishes in the Monze Diocese, and development projects around the diocese.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Catholic University of Ireland and University College, Dublin

  • IE IJA UNIV
  • Fonds
  • 1873-2000

The Catholic University of Ireland was formally inaugurated in 1854 with John H. Newman as rector. The Royal University of Ireland was an examining body only and did not provide tuition. In October 1883 the trustees of the Catholic University of Ireland leased to the Society of Jesus the University buildings of 84 and 85 with gardens, and the two uppermost stories of 86 St. Stephen’s Green (includingt the Aula Maxima and rooms over it) which were given the new name of University College, Dublin. In 1908 the National University of Ireland came into existence. In 1909 the Jesuit community left St Stephen’s Green for a new residence at 35 Lower Leeson Street.

Papers of the Catholic University (1854), the Royal University of Ireland (1883 - 1908) called University College Dublin and the National University of Ireland (1908), St. Stephen’s Green.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, County Offaly

Catalogue available here: https://www.offalyarchives.com/index.php/irish-jesuit-archives

The Jesuits bought Tullabeg in 1818 (dedicated it to St Stanislaus) and opened a preparatory school for boys destined to go to Clongowes Wood College, Kildare. St Stanislaus College gradually developed as an educational rival to its sister school. It merged with Clongowes Wood College in 1886. Tullabeg then became a house of Jesuit formation: novitiate (1888-1930), juniorate (1895-1911), tertianship (1911-1927) and philosophate (1930-1962). In 1962, it was decided that the students of philosophy should be sent abroad for study. Tullabeg subsequently became a retreat house and was closed in May 1991.

The papers of St Stanislaus College include information on a history of the area around Tullabeg, building and property (1912-2004), correspondence with Superiors (1881-1971), finance (1912-1990), documents on Jesuit training (1818-1962), retreat house (1949-1960) and artworks (1940-1991).

Material is in the form of letters, reports, architectural plans, notes, maps and photographs (1902-1990). Programmes for plays include Shrovetide at St. Stanislaus College, Tullamore; ‘The Man with the Iron Mask’, ‘All at Coventry’ and ‘The Smoked Miser’ (1885) and for ‘Caitlín Ní Uallacáin’ and ‘Cox and Box’ and details Jesuits who performed (1925).

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

General Sir Thomas Kelly-Kenny

  • IE IJA TKK
  • Fonds
  • 1809-2013
  • History of General Sir Thomas Kelly-Kenny collection;
  • Lithographs & Posters;
  • Military;
  • Scottish Widows’ Fund and Life Assurance Society, Finance and Ireland;
  • Correspondence;
  • Boer War;
  • 1906 Travels.

Kelly-Kenny, Sir Thomas, 1840-1914, General

Sodality of Our Lady and Christian Life Communities

  • IE IJA SOD
  • Fonds
  • 1853-1985

The Sodality of Our Lady, an association formed by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) and approved by the Holy See, was a religious body which aimed at fostering in its members an ardent devotion, reverence and filial love towards the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary & St Patrick was canonically erected in the Church of St Francis Xavier, Upper Gardiner Street on 1st May, 1853. Members of a sodality would attend devotions in the evening time or at weekends.

The material documents the creation of sodalities in Ireland from 1863 to 1960. This is known as ‘aggregation to the Primae Primariae’ and sodalities were formed in many colleges, convents, hospitals, parishes, and schools. Sodality booklets and newsletters provide background and history to the work of sodalities in Ireland.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Irish College, Seville

The Irish Jesuit College at Seville was established in 1608/12. For diplomatic reasons the title of Rector was held by a Spanish Jesuit. successively at Santiago (1612) and Seville (1619).

Jesuit colleges in Ireland

  • IE IJA SC
  • Fonds
  • 1627-2021

Clongowes Wood College SJ, County Kildare
Coláiste Iognáid, (St. Ignatius’ College), Galway City, County Galway
Mungret College, Mungret, County Limerick
Crescent College Comprehensive SJ, Limerick City, County Limerick
Belvedere College SJ, Dublin City, County Dublin
Gonzaga College SJ, Dublin City, County Dublin
St Declan's School, Dublin City, County Dublin

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Irish College, Santiago de Compostela

The Irish Jesuit College at Santiago de Compostela was established in 1605. Fr Thomas White SJ (1558-1622) founded Salamanca and went on to become Vice-Rector (for diplomatic reasons the title of Rector was held by a Spanish Jesuit) successively at Santiago (1612) and Seville (1619).

Special Collections

  • IE IJA S
  • Fonds
  • 1570-2020

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

In 1913, the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) purchased the 16th century-built Rathfarnham Castle from a Dublin building company, Bailey and Gibson. Initially, the plan was for a noviciate for Jesuit novices and in time, for working men’s retreats to be established at the Castle. However, by September 1913, this had changed to a house of studies for those Jesuits attending university. This decision was made following the change of regulations to the National University requiring students to attend lectures whereas previously they could be prepared for examinations elsewhere. The Jesuit Juniors as they were known would live at the Castle and cycle to lectures at University College Dublin, then located at Earlsfort Terrace in the centre of Dublin.

