Congrats to everyone at the National Library of Ireland on the debut of your new blog.
The first post was written by by Fiona Ross, the Director of the NLI.
The National Library of Ireland was established in 1877 and the doors of our magnificent building on Kildare Street were first opened to the public 121 years ago this coming August. One of the NLI Trustees at that time, Dr. Edward Dowden (1843-1913), made a wonderful speech that articulates in a way I could never do the central role of a National Library in society.
121 years later our job is to underpin this central role in society for our National Library. Our place has been lost to some extent for various reasons, including a century of under-funding and of course, the proliferation of other sources of information and knowledge. Our definition of society has also changed and has moved far beyond those members of Dublin society who could visit our reading rooms in 1890, to now encompass a global society who we hope can visit us in our Digital Library at any time from anywhere.