Welcome to Irish Photo Archive where Irish historical images and documents have been made available for you to purchase online.

We sell historical, archived images from every day Irish life as well as significant events in the country’s history.

From an archive of over 3.5 million images you can see the many significant characters that visited Ireland over the years. Have a look and enjoy!

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Santa Claus

The day after Christmas is traditionally one longed for by sports lovers, and for race goers Leopardstown will be offering an event filled calendar beginning on Boxing Day. Hospitality and restaurant facilities are available.  

Irish racing fans are all too aware that Ireland has produced no small number of winners over the years.

Santa Claus retuning home after winning the 1964 Epsom Derby

Purchase Prints @ Irish Photo Archive

Monday, 24 December 2012

Christmas Eve

As the children are filling the family home with excitement one parent could do worse than take them off down to watch the Christmas lights while the other gets the Santa presents ready. If you don't have it done by now Christmas Eve is the last opportunity you will have.

Christmas lights in O'Connell Street in 1967

Purchase Prints @ Irish Photo Archive

Friday, 21 December 2012

Time Called

This week saw laughter brought to the funeral of Páidi Ó Sé in his native Kerry, as mourners gathered to celebrate his life as much as mourn his passing. Ó Sé, a legend in the world of Kerry Football was laid to rest at Reilig Chaitliona, Ventra after his funeral mass.

Throughout Ó Sé's illustrious career his considerable prowess both on the off the field, first as a player and then as manager, brought considerable success to the Kerry team. Many friends and mourners from all walks of life gathered to hear Munster GAA Chairman, Sean Walsh giving the graveside oration.

Páidi Ó Sé died at his home last weekend aged 57.

The 1978 All Ireland Championship winning side which fielded Páidi Ó Sé

Purchase Prints @ Irish Photo Archive

Thursday, 20 December 2012

The women of Ireland

‘A victory for the women of Ireland’ is how Health Minister James O’Reilly described the decision by the government to introduce a combination of  legislation and regulation so as to give effect to the 1992 X Case judgment.

The speed with which the cabinet have moved in this thorny area has been prompted by public concern over the handling of the pregnancy of Savita Halappanavar who died last month in a Galway Hospital.

Ireland has a long and contentious history regarding access to pregnancy termination. In earlier years the pro-life bodies constituted a powerful lobbying group.

Mother Teresa speaking at a meeting of the Society For The Protection of Unborn Children in 1980

In recent years that influence seems to have waned as it has come under sustained challenge from pro choice groups.

Purchase Prints @ Irish Photo Archive

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

On this day 38 years ago

Cearbhall O'Dalaigh was sworn in as the fifth President of the Irish Republic.

President O'Dalaigh center with Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave left.
Following the sudden death of President Erskine Childers, Mr Cearbhall O'Dalaigh was nominated by The Fianna Fail party as its candidate to replace him.

O'Dalaigh was a barrister by profession who had served as Chief Justice and President of the Supreme Court from 1961- 1973. The Fine Gael /Labour coalition government did not oppose the nomination and Mr O'Dalaigh was elected unopposed on a joint party agreement.

President O' Dalaigh shakes hands with Chief Justice O'Higgins after being sworn in.

He resigned in controversial circumstances in October 1976 after the Minister for Defence publicly criticised his action in referring an emergency powers bill to the Supreme Court to test its constitutionality.

An elderly Eamon DeValera pictured at the inauguration.

Purchase prints at Irish Photo Archive

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Irish Aviation

A preliminary investigation into last month’s plane crash near Birr airfield, Co Offaly, has found that the plane had no technical defects. The investigation will now focus on the amount of fuel the plane was carrying at the moment of impact.

Two men lost their lives in the air traffic accident. Flying instructor Niall Doherty from Roscrea and trainee pilot Damien Deegan from Crinkle were both 31.

Below are some images from Ireland's aviation history.

Captain Darby Kennedy - Weston Aerodrome, Leixlip, Co. Kildare.

A Westland Widgeon Helicopter, arrives at Dublin Airport on its way to the Air Display at Weston, Leixlip, Co. Kildare.