The papers of Rathfarnham Castle concern: the management of Rathfarnham Castle (1911-1995); the Jesuit community (1913-1985); the history of Rathfarnham Castle (1912-1994); the farm (1917-1920); the seismograph (1918-1954) and retreats (1922-1995). Material is in the form of letters, plans, maps and photographs.

Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

Jesuits in Ireland pre-1773

  • IE IJA OLD
  • Fonds
  • 1540-2020

History of the Old Society
Catalogues, lists, necrologies
Information on individual Jesuits
Compilations of biographical notes
Transcripts of biographical notes
Jesuit Foundations in different counties

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Mungret College, Limerick

The papers provide an insight into the daily workings of the Mungret College, as well as the Jesuit community who resided there. The bulk of material relates to correspondence, deeds, leases, minutes, account books, custom books, photographs, diaries and journals. Includes reference to:

  • the establishment of Mungret College in 1882 (including references to the Mungret Model Farm and school), purchase of the site and deeds;
  • correspondence between Lord Emly, Tervoe, (1812-1894), Limerick and Fr William Ronan SJ (1825-1907) concerning Mungret;
  • Fr William Ronan SJ (1825-1907) - biographical information, letters to Irish Fr Provincial on establishment of Mungret (1880-1882), fund-raising Tour (1882-1893), letters written by Fr Ronan SJ (1882-1896);
  • lists, registers, catalogues and results of students to the Apostolic and Lay school;
  • accounts for Mungret College (1882-1928);

Fr Thomas Morrissey SJ has researched the history of Mungret College and his research notes are included in the papers.

Mungret College, Limerick, 1882-1974

Irish Jesuit Missions

  • IE IJA MSSN
  • Fonds
  • 1812 - 2020

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Manuscript B

  • IE IJA MSSB
  • Series
  • 1576-1673

Twenty-five of the manuscripts are letters to Fr General from non-Jesuits.

Irish Mission of the Society of Jesus, 1542-1773

Manuscript A

  • IE IJA MSSA
  • Series
  • 1577-1758

Irish Mission of the Society of Jesus, 1542-1773

Milltown Park, Dublin

The papers of Milltown Park concern the Jesuit community (1861-1979) and works which have occurred there: Tabor House (1969-1993); The Milltown Institute (1968-1992) and The Irish School of Ecumenics (1969-1980). There are references to the missions, chaplaincy, villas, finances, customs, property retreats, library, customs, rules, studies, health, staff, ordinations, the establishment and eventual closure of a retreat centre at Tabor House, the foundation of courses in theology and philosophy for the training of religious and lay people, Milltown Lectures (1960-1970), Lay Retreat Association and the establishment of the Irish School of Ecumenics.

Material is in the form of handwritten letters, ledgers, postcards, accounts, architectural plans, cuttings from newspapers, maps, photographs, menus, bills and receipts.

Milltown Park, Dublin, 1858-

Manresa House, Dollymount, Dublin

The present community house at Manresa was originally known as Granby Hall and then as Baymount Castle, being at one time the residence of Dr Traill, a northern Church of Ireland Bishop. Renovated in 1838 by Robert Warren, it was later owned by the Irish Loreto Sisters who had a school there. Gutted by fire in 1851, the Sisters had it renovated again, sold it, and moved to Balbriggan.
In 1898 it became the property of Lord Ardilaun, a member of the Guinness family and owner of the adjoining St Anne’s estate. About the beginning of the First World War, William Lucas Scott opened a preparatory school for boys which continued until 1936, when it was acquired by John T Gwynn, of the well-known literary family (relative of Jesuit Aubrey Gwynn). In 1948 the Archbishop of Dublin asked the Jesuits to establish a northside retreat house, and Baymount Castle, with its 17 acres, was bought by them.

Retreats began in 1949. Construction of a new retreat house began in 1966 to the design of architect Andrew Devane of the firm Robinson, Keefe and Devane; it was opened in 1967. In 1969, the Irish Jesuit novitiate moved from St Mary's, Emo Court, County Laois to Manresa, where it was situated until 1991.

The papers of Manresa House, Dollymount, Dublin concern the early history of the house, financial issues, building and development, retreat work and the horse show at Manresa (1963-1973). There are references to the artworks of Richard Enda King and Evie Hone. Material is in the form of letters, ledgers, architectural plans, maps and photographs.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Irish College, Lisbon

The Irish Jesuit College at Lisbon was established in 1590.
Two bound volumes relating to the Irish College, Lisbon concern the foundation of the college, accounts, custom book and statutes. Analysis of the documents relating to the Irish College, Lisbon by Fr Francis Finegan SJ (1909-2011).

St Ignatius House of Writers, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin

In 1883 the trustees of the Catholic University leased to the Society of Jesus the University buildings of 84, 85 and 86 St. Stephen’s Green which were given the new name of University College, Dublin. In 1908 the National University of Ireland came into existence and with that, the Jesuit community left St. Stephen’s Green for a new residence at Lower Leeson Street in 1909/10. Known as St Ignatius House of Writers since 1952, previously the house saw itself as a Collegiun Inchoatum, a burgeoning college of the National University. Many of the Jesuits who lived in the house taught at University College Dublin.

