As part of the unique relationship between UCD and the Irish Franciscans, UCD Archives curates many elements of the Franciscan manuscript patrimony. This process began with the transfer of the immensely significant collections of non-Franciscan private paper collections in 1997, most importantly the papers of Eamon de Valera, but including papers of his private secretary Kathleen O’Connell and of other important figures of twentieth century Irish history such as Seán MacEoin and George Gavan Duffy.
The establishment of the Micheál Ó Cléirigh Institute for the Study of Irish History and Civilization in 2000 as the major component of the UCD-OFM Partnership, initiated the transfer to UCD Archives from the Franciscan Library Killiney of the major series of medieval and early modern manuscripts. Under the terms of the Partnership agreement, the manuscripts remain in the ownership of the Irish Franciscans while their curatorship is transferred to UCD Archives under the general supervision of the UCD-OFM Partnership Management Committee. The collection is the focus of an extensive programme of conservation, cataloguing and digitization.
Four series of manuscripts have been wholly or partially transferred to date.