A de Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth pictured on the ground readying for takeoff .

The black and white pictures show classic aircraft at the air show at Weston Aerodrome, Ireland.  The Westland Widgeon helicopter (pictured middle) was built in the 1950s but was never commercially successful and only fourteen were built.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Digitizing the Archive

A highly readable blog post by Sarah Jacobs  details the work of Lensmen photographic agency, much of which involves digitizing a substantial archive containing over two million images.

Jacobs asks:

When you’ve acquired an historic archive with over 2 million images that includes The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, and JFK, where do you begin when it comes to digitizing, securing, uploading, distributing and marketing the work?

With the help of Susan Kennedy and Sean Walsh, owners of this remarkable archive, Sarah Jacobs guides her reader through the history and current work of the enterprise.

Susan Kennedy and Sean Walsh 

Amongst recent highpoints in the company’s evolution was what Susan Kennedy described as ‘a highly successful red carpet film première of Charlie is my darling.’ Shortly after this event Taoiseach Enda Kenny launched the Lensmen book, The 1950s: Ireland in Pictures.

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Anti-Salmon Farm Protests

A protest is taking place today at at the Cork office of the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development. it is being organised by a number of anti-fish farm groups who plan on marching to Minister Simon Coveney’s Carrigaline constituency office to voice their opposition to government policy on fish farming.

Ireland has a reputation for being home to some of the best fishing rivers in Europe, attracting many anglers from foreign climes.

1950s image of angler plying his trade along one of Ireland's many rivers

Purchase prints at Irish Photo Archive

Friday, 14 December 2012

New French Diaspora

France’s Prime Minister has expressed his displeasure at the country’s 'greedy rich' who have flocked to foreign climes in a bid to evade taxation laws in their own country. Jean-Marc Ayrault has lambasted his wealthy fellow nationals for their avarice. 

Those who are seeking exile abroad are not those who are scared of becoming poor … (but) … because they want to get even richer. We cannot fight poverty if those with the most, and sometimes with a lot, do not show solidarity and a bit of generosity. 

In 1968 French society was rocked to the core when students and others took to a more insurrectionary form of politics against the system of government overseen by President Charles De Gaulle.

Charles de Gaulle and President de Valera seated on a couch talking in Áras An Uachtarain 

In the summer of 1969, General Charles De Gaulle, the retired President of France visited Ireland. Accompanying De Gaulle was his wife Yvonne and his aide de camp Admiral Francois Flohic.
He was descended from the Irish clan of McCartan, on his mother’s side, De Gaulle's great-grandmother was Marie Angelique McCartan and he had a keen interest in Irish history.

He fulfilled a lifetime ambition to visit Ireland in 1969.

Former President De Gaulle plants a tree in the grounds of Áras an Uachtarain
General Charles de Gaulle with President Eamon De Valera at Áras an Uachtarain

Purchase prints at Irish Photo Archive

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Dublin Buses

The bus service in Dublin has made the news in recent years for a number of tragic reasons.

Serious incidents involving buses in which members of the public have lost their lives have forced Dublin buses centre stage in terms of news worthiness.

It has been not only traumatic for those who have been the victims of accidents and their families as well as onlookers, but also for the drivers of the vehicles concerned. A long time seems to have passed since the men and women who provide such a valuable public service made the news with a smile.

First CIE Dublin woman bus driver back in 1980

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

No Order in the House

Yesterday Dail Eireann hosted a vituperative exchange between Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Louth TD Gerry Adams. At one point the speaker, Ceann Comhairle Sean Barrett suspended the house for ten minutes in a bid to restore order. 

Earlier this year Enda Kenny launched the Lensmen book 1950s Ireland in Pictures

Taoiseach Enda Kenny with Lensmen team past and present at book launch 

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Michael Hughes pictured with the chunk of gold he discovered in Co. Monaghan, Ireland on 01/02/1957

Monaghan Farmer Michael Hughes (far right) watches on as the gold he discovered is inspected.
The pictures were featured in the Sunday Express Newspaper in 1957.

