The subject matter of interviews conducted by the Urban Folklore Project collectors ranged from folk belief and custom, local legends and songs, trades and crafts, children’s lore, and a range of other social and cultural matters. Not surprisingly, oral history was identified as a subject deserving of particular attention. This includes the events of Easter 1916 and the turbulent period leading to independence and the civil war, World War I and the ‘Spanish’ influenza pandemic of 1918-19, events still fresh in the memory of people in their seventies and older. As the recordings demonstrate, Dublin people were enthusiastic about sharing these memories.
The testimonies presented here are those of a cross-section of Dublin opinion in relation to the Easter Rising, ranging from combatants and avowed supporters of the rebellion to those less disposed (or opposed) to the actions of the Volunteers. They also record the experiences and responses of neutral Dublin people whose lives were profoundly affected by the events.