Skip to main content

UCC Library now Re-opened.

Both Boole and Brookfield BHSL Libraries have re-opened with the safety of Library users and staff as our chief guiding principle.

Please see our policies and important changes regarding re-opening here

Update from our Director of Library Services, Colette McKenna regarding Library Services During COVID Level 5 - Here

Special Collections: Collections

Special Collections is home to manuscripts, older printed books and unique & distinct collections.

Types of Special Collections

Special Collections holds the following types of collections:

  • Manuscripts: Gaelic Irish, English and other languages
  • Maps: estate maps, ordnance survey, city plans
  • Older Printed Books: books from 1476 - 1850 covering subjects such as theology, sciences and history.
  • Newspapers: available on microfilm and in bound volumes.
  • Prints: Topographical Prints
  • Named Collections: collections donated by individuals
  • Collections on a theme: Munster Printing, Transmissions and Transformations of the Ancient World, Humour
  • Collections from Printing Presses: Attic Press, Cork University Press, Cuala Press, Dolmen Press, Three Candles Press
  • Theses: Masters theses to 2013; PhD theses

Check with Special Collections staff for the finding aid for manuscripts on microfilm and the finding aid for paper manuscripts.

Selected Gaelic Irish manuscripts are available on Irish Script on Screen.These include Cín Lae Uí Mhealláin which is an account of the Irish Confederate Wars (1641 – 1647) written by Tarlach Ó Mealláin, OFM.

View the list of newspaper holdings.

Facts About Special Collections

  • Date range of collections: 15th century – present day 
  • Oldest book: Bruni’s Historia del Popolo Fiorentino (1476)
  • Oldest newspaper on microfilm: Freeman’s Journal (1763)
  • Oldest printed newspaper : Cork Evening PostCork Hibernian ChronicleCorke Journal (1769)

Opening Hours

As per Irish Government direction from midnight 21 October 2020 for 6 weeks all counties are placed on Level 5 under the Plan for Living with COVID-19. The advice is: Stay at home with certain exceptions. Please note this time frame may be extended. 

Previous appointment services in Special Collections and Archives are suspended during Level 5.

We are offering the following as alternate means of access to Special Collections & Archives:

  • Scan & Deliver for Special Collections' material including items in the Reference Reading Room, Microform and items that show Special Collections by Request / Special Collections by Appointment on the library catalogue.
  • Reprographic requests for manuscripts & archival material via specialcollectionsarchives@ucc.ie

Every effort will be made to fulfil scan & deliver / reprographic types of requests, but this may not always be possible due to availability, copyright restrictions, size and condition of materials.

If you have any collection queries or other queries please email: specialcollectionsarchives@ucc.ie

In order to facilitate research queries, a virtual appointment service for Special Collections and Archives will shortly be established and details will be forthcoming.