Although the grade of the gold in Co Monaghan is relatively low by world standards, the sheer size of the find and the surging prices of gold mean it could still be hugely profitable.
The biggest gold mine in Britain and Ireland was discovered in 2009 at Clontibret, Co Monaghan close to the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Archive Celebrities: Princess Grace Kelly

Grace Patricia Kelly, born November 12th 1929, became an actress and then later married Rainier III, Prince of Monaco consequentially becoming Princess consort of Monaco or Her Serene Highness The Princess of Monaco. 

Purchase Prints at Irish Photo Archive

Princess Grace and Prince Rainier III visited Dublin several times throughout their monarchy. In 1961 she visited Our Lady’s Hospital, Crumlin where she chatted with patients.
Available for purchase at
The Oscar-winning actress and mother of three died in 1982 when she suffered a stroke. She was well loved and greatly missed.

Available for purchase at

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Bye bye, Ireland!

Today was our last day here at Lensmen. In this 4 weeks we learned much about the life in a company and photography. We enjoyed our Placement here and of course the friendly people!! In this 4 weeks John learned much about HTML5, CSS3, CMS, Social Media Stuff and Susi worked with a lot of photos from the archive and designed some rolling stones posters for the Irish Photo Archive.

We really enjoyed the stay here in Ireland and we're happy to met this company, the nice people and the culture of Ireland.

We're looking forward to went back to Germany!

Susi Schnabel, Susan Kennedy and John Zimmer.

Auf Wiedersehen!

Black and white images from 1950's Ireland in Pictures

Images Available for Purchase at Irish Photo Archive

Lensmen Photographic Archives launch of The 1950s Ireland in Pictures

Archive Celebrities: Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali was born January 17th 1942 in Louisville Kentucky. He is an American former professional boxer, philanthropist and social activist and is currently 70 years of age.

Image Available for Purchase at Irish Photo Archive
Muhammad Ali visited Ireland in July of 1972 where he fought against Al Blue Lewis at Croke Park.

Image Available for Purchase at Irish Photo Archive
Before coming to Ireland, Muhammad Ali experienced great success in his boxing career. In 1959 he became a Golden Gloves champion and only a year later he became an Olympic gold medalist.

Image Available for Purchase at Irish Photo Archive

Ali won all of his bouts in the 1960s, the majority of them by knockout.

All the historic images of Muhammad Ali you see above (excepting the video) are from The Irish Photo Archive and are part of a larger collection of historic Irish images. 


Lensmen Photographic Archive launch of the 1950s Ireland in Pictures

Milo O'Shea

Milo O Shea

Milo O'Shea

Born in Dublin in 1926 he joined the Dublin Abbey Players at the age of 19. However, it would be a decade later before Milo O Shea first gained public acclaim and recognition when he began a stage career under the tutelage of Harry Dillon who ran the 37 Theatre Club in Dublin's Lower O'Connell Street. 

In the UK he came to prominence courtesy of his role in the BBC sitcom Me Mammy which ran from 1968 to 1971.

He also made it on the big screen through films such as the 1967 version of Ulysses.

In 1973 He played Inspector Boot in the 1973 horror movie Theatre of Blood.

His career brought him to the US where he acted alongside Paul Newman in The Verdict. Famed for his imposing eyebrows he He also played the character of Chief Justice Roy Ashland in the US series The West Wing.

Milo O'Shea's acting career has lasted eight decades. 

Irish Photo Archives launch of the 1950s Ireland in Pictures

Irish Photo Archives launch of the 1950s Ireland in Pictures

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Lensmen Photo Archive Holiday Coupon

Greetings everybody!

Our historic archive, filled with pictures of Irish landscapes, Irish people, and celebrities in Ireland is gearing up for the holidays!

Irish Photo Archive
We understand that Christmas can be a stressful time, choosing presents for people can be extremely difficult! But why not, this season, give them a little piece of Ireland? A print from the Irish Photo Archive is not simply a piece of art but a piece of history. Because each photograph was taken by professional photographers from Dublin, each picture is an honest look into what Ireland was like these past few decades.

