January 2017 see’s the beginning of a year of celebrations marking 200 years of the Licensed Vintners Association, the trade body representing Dublin pubs. At 200, it’s the oldest trade association in the country.
Towards the end of last year, the LVA allowed us in to see their archive, which dates back to it’s foundation. There’s minutes of every meeting from the present day, all the way back to 1817. We spent a few hours picking through some items of interest that we’re going to share on the website over the next while. We hope to pay another visit soon to gather some more info
To kick us off, here’s the minutes of one of the first meetings of the LVA following the Easter rising of 1916. Most of the minutes from this era are hand written and so, very difficult to read for those not used to documents of this type. There is, however, a typed list of those pubs that were completely and partially demolished during the rising.
Licensed Houses Totally Destroyed:
P.G. Nagle, 25 North Earl Street (Now Madigan’s Pub)
Mrs. Sheridan, 26 North Earl Street
Phillip Meagher, 4 North Earl Street
John Egan, The Oval, Middle Abbey Street (Still The Oval today)
Thomas Smyth, Middle Abbey Street
James Farrell, 11 Marlborough Street
Mrs. Mooney, Eden Quay
P. McGreevey, Eden Quay
Ed. Moore, 14 Eden Quay
John Davin, Lower Abbey Street
John Davin, Sackville Place
Mrs. Egan, Sackville Place
J.G. Mooney and Co., Lower Abbey Street
M. Tierney, Princes Stores, Princes Street
T. Murphy, Henry Street
James Humphreys, 1 and 2 Moore Street
Hugh Kavanagh, Usher’s Quay
Licensed Premises seriously damaged as far as known:
E. O’Neill, Eden Quay
Miss Foley, Lower Abbey Street
Francis Fee, Moore Street
P.G. Nagle, Cathedral Street
What is interesting about this list is that it is concerned chiefly with those pubs that were located around the GPO and the scenes of the most intense fighting. It’s well known that other pubs such as The Tap and The Swan were damaged in the fighting, but they are omitted from this list. The Swan have an original document with a claim for damages done to the building during the Rising. Perhaps it was simply too soon after the fighting to get a completely accurate assessment of the damage done. The meeting took place on the 9th of May, around 10 days after the fighting ended.
The archives provide a fantastic record for the names and proprietors of pubs during different eras. It’s not an exhaustive list, but if you were to go through all the records you’d have a very good record of the names of pubs going back 200 years. Indeed, in some of the minutes they mention paying an annual fee to Thoms Directory, which was the yellow pages of its day. In this you would find a year by year listing of the names of the more well established pubs, specifically those that were members of the LVA.
We’ll be back with more historical tidbits and pages from the archive soon.