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Library and Research Enquiries

As well as conducting primary research on the museum’s collection, Lisburn, and the Irish linen industry, the museum offers a dedicated research service through its Research Officer, Dr Ciaran Toal. If you have a question or query, or are interested in the museum and its history then get in contact. There is no charge for the service.

What resources do we offer?

The Museum’s Research Library contains a range of resources relating to:

(1)   Textiles and art, especially in relation to linen.
Irish history, particularly the history of Ulster, Lisburn and the Lagan Valley

These resources include:

  • Some 2000 books and approximately 20 journal runs;
  • A collection of  19th and 20th-century Ordnance Survey maps for the district;
  • Original copies of  the two local newspapers, Lisburn Herald and Lisburn Standard from the 1890s until the 1950s;
  • Microfilm copies of the 1901 census schedules for Lisburn and the surrounding district;
  • A collection of audio and video tapes relating to the Museum’s areas of interest.

If you want to access or discuss these materials then please contact the museum’s Research Officer.

Accessing LIRA Special Collection
The library collection of the former Linen Industrial Research Association (LIRA), which closed in 1993, is held by the museum.  LIRA was originally founded in 1919 as the Linen Industry Research Association and the library collection reflects its research work into a range of aspects of flax and linen production.  The Library comprises over six thousand books, journals and research reports.  The majority of the material was published between 1900 – 1970; there are also some rare books, pamphlets and journals dating from the 18th century.  Access to both facilities is by appointment in advance, during weekdays, 9.30am – 4pm.

There are no lending facilities. A photocopying service is possible, subject to the decision of the staff officer in charge.  There is no charge for use of the study facilities; however, photocopying is chargeable.  General enquiries may be made by letter, telephone or email, by those unable to visit the Museum in person.

Ongoing collecting
The Museum continues to add to its library holdings through donations and purchases of relevant material. If you think you have such material, please contact us by telephone or by email to arrange for an appointment for further details please contact us here.

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