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This collection is named for the donor and creators of the collection, Síghle (1903-1985) and Stiophán (1867-1921) Bairéad. Síghle donated this material to the Library in 1976 in memory of her father Stiophán, first Treasurer of the Gaelic League, and of her brother Ciarán (1905-1976), a collector with the Irish Folklore Commission. The book collection is principally Irish language material and in particular ephemeral material from the early days of the Gaelic revival movements.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.


The Boyle Collection represents a portion of the library of the late Professor Kevin Boyle (1943-2010), who came originally from Newry. He began his career at Queen’s University Belfast where he was deeply engaged in the civil rights movement. In the late 1970s he joined the University of Galway (then UCG) where he co-founded the Irish Centre for Human Rights with Denny Driscoll in 1980. Professor Boyle continued his academic career at the University of Essex. The collection contains books on Irish history and politics as well as law and were presented to the library by Mrs. Joan Boyle, accompanying an extensive archive of Professor Boyle’s papers.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.


The titles in the Cairnes collection formed part of the library of John Elliott Cairnes (1823-1875), political economist, who was Professor of Jurisprudence and Political Economy at Queen's College, Galway (1859-1870). The collection contains works on 19th century economy and society.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.

Cló Iar-Chonnachta

Micheál Ó Conghaile, a well-known and respected writer, founded the company Cló Iar-Chonnachta in 1985 when he was a university student. CIC publishes Irish-language books and Irish traditional music. Since its inception it has published over 300 books and 150 music albums. CIC sees itself primarily as guardian and patron of Irish language and Gaeltacht culture. In 2010 Michéal donated copies of much of the output of the publishing house to date, so that the James Hardiman Library would have comprehensive coverage of its material.

Bunaíodh Cló Iar-Chonnacht (CIC) i 1985, agus ó shin i leith tá os cionn 150 albam ceoil curtha amach acu, agus suas le 300 leabhar. Is mar choimirceoir, mar phatrún agus mar chaomhnóir ar chultúr na Gaeilge agus na Gaeltachta a fheidhmíonn CIC. I 2010 bronnadh an buanaitheor, Micheál Ó Conghaile, cuid mhaith de na foilseacháin ar an leabharlann chun go mbéadh clúdach cuitsitheach againn.


The Davies collection represents a portion of the library of Professor Mansel Davies (1913-1995), former Professor of Chemistry at the University of Wales, scientist and historian. This small collection was presented to the library by his son, Professor Rhodri Ceredig, professor of Immunology at University of Galway. It contains volumes on history, poetry, particularly Welsh poetry, and literature.

De Buitléar

This book collection was received as part of a substantial archival donation by the late Éamon de Buitléar. It comprises of c.600 volumes, many of which relate to his career researching, filming and broadcasting on wildlife in Ireland. The collections also contains some early 20th Irish language titles originally the property of Éamon’s father.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.


This very large collection originally constituted part of the library of Séamus Ó Duilearga (1899-1980), former Professor of Irish Folklore at University College Dublin. It was acquired by the Library in 1981 and contains a fine representation of writings on all aspects of both Irish and European folklore for much of the 20th century. In addition to the book material, there is a significant collection of offprints received by Professor Ó Duilearga from academic colleagues throughout the world.

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The items in the Déon collection have been donated over the past number of years by the French author, Michel Déon (1919-2016), who has resided in County Galway for many years, and has established links with the University during that time. The collection contains modern French writing, including Monsieur Déon's own publications. A significant proportion of this collection may be borrowed.


The Ros Dixon collection comprises almost 700 titles from the library of the late Dr. Ros Dixon, former lecturer in Drama and Theatre Studies at the University of Galway, who sadly passed away at a young age due to illness in 2010. The bulk of the collection reflect Ros’s passion for drama particularly that of Ireland and Russia.


In 2016 the Dominican sisters at the convent of Jesus and Mary, Taylor’s Hill, Galway, donated a substantial library of over 2000 volumes to the University. The material ranges from early 17th century religious works such as a life of St. Teresa of Avila dating from 1611 to volumes used in teaching at the Taylor’s Hill boarding school in the later 19th and early 20th centuries.

Feminist Publishing 

Collected mainly in the last 15 years, this material represents the work of all feminist publishers in Ireland in the last 20 years of the 20th century. It was donated to the Library by Alan Hayes, publisher with Arlen House, and is a significant collection for the study of feminist literature and history in Ireland. Details of titles are available by typing "Feminist Publishing Collection" into the Library Catalogue.


This substantial collection was purchased by the Library in 1976. It contains all material published by and about Isabella Augusta, Lady Gregory (1852-1932). A native of County Galway, she was a major figure in the Irish Literary Revival and the founding of the Abbey Theatre. Many of the works are available in the different editions in which they have appeared. There are also associated works and biographies.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.


The Henry Library is held on deposit from the Church of Ireland diocese of Tuam, Killala and Achonry. The bulk of the collection represents the Library of the Reverend Joseph Henry, D.D (1821-1885). As well as theological and biblical material, it contains 19th century literature and historical publishing as well as an extensive collection of travel writings from the 1850s-1880s. The material in this collection are all included in the Library Catalogue.


This collection of about 3500 volumes was given to the Library in 2000 in memory of Michael Morris, 3rd Baron Killanin (1914-1999), well-known writer, film director/producer and sports administrator. His family wished to highlight the close connections of the Morris family with Galway. Among the subjects represented are 20th century Irish Literature, Irish Art and Archaeology as well as world politics and horse racing. The collection is being processed and details of up to 75% are now available on the Library Catalogue.

King’s Inn

The King’s Inn (School of Law, Dublin) collection was purchased for the Library with the aid of An Taisce (The National Trust for Ireland) in the early 1970s. It includes volumes on historical, classical and natural history, the highlight of the collection being a very early version of the Confessions of St. Augustine.


The Larkin Collection represents a portion of the library of the late Professor Patrick Larkin, who retired as Professor of Education in the University in 1967, and his wife Rita (neé Carlos), also a graduate of the University. It contains books on education, history, literature (including a good collection on the Bronte sisters not previously held by the library) and travel. The books were presented to the library by Professor and Mrs. Larkin’s grandson, Dr. John McKenna in 2008.

Mac Fhinn

The Mac Fhinn Collection represents a portion of the library of an tAthair Eric Mac Fhinn (1895-1987), who served as lecturer in Education through Irish in the University, 1931-1965. In addition he was a life-long publisher in and on the Irish language and contributed to and edited the journal Ar Aghaidh. The collection includes books in several languages including Irish, English, French and German. Volumes on classics, history, education and religion are included as well as several fine facsimiles of early Irish manuscripts. The books were presented to the library in 2012 by the Sisters of Mercy in Loughrea, to whom they had been bequeathed by an tAthair Eric.


The Library is endeavouring to collect the published works of John McGahern, both in English and where they have been translated into other languages. These volumes have been assembled as the McGahern Collection.


This collection of over 100 titles originally formed part of the library of Irish actress and UCG graduate, Siobhán McKenna. They primarily comprise works of 20th century drama, fiction and poetry, from both Ireland and elsewhere.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.


The Morrissey Collection contains significant printed titles relating to the period of the Williamite Wars in Ireland (1689-91) with particular reference to the Battle of Aughrim. It was assembled by Colman Morrissey, the son of Joseph Morrissey, a graduate of UCG. It includes some especially rare items including an annotated copy of a List of Claims printed by the Court of Claims, Chichester House, in 1701 and early biographies of both King William and King James.


The Mulloy collection comprises c.40 volumes formerly owned by Dr. Sheila