In addition to the artwork on display in the museum, Quinnipiac University houses a significant collection of printed materials relating to the starvation that occurred throughout Ireland from 1845–52 and the forced emigration during these years and beyond. This collection, available in the Lender Family Special Collection Room at the University’s Arnold Bernhard Library on the Mount Carmel Campus, includes volumes on the Famine period and others focusing on peripheral issues that helped shape the events surrounding the tragedy.
The room was dedicated on September 21, 2000, in honor of Murray Lender, Marvin Lender and members of the Lender Family, whose generosity and dedication to promoting education and public awareness about The Great Hunger made the collection possible.
Some of the volumes housed in the Lender Room are extremely rare and were written at or close to the time of the Great Hunger. Others include tragic and moving accounts and personal recollections taken from letters and diaries of the period. Present-day authorities and scholars, historical novels, essays and personal reflections contribute to the record. Quinnipiac University continues to build on this valuable resource for scholarly research and for educating people on the reality and implications of this tragic period in human history.
The British Parliamentary Papers relating to Ireland from 1801–93 is a highlight of this collection. Consisting of some 4,500 individual items, including bound volumes, individual reports and administrative files, these official papers document various aspects of life in Ireland during the 19th century: the people, their land (or lack of it), education, rebellions, famines and religion. The collection also features the rare four-volume, The Bogs of Ireland, 1812-19, which include 68 magnificent maps of Irish bogs, a copy of the six-volume set on the Disturbances in Ireland published in 1825, and a complete set in 12 volumes of The Parnell Commission.
A treasure trove of fascinating material, the collection of British Parliamentary Papers also includes correspondence on government relief measures—the Commissariat and Board of Public Works series; the correspondence on the state of the unions and workhouses; the reports of relief commissioners, the Board of Health report and a number of significant miscellaneous documents. Government policy, official attitudes and famine conditions emerge in graphic detail.
To make an appointment to view the collection in the Lender Family Special Collection Room, please visit: http://www.thegreathunger.org/MoreInformation/ContactUs.asp.