Discover 19th Century Childhood through Loreto Boarding Schools
‘To be taught everything necessary …..’; these were the instructions of the parents of Ellen Hart, 28 Watling Street, Dublin, when she enrolled as a boarding pupil in Loreto convent Navan in 1838.
What curriculum included ‘everything necessary’? What was Ellen’s experience of boarding school in 1838? Explore the world of 19th century childhood through a unique collection of boarding school records and memorabilia, held in IBVM (Loreto), Institute & Irish Province Archives.
Discover a world of childhood illnesses and remedies exemplified in the letter of M. Frances Teresa Ball IBVM to Mrs Irwin, Rathmile House, Tulsk, Co. Roscommon, on New Year’s Eve 1829, describing her daughter Margaret’s recovery from scarlet fever. Look out for the prescription for wine! Explore school dress codes in an age before school uniforms, captured in the Loreto Kilkenny class photograph of 1897; lace collars and cuffs proudly on display vie with prominent ‘Children of Mary’ medals for those in senior classes with unblemished records! Uncover the transition from standard classrooms to laboratories and kitchens as students began to study science and home economics, conduct experiments, study catering and dressmaking skills. Rediscover 19th entertainments through hand painted lantern slides with moving parts, providing entertainment in a world before radio, television or Wi Fi. View the world through the eyes of a young woman captured in her diary, jottings and autograph books such as this from Loreto Wexford.
Discover our archival collections at IBVM (Loreto) Archives, 55 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2; https://loreto.ie/history/loreto-archives/, or our online catalogues through the Irish Archives Resource (search for ‘Loreto’ on the www.iar.ie website).
IBVM (Loreto) Archives, 55 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2
+353 1 662 0158