The Jesuit journal 'Studies: An Irish Quarterly Review', 'the devotional magazine 'The Sacred Heart Messenger' and the Irish language equivalent, 'An Timire', are published from Lower Leeson Street.

University Hall, also known as Hatch Hall, was a student hall of residence at Lower Hatch Street, Dublin. Founded by the Jesuits in 1913, for third level male students studying in Dublin, it was under the administration of the Superior of 35 Lower Leeson Street until 1975. It closed in 2004.

The Irish Jesuit Archives has been located at Lower Leeson Street since 1958 when it moved from Upper Gardiner Street.

The papers of St Ignatius House of Writers, Lower Leeson Street deal with the interior and exterior of the buildings, renovations, deeds, domestic and Jesuit community matters and finance. For University Hall, the material relates to bequests, property issues, stained glass, examinations and accounts. There is a small amount of material on Studies, the Sacred Heart Messenger and An Timire. The material is mainly in the form of letters, ledgers, architectural plans, maps and photographs.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Killiney Castle, Dublin

In 1873 the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) purchased Killiney Castle to be used as a villa house (holiday). The events leading up to the purchase of this property were quite long and protracted. In a memorandum written by Fr William Delany SJ (1835-1924), CM/KILL/3, he describes how the Society came across Killiney Castle and the negotiations that took place to secure its purchase. After viewing the property the Jesuit Fathers were very inclined towards it and decided to make an offer of £11,000 for the Castle and its estate. However, before the deal was finally settled Fr Nicolas Walsh SJ (1826-1914) Provincial, insisted, despite grave objections by some of the other priests, on telling the Cardinal (Paul Cullen).

This action proved to be a mistake with the Cardinal reacting negatively to the property deal (permission from the Cardinal was necessary for the establishment of a new religious house but not for the purchase of a property). Fr Delany describes how it was now too late to back out of the deal and insisted on informing the owner of Killiney Castle (Mr. Warren) of the difficulty that had arisen. Fr Delany was also delegated to pay a visit to the Cardinal to plead the case on behalf of the Society and to outline their plans for the property. Again the Cardinal was not supportive, particularly when it was mentioned that the Society of Jesus were thinking of opening a school for boys. Eventually an agreement was reached that the property could be bought but that a decision as to how it would be utilised would have to be deferred. Because of the delay Fr Delany discovered, after his meeting with the Cardinal, that another offer had been made and accepted. This second obstacle made it necessary for Fr Delany to enter another set of negotiations to purchase the property from Mr. Richard Martin for the sum of £12,250.

Following the purchase of the property in 1873 by the Society of Jesus a good deal of structural and maintenance work was carried out e.g. CM/KILL/4 and CM/KILL/8 - CM/KILL/13. Despite the work carried out and the outlay of money on improving the Castle and grounds the Society made a decision to sell the property only six years later in 1879 to Mr. Chippindale Higgin CM/KILL/33. It would appear that the Castle and estate were sold at a loss to the Society. The collection does not reveal why the Society decided to sell Killiney Castle. However, the collection does reveal that a number of different parties were interested in purchasing the property e.g. the Brothers of St. John of God in France (CM/KILL/1, CM/KILL/35 and CM/KILL/37), an American gentleman (CM/KILL/36) and Mr. Chippendale Higgin (CM/KILL/33), the eventual purchaser.

It should be noted that the Society of Jesus had two residences in Killiney. In 1853 the Catalogue names the following as residing in Killiney; Robert St. Leger (1788-1856), John St. Leger (1798-1868), William Moloney (1796-1886) and James Reardon (1799-l.1856). This residence was known as Druid Lodge. The preceding Catalogue (1850) makes no mention of a Killiney residence and similarly the succeeding Catalogue (1855) does not refer to a residence in Killiney. It would appear that Druid Lodge was given up by the Society because the Archbishop opposed the construction of a church (CM/KILL/1). The second residence in Killiney was Killiney Castle (1873-1879), the papers of which are represented in this collection.

The papers of Killiney Castle, Dublin deal with the purchase of Killiney Castle by the Society of Jesus, accounts, changes to the exterior and interior, the letting of the Killiney Castle and the eventually sale of Killiney Castle by the Society of Jesus.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Charles Kennedy, 151 Capel Street and 17 Mountjoy Square, Dublin

  • IE IJA KENN
  • Fonds
  • 1871-1901

1871-1901
Material relates to the life and work of Charles Kennedy and to a lesser extent, James Kennedy. Includes large amount of correspondence and receipts.
Material related to Jervis Street Hospital. Includes correspondence, report wills, plans, fundraising committee meetings. 1876 – 1902.
Wills, land details on property on Capel Street, Mountjoy Square; correspondence between Charles Kennedy and business associates, friends and relations including Chief Baron Christopher Palles.
Wills and receipts related to Laurence, Richard and James Devereux, Distillers, Wexford Distillery, Kilkenny and land in Wexford. 1875-1884.
Receipts including from the Royal Yacht Club, the Smithwicks in Kilkenny.

1872-1899
Material relates to nephew of Charles Kennedy, Charles Doyle (sister of Lizzie and Rosetta Doyle). Charles Doyle appears to be a serial conman (at one stage changes his name to Edward Gerard) and Charles Kennedy corresponds with fellow family members in Ireland and abroad, priests in the UK and Citeaux, France and reformatories about Charles Doyle’s criminal behaviour and imprisonment in Austria, the U. S. and France.

