Identity Statement for Dr James Ryan

  • Reference code: IE UCDA P88
  • Title: Papers of Dr James Ryan (1891–1970)
  • Dates: 1915–22
  • Level of description: Fonds
  • Extent: 3 boxes
  • Context
  • Content and Structure
  • Conditions of Access and Use

Biographical History

Born near Taghmon, County Wexford, the youngest of a political family, he was educated at St Peter’s College, Wexford, Ring College and University College Dublin where he studied medicine. While at College he joined Sinn Féin and the Volunteers, was in charge of the medical unit in the GPO during Easter Week, 1916, and was subsequently interned in Stafford and Frongoch. Elected Sinn Féin MP for Wexford in 1918, he was interned on Spike Island during the War of Independence, opposed the Treaty and was interned in the Curragh. He was a founder member of Fianna Fáil and served in every Fianna Fáil government from 1932 until his retirement in 1965, as Minister for Agriculture, 1932–47, Minister for Health and Social Welfare, 1947–48 and 1951–54, and Minister for Finance, 1957–65.

Archival History

This collection was deposited in UCD Archives on 2 August 1989 by Ryan's daughter, Nuala Colgan, and his sons, Eoin and Seamus.

Scope and Content

Letters received while interned after Easter Week, from internees in other jails, from family and friends and letters received after his own release from those still in prison. Administrative and organisational material relating to Sinn Féin and Dáil Éireann (1919–22). Material relating to the Civil War including notes written by Ryan while in the Four Courts Garrison. Collection of posters.

  • Access: Available by appointment to holders of a UCD Archives reader's ticket. Produced for consultation in original format. Original material will be retrieved at 11am and 2pm only.
  • Language: English
  • Finding aid: Descriptive catalogue
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