EPIC Launches Campaign To Collect Emigrant Stories
Irish emigration museum EPIC is looking for stories from people who have lived overseas and returned to Ireland, as well as those with emigrant family members or ancestors.
As part of a Europe-wide project, the interactive museum in Dublin’s docklands is inviting people to come along on the weekend of May 26 and 27 to share their stories of migration.
People are encouraged to bring along one or more objects - such as letters, postcards, photographs, tickets, diaries, artworks, items of clothing, recipes, books, footage, mementos, badges, or songs - that are part of their own or their family’s migration story.
Deputy museum director at EPIC Jessica Traynor explained, “The Irish are a nation of emigrants, our history and identity has long been shaped by the comings and goings of people. We all know someone who has moved to the UK, US, Australia, Canada or further afield. But emigration is no longer the one-way journey it was in the past, and many of us have lived overseas and returned. As a digital museum, we want to preserve these stories for future generations.”
EPIC’s Story Collecting Weekend will take place from 10am-5pm on Saturday May 26 and Sunday May 27. The stories will then become part of the online Europeana Migration Collection, as well as featuring on EPIC’s website. Europeana Collections is Europe’s digital library, museum, gallery and archive. The project aims to show how the flow of people and ideas adds to the richness of culture.
Traynor said, “We are encouraging young and old to share their story with us. On the day, we will listen to your story and photograph your objects so you can take them home again. What you bring just needs to have special meaning or memories attached to it, it doesn’t need to be worth a lot.”
Two further Story Collecting Weekends will take place at EPIC from August 18-19, with the focus will be on new Irish communities, and from November 24-25, when stories of women migrants will be collected.
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