Correspondence between Rosetta Doyle, Youghal, Fermoy, Killarney and Taunton, Somerset and her uncle, Charles Kennedy, 151 Capel Street and 17 Mountjoy Square.

1875-1889
Correspondence between Lizzie Doyle, Youghal, Cork and her uncle, Charles Kennedy, 151 Capel Street and 17 Mountjoy Square. Relates to her time as a student at the Loreto convent, Youghal and issues such as family matters, school fees.

Kennedy, Charles, benefactor

Jesuit Refugee Service, Ireland

  • IE IJA JRS
  • Fonds
  • 1985-2009

The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) is an international non-governmental organisation, founded in 1980 with the mission to accompany, to serve and to advocate the cause of refugees and forcibly displaced persons worldwide.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Irish Jesuits

  • IE IJA J
  • Fonds
  • 1540-2021

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Isle of Man Mission

The Isle of Man Mission material details the building of chapels and schools in Douglas and Castletown by Fr Matthew Gahan SJ (1782-1837) and his work on the island. Born in Dublin, he entered the Society at Hodder, Lancashire, England in 1805 and left for the Isle of Man in 1826. He had previously spent 3 months on the island in 1817 and 1825. When he died there in February 1837, the Jesuit mission to the island ended.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Irish Jesuit Colleges in Europe

  • IE IJA ICOL
  • Fonds
  • 1590-2009

The Irish Colleges were established chronologically as follows: Lisbon 1590, Salamanca 1592, Santiago de Compostela 1605, Seville 1608 or 1612, Rome 1628 and Poitiers 1674. Irish Jesuits were involved in the establishment or running of the colleges at Lisbon, Salamanca, Santiago de Compostela and Seville. The colleges were established with the aim of educating and training students for the priesthood and acted as service and social centres for Irish religious communities all over Europe. Fr Thomas White SJ (1558-1622) founded Salamanca. For diplomatic reasons the title of Rector was held by a Spanish Jesuit successively at Santiago (1612) and Seville (1619). Fr John Howling SJ (1543-1599) founded Lisbon.

The material comprises of notes on the Irish Colleges at Lisbon, Poitiers, Salamanca, Santiago de Compostela, Seville and Rome by Frs Edmund Hogan (1831-1917), John MacErlean (1870-1950) and Fergal McGrath (1895-1988). Includes lists of rectors and students of the Colleges.

Two bound volumes relating to the Irish College, Lisbon concern the foundation of the college, accounts, custom book and statutes. Analysis of the documents relating to the Irish College, Lisbon by Fr Francis Finegan SJ (1909-2011).

Irish Mission of the Society of Jesus, 1542-1773

Hong Kong Mission

Many Jesuit Provinces had missions in China before 1926 when the Vicar Apostolic of Hong Kong, Fr Henry Valtorta (1883-1953), invited the Irish Jesuits to his vicariate. In October 1926, Frs George Byrne (1879-1962) and John Neary (1889-1983) left Dublin for Hong Kong, which became a Mission for the Irish Province. They were joined, in early 1927, by Fr Daniel Finn (1886-1936) from Australia and later by Frs Richard Gallagher (1887-1960), Patrick Joy (1892-1970) and Daniel MacDonald (1891-1957).

The initial work of the mission concentrated in Hong Kong, with some teaching in Canton and Macao. Their works involved: reviving the Catholic journal, ‘The Rock’; the opening of a hostel (Ricci Hall) for Chinese Catholic students at the University of Hong Kong (1929-); their involvement in the Regional Seminary, Aberdeen, Hong Kong (1931-1964), Wah Yan College, Hong Kong (1932-) and Wah Yan College, Kowloon (1952-). Some lecturing occurred in the university, in areas such as archaeology, education, engineering, and geography. In Canton, Frs Michael Saul (1884-1932) and Joseph McCullough (1892-1932) died from cholera. Hong Kong was under Japanese occupation 1941 - 1945. The Irish Jesuits organised a school for refugees from Hong Kong in Macao and the Regional Seminary was also moved to Macao. Wah Yan College was closed in 1941 and reopened in 1945. Fr Thomas Ryan’s account “Jesuits under Fire in the siege of Hong Kong 1941” deals fully with this time.

After World War Two, the Irish Jesuits established a language school, student centre and parish in Canton. They were expelled by the Communists in [1953]. Wah Yan College grew and developed and further works included the foundation of a university hostel at Kingsmead Hall, Singapore and at Xavier Hall, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia. Other works of note that Irish Jesuits had a hand in establishing and running in Hong Kong include: the Hong Kong Housing Society (1938); Wah Yan Relief Association (1938); Shoeshine Boys Club (1952-1962); the Credit Union Movement (1962); Rehabilitation Centre for the Handicapped (1962); Catholic Marriage Advisory Council (1963); Road Safety Association for Schools (1964); Industrial Relations Institute (1968); Chinese Opera in English (1960s); Fisherman’s Children School (1960s) and Welfare for Police in the Training School. In 1966, Hong Kong became a Jesuit Vice-Province and in 1985, the Province of Macau-Hong Kong was established. Today, Hong Kong is a unit within the Chinese Jesuit Province.

Over a hundred Irish Jesuits have served in Hong Kong, China, Malaysia and Singapore - 30 of whom are buried in St. Michael’s Cemetery in Hong Kong and two in mainland China.

Irish Jesuit Mission to Hong Kong, 1926-1966

Gonzaga College SJ

In 1947, the decision to open a Jesuit school on the south side of Dublin was taken. The purchase in 1949 of Sandford Lodge and Sandford Hill belonging to the Bewley Estate consisted of 15 acres in Ranelagh, two miles south of Dublin city centre. The college opened on 8 September 1950, with 52 boys registering. The founding Jesuit Superior (and later first Rector) was Fr Charles O'Conor SJ (The O' Conor Don) (1906-1981), and the first Prefect of Studies was Fr Bill White SJ (1912-1988).

The papers of Gonzaga College consist mainly of letters relating to: the foundation of the College (1950); prospectus and rules (1950); annual financial statements and accounts of the school and community (1958-1979); correspondence between the Rectors of Gonzaga College and Irish Jesuit Provincials concerning school and community matters, such as finance, staffing and building (1960-1980); school administration (1970-1988); planning and development (1972-1977); building and renovations (1963-1981); educational affairs such as the teaching of physics, chemistry and religious education (1966-1975). There are only a few early photographs of Gonzaga College (1950-1970).

St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin

The papers of St Francis Xavier’s, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin concentrate on the history and work of the church and community, domestic and spiritual matters, penny dinners, benefactors, general administration, finances, retreats, lectures, novenas, missions, sodalities, relics, the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association and St. Francis Xavier's Hall.

The material is mainly in the form of letters, ledgers, plans, maps and photographs.

St Francis Xavier's, Upper Gardiner Street, Dublin, 1832-

Coláiste Iognáid, Galway

The papers of Coláiste Iognáid (St Ignatius’ College) and the Jesuit community offer an insight into the social, cultural and religious life of Galway. There are documents on the history of the Jesuits in Galway, property details such as deeds, leases and plans of property at Sea Road, Renmore, Sherwood Fields and Nuttall’s Garden, and correspondence with various Bishops of Galway and Jesuit Provincials. These documents illustrate major events in Jesuit community life: the return of the Jesuits and the establishment of a residence and school; building developments, ‘Attacked by Beetle: work to save church roof’ (1939); 1963 centenary celebrations and the erection of St Ignatius as a parish (1971). House histories, minister’s journals, visitations, and consults illuminate the ordinary life of members of the Jesuit community in Galway, ‘we have been hit hard again by the “Flu” (25 February 1919).

Roll books, school diaries, college calendars and school publications, such as ‘Turas na Sóisear’, which detail bicycle outings in the Galway area, with hand-drawn maps and route schedule (1940-1947). The arts and sports at Coláiste Iognáid are documented through photographs, scrapbooks and programmes of plays (The Rising of the Moon by Lady Gregory, 1941, for example), debates, theatre and musicals performances, rowing, rugby and GAA. The administration of the Jesuit school, community and Jesuit-run church provides information on: the role of Irish in the school; staffing; past pupils; Penny Dinners; sodalities; altar notices and masses. Financial papers, which consist of church and college accounts, bequests and intentions, also exemplify church activity and functions.

Coláiste Iognáid SJ, 1862-

Irish Jesuit houses of formation

  • IE IJA FM
  • Fonds
  • 1450-2020

St Mary's, Emo, County Laois
St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, Offaly
Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

St Mary's, Emo, County Laois

Emo Court, County Laois was under Jesuit ownership from 1930 until 1969. Now in the hands of the Office of Public Works, the history of Emo dates back to the Earls of Portarlington in the eighteenth century. The first earl, John Dawson, commissioned the building of Emo Court in 1790; it is one of only a few private houses designed by the architect James Gandon. The Portarlington’s sold Emo in 1920 to the Land Commission and the Jesuits purchased the property in 1930, to be used as a novitiate (house of first formation). The Jesuits found Emo in a dilapidated state, with grass growing up through the floorboards. They made significant structural changes in order for it to function as a novitiate rather than as a family home. Many items were removed however they were stored in the basement (fireplace wrapped in blankets). Renowned photographer, Fr Frank Browne SJ, was one of the first Jesuits to take up residence there and he took many photographs of Emo Court.

In 1969, the Jesuits sold Emo to Major Cholmeley Dering Cholmeley-Harrison. He restored the house, sparing no expense, and donated it to the Irish State in 1995. In 2012 the Office of Public Works opened a permanent exhibition on Fr Frank Browne SJ at Emo Court.

The papers of St Mary’s, Emo concern the management of the Emo estate (1900-1995), establishment of the Jesuit community (1928-1930), maintenance, upkeep and expenditure (1931-1970), forestry and the sale of Emo (1969-1970; 1995). There is some material on the Jesuit community (1934-1962) and novitiate (1930-1969) however there is very little in the way of information on individual novices. Material is in the form of handwritten letters, ledgers, architectural plans, maps and photographs.

Rector/Superior of St Mary's, Emo:
Patrick Kenny (Vice-Superior), 31 July 1930;
Patrick Deevy (Vice-Superior), 29 July 1932;
Joseph Dargan, 1968-1969

Master of Novices, St Mary's, Emo:
Martin Maher; July 1930;
John Coyne;
John Neary; October 1934
Donal O'Sullivan
Paddy Cusack
Joseph Dargan, 1968-1969

St Mary's, Emo, Laois, 1930-1969

Jesuit Chaplains to Irish emigrants in Britain

In the late 1940s, Fr Leonard Sheil SJ (1897-1968) travelled to Britain in an effort to serve Irish emigrants. Fr Sheil was a familiar sight on his motorbike visiting building sites, construction camps, mines, steel works, oil refineries and industrial hostels. Frs Matthew Meade (1912-1992) and Kevin Laheen (1919-2019) also provided missions.

General papers on Irish Jesuit missions;

  • Letters to the Provincial from Irish Jesuit missioners which give their opinions and impression of mission work in England (1960-1961);
  • Irish Episcopal Commission for Emigrants Easter conferences (1960-1977) which concerns the attendance of the Jesuit Provincial (1960-1972) and reports of proceedings, minutes and addresses (1962; 1977);
  • Working Party on the Irish Emigrant Missions in England and Wales (1973);
  • Mission reports and statistics (1966-1975) including Jesuit missions (1966-1970) and Irish Catholic missions in England and Wales (1968; 1974-1975);
  • Jesuit Chaplains in Westminster and Birmingham Archdioceses (1966-1969);
  • Irish Chaplaincy Scheme (1971-1979) including conference reports (1978-1979), details of chaplains and services (1971; 1976-1977) and Jesuit appointments (1974-1979);
  • Irish Centre Advisory Service, Liverpool (1976) and
  • Lillie Road Centre London (1978).

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Jesuit Chaplains in the Vocational Educational Committee Colleges, Dublin

Jesuit involvement as chaplains in VEC (Vocational Educational Committee) Colleges, Dublin can be traced to the early 1940’s when a number of Irish Jesuits taught religion in technical schools in Dublin. From 1951, when Fr John McAvoy SJ (1908-1983) was appointed Spiritual Director of the Centre of Technology in Bolton Street, Jesuits have worked as chaplains at the College of Commerce, Rathmines and at the Colleges of Technology, Bolton Street and Kevin Street.

The material consists of documents which outline the establishment of the College of Technology at Bolton Street; attempts to establish a student centre (1965); chaplains’ correspondence with Fr Provincial on the status and role of chaplains: problems and issues (1965-1973), ‘John Austin House’, 135 North Circular Road (1974) and a proposal to set up Jesuit house in Dominick Street (1976); Fr Provincial’s nominations for chaplains (1968-1976); Archbishop of Dublin’s Planning Commission for V.E.C. Colleges (1971-1972); Role of college chaplains ([ ]; 1973); reports (1973-1978); The V.E.C. and chaplains (1973; 1975).

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Loyola House, Dromore, County Down

In 1883, the Jesuits (Society of Jesus) purchased from Edward and James Quinn, Dromore house and estate in County Down. It had been the former palace of the Church of Ireland bishop of Dromore. The Jesuits renamed it Loyola House, and ran it as a novitiate house (house of first formation for Jesuits). The decision to move to Dromore from Milltown Park, Dublin was twofold. Firstly, Jesuits from University College at Temple Street had moved to Milltown Park, meaning that the building occupied by the novices was required. As a result, Milltown Park was overcrowded and deemed unsuitable as a novitiate. Secondly, Monsignor William McCartan, parish priest of Dromore made an offer of Dromore house and estate to the Jesuits. McCartan had been entrusted in the will of the late Miss Anna Magennis to oversee the establishment of a religious order in Dromore and he encouraged the Jesuits to establish a house in Dromore. In 1887, Fr Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889) wrote two sonnets while staying there. The novitiate house operated for four years and closed in 1888 when the Jesuits novices moved to St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, King’s County. The Jesuits retained possession of the property until January 1918, when it was sold.

The papers of Loyola House, Dromore, Down concern its purchase (1883-1889), legal and rental matters (1883 -1917), finances (1885-1917) and accounts (1883-1887), maintenance (1890-1918) and sale (1896-1918). Includes some historical notes on Dromore. Material is in the form of letters, deeds, plans and maps.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Crescent College Comprehensive SJ

The first Jesuit school in Limerick was founded by Father David Wolfe SJ (1528-c.1578) in 1565. Over the next three hundred years, the Jesuits presence in Limerick ebbed and flowed. By 1640, a Jesuit residence was established at Castle Lane and by 1672, a school was opened near St Mary’s Cathedral. After an interval of eighty-six years from the Suppression of the Society in 1773, the Jesuits returned to Limerick in 1859 after Bishop John Ryan (1784-1864) had invited the Society to establish a school in the city. The school initially opened in 1859 as St Munchin’s College on Hartstonge Street. The pioneer Jesuit community in 1859 were Frs Edward Kelly (1824-1905) (Rector), Thomas Kelly (1829-1898), Peter Foley (1826-1893), Edmund Hogan (1831-1917), Matthew Saurin (1825-1901) and one scholastic, Mr. Matthew Russell (1834-1912). In January 1862, the Jesuits purchased a neighbouring residence, Crescent House. The church building was started in 1864, opened in 1868 and named after the Sacred Heart in 1869. The college had ceased to be a seminary for the diocese in 1867 and was renamed the Sacred Heart College in 1873. Commonly known as the Crescent College, it ceased to be a fee paying school in 1971 and became the Crescent College Comprehensive SJ. In 1973 the Comprehensive moved to a modern greenfield site at Dooradoyle. Later it became a co-educational school and the Crescent Preparatory School was closed in 1976.

The bulk of material in the Crescent College Comprehensive SJ papers relate to: financial matters (1869-1990); community correspondence (1859-1992); performance and examination (1912-1966); pupils (1881-1974); school administration (1870-1971); school sports and theatre (1882-1969); deeds and leases (1809-1998); photographs (1884-1976).

Clongowes Wood College SJ

The papers relate to the Jesuit community who lived at of Clongowes Wood College, with a small amount of material on the College. This includes correspondence, maps, booklets and pamphlets, photographs, and articles on issues such as: the history of Clongowes Wood College ([1719]; 1809-1981); the Jesuit community - general administration, customs, finances, house histories and annual letters (1816-1989); College - prospectus, fees, pupils, sodalities, examinations, timetables and subjects, debating society, dramatics, teaching staff (1820-1964); photographs - chapels, students, community, exterior & interior, teaching staff (188[ ]-1977).

Clongowes Wood College SJ, County Kildare, 1814-

Irish Jesuit chaplains

  • IE IJA CHP
  • Fonds
  • 1895-2020

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice

  • IE IJA CFJ
  • Fonds
  • 1978-1999

The Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice is an agency of the Irish Jesuit Province, dedicated to undertaking social analysis and theological reflection in relation to issues of social justice, including housing and homelessness, penal policy, environmental justice, and economic ethics. Established in 1978 by a small group of Jesuits living and working in Ballymun, on the northside of Dublin city, the Centre was intended to promote social justice and critically examine issues of structural injustice and poverty.

The Centre was founded in 1980, when Ireland was in the midst of serious economic recession, unemployment, and emigration.

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

Belvedere College SJ

The papers of Belvedere College (St Francis Xavier College) give an insight into the life of the school and the Jesuit community who lived there. The material includes prospectuses, some photographs of pupils, programmes of College theatricals, school administration, financial accounts, leases, property negotiations, daily life of Jesuits, building works and Belvedere College Union.

Belvedere College SJ, Dublin, 1832-

Australian Mission

The Irish Jesuit Mission to Australia was initiated due to the will of Fr John Joseph Therry (1790-1864), who named the Irish Jesuits as beneficiaries to his property in Australia, and by an invitation to the Irish Province by James Alipius Goold, Bishop of Melbourne (later Archbishop) (1812-1886) to set-up a mission in his diocese. The first two Irish Jesuits, Frs William Lentaigne (1805-1884) and William Kelly (1823-1909), arrived in Melbourne in September 1865. Previously, two Austrian Jesuits, Frs. Kranewitter (1817-1880) and Klinkowstroem (1819-1896) had arrived in 1848 after Jesuit expulsion from Austria. The Austrian Mission centred on South Australia and the Northern Territory. In 1901, the Austrian and Irish missions amalgamated. Australia was made a Vice-Province in 1931 and Fr Austin Kelly SJ (1891-1978) was named the first Provincial of the Australian Province in 1950.

The papers of the Australian Mission provide a comprehensive history of the Irish Jesuit Mission, concentrating on the years 1865-1931. The Irish Jesuits worked as missionaries, educators, writers, chaplains, theologians, scientists, pastors and directors of retreats, mainly in the urban communities of eastern Australia.

Subjects touched upon include: agreements with Archbishops in establishing Jesuit houses in a particular diocese; reflections on the journey to and from Australia; administration of schools, colleges, universities and Jesuit residences - (St Patrick’s, Melbourne; St Francis Xavier College, Kew, Melbourne; St Aloysius, Dunedin (NZ); St Aloysius College, Sydney ; St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney; St Louis, Claremont, Western Australia; Newman College, University of Melbourne); parishes - (Norwood and Sevenhills in South Australia; Invercargill (NZ); Melbourne; Sydney; Toowong and Indooroopilly in Queensland); financial documents; expansion of the Mission; and correspondence between Father Provincial in Ireland and Jesuits in Australia. By far the greatest number of letters sent to Father Provincial in Ireland was from Fr John Ryan SJ (1849-1922) (Superior of the Mission from 11 February 1901-14 June 1908; 9 April 1913-24 October 1917). Until the creation of the Australian Mission as a Vice-Province, the Irish Provincial was kept informed of every minor detail about the Mission and often decision making in Australia was delayed until approval from Dublin was given.

Although this collection provides a comprehensive history of the Australian Mission, there are some gaps. For example, the collection does not contain any deeds or other legal documents relating to property obtained by the Society of Jesus in Australia and it is presumed that these documents would have been kept by the Superior of the Mission and later the Vice-Provincial of the Vice-Province in Australia, where they remain today.

Superiors of the Irish Jesuit Mission to Australia (1865-1931)
Fr Joseph Lentaigne SJ 1865-1866
Fr Joseph Dalton SJ 1866-1872
Fr Thomas Cahill SJ 1872-1879
Fr Joseph Dalton SJ 1879-2 September 1883
Fr Aloysius Sturzo SJ 2 September 1883-5 April 1890
Fr Patrick Keating SJ 5 April 1890-1 February 1895
Fr Timothy Kenny SJ 1 February 1895-11 February 1901
Fr John Ryan SJ 11 February 1901-14 June 1908
Fr Thomas Brown SJ 14 June 1908-9 April 1913
Fr John Ryan SJ 9 April 1913-24 October 1917
Fr William Lockington SJ 24 October 1917-20 June 1923
Fr Jeremiah Sullivan SJ 20 June 1923-19 March 1931

Vice-Provincials of the Vice-Province of Australian (1931-1950)
Fr John Fahy SJ 19 March 1931-25 August 1939
Fr John Meagher SJ 25 August 1939-1 October 1947
Fr Austin Kelly SJ 1 October 1947-1 November 1950

Irish Vice-Province of the Society of Jesus, 1830-

“Father Willie” (Father Willie Doyle, SJ) as part of the “Irish Messenger Series”

  • IE IJA J/2/99
  • File
  • [1949-1970]; 11 July 1977
  • Part of Irish Jesuits

“Father Willie” (Father Willie Doyle, SJ) as part of the “Irish Messenger Series” published by the Irish Messenger Office. Includes a note from Diarmuid [ ], Fitzpatrick’s Book Shop, 12 Cathedral Street, Upper O’ Connell Street, Dublin to Fr Fergal [McGrath] SJ in which he refers to a reprint of an insert letter by T. Cain, 22 Limetree Crescent, Cockermouth, Cumberland which corrects Fr Doyle’s date of death.

Irish Messenger Office, 1888-

Letters from publishers Browne Nolan Ltd. agreeing to publish his book 'The Reform of the Medieval Irish Church'

  • IE IJA J/10/99
  • File
  • 16 February - 22 March 1949
  • Part of Irish Jesuits

Letters from publishers Browne Nolan Ltd. to Fr Aubrey Gwynn SJ, agreeing to publish his book 'The Reform of the Medieval Irish Church', ‘which, if it will not be a best seller, should certainly enjoy a reasonable sale on publication and a continuing, if limited, demand for many years.’ They are also interested in ‘your short History of the Irish Medieval Church but since Methuens have invited you to write it you may possibly feel some obligation towards them, even though, as you say, you have not yet made a contract.’ Includes summary of book ‘Offered to Browne and Nolan: c.300 pages: to be ready for press in autumn of 1950; to be published in autumn of 1951’ (14 February 1949, 1p.).

Record of the annual novena of grace at St Francis Xavier’s Church, Upper Gardiner Street

Record of the annual novena of grace at St Francis Xavier’s Church, Upper Gardiner Street (1946 - 1961) with copies of petitions and thanksgiving prayers and extracts from letters. Insertions mostly dating from the mid 1950s include copies of community Christmas Cards, a postcard of the Gardiner Street church and residence and the photograph of a crowd entering the Church.

Letter from Leslie Reade, 100 Ivor Court, Gloucester Place, London to Fr Frank Browne SJ

Letter from Leslie Reade, 100 Ivor Court, Gloucester Place, London to Fr Frank Browne SJ thanking him for letting him see your menu and the Cabin Plan. Included is a carbon copy of letter from Leslie Reade to R Deegan, 62 Priory Avenue, Stillorgan, County Dublin, regarding one of Fr Browne’s Titanic photographs and copyright fee.

Reade, Leslie

Fr Milo Byrne SJ

Print out of personal history.

Byrne, Milo, 1671-1746, Jesuit priest

Fr John Byrne SJ

Print out of personal history.

Byrne, John, 1912-1974, Jesuit priest

Fr Felix Byrne SJ

Print out of personal history.

Byrne, Felix, 1659-1720, Jesuit priest

Letters from Longmans Group Ltd. concerning the publication of 'Medieval Religious Houses: Ireland'

  • IE IJA J/10/98
  • File
  • 7 October 1953 - 12 May 1975
  • Part of Irish Jesuits

Letters to Fr Aubrey Gwynn SJ from Longmans Group Ltd. (formerly Longmans Green & Co. Ltd.) concerning the publication of 'Medieval Religious Houses: Ireland' by Fr Gwynn and Neville Hadcock. Includes copy of the agreement between the publishers and Fr Gwynn for the book signed on the company’s behalf (6 November 1953, 4pp).

Establishment of the Vice-Province of Zambia

File of material relating to the establishment of the Vice-Province of Zambia. Includes minutes of meetings of the African Superiors and of the Chikuni Mission, drafts and final versions of agreements and decrees and statements relating to the partition of goods between the Vicariate Apostolic of Lusaka and the Society of Jesus.

Fr John Butler SJ

Print out of personal history.

Butler, John, 1727-1786, Jesuit priest

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