There were protests
Irish Photo Archive

Irish Photo Archive
Celebrity Visits
Irish Photo Archive
and much more. Please feel free to visit our website to browse the rest of our 2.6 million photographs! In the spirit of the holidays we would like to offer our readers a coupon for 25 euro to be spent on any prints in our archive! The coupon code is: 1950N62012

Happy Holidays!


Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Lensmen Photo Archive Links and News

The Irish Photo Archive is proud to announce our partnership with Abkco and our involvement in the “Charlie is My Darling, Ireland-1965” film. 14 of our photographs of The Rolling Stones have been used in the production of the film as well as in the posters and other advertising. Our involvement in the film has been discussed on such prominent local news sources such as Dublin People, ITV News, the Irish Examiner, the IrishCentral, the Fingal-Independent, The Independent, RTE 6 O'Clock News, MediaStreet, Talkback radio, Venture, Business World, Broadsheet, and WorldIrish to name a few!
Irish Photo Archive
Internationally we’ve been in articles in the New York Times, the Rolling Stones Magazine, Artinfo, Filmlinc, Columbia Daily Tribune, MaxTV, and Musicdirect!
We have collaborated with Obrien Press to create our new photographic book-“The 1950’s Ireland in Pictures” which can be purchased at the Book Despository. The book launch was November 6th and it was a great success, thanks to all that came! 
Irish Photo Archive
 If you would like to see more pictures you may browse the Irish Photo Archive website or visit our You Tube channel.
Without culturally historic websites such as ourselves, Irish Photo Archive, as well as The Irish Archives, British GENES, and Heritagecouncil our past and our culture would be lost. We are very grateful to our photographic and informational websites and we love to be able to share them with you.
You can find more information on The Irish Photo Archive on Irelandwebinfo or if you are interested in joining our team please visit Digital Marketing Jobs.

Archive Celebrities: Dana Rosemary Scallon

Dana Rosemary Scallon was an Irish songstress from the 70's and then later in her life, a politician. She won the Eurovision competition in 1970 with the song "All Kinds of Everything"

She returned to Ireland triumphant-the first Irish contender to win the competition at only 18 years old.
Irish Photo Archive
In 1997 she decided to run for President, a move that may have been inspired by her meeting with President Eamon DeValera in March of 1970.

Irish Photo Archive
Dana went on after her Eurovision success to become one of the best selling Catholic and commercial artists.
Irish Photo Archive

Her devotion to the Catholic religion was prevalent in much of her music, one example being her tribute to Pope John Paul II "Totus Tuus".

Although Dana's life became plagued with scandal after fame and attempts to become President, she will always remain Ireland's sweetheart.

Irish Photo Archive

Monday, 12 November 2012

Archive Celebrities: Brendan Behan

Breandán Ó Beacháin was a famous Irish poet, short story, novelist and playwright. He wrote in both Irish and English and is considered by the United States Library of Congress to be one of the most important literary figures of the 20th century.
Born in Dublin on the 9th of February 1923 Brendan Behan was an alcoholic by age 8. By age 14 he was a member of Fianna Eireann, the youth organisation of the tthe IRA (Irish Republican Army). Brendan Behan was trained in explosives and consequentially arrested upon landing in Liverpool in February 1940. He then spent two years in Borstal detention.

His second bout in prison was brought on when he shot at a detective during an IRA parade. This resulted in a fourteen year sentence in Mountjoy prison. Brendan made good use of the time he spent in jail, studying the Irish language and literature. His experiences in Borstal led to the creation of The Bell which was published by Sean O Faolain while Behan was in Mountjoy. 

Behan would serve more prison sentences after Mountjoy but none were so lengthy. After his release in 1946 Brendan turned to painting and writing verse in Irish.
Irish Photo Archive

Behan's most notable works include The Quare Fellow, The Hostage, Borstal Boy, and After the Wake. 

Diabetes and years of alcohol abuse contributed to Brendan Behan's untimely death in 1964. 

Irish Photo Archive
An IRA guard escorted his coffin and his funeral was said to be the biggest since those of Michael Collins or Charles Stewart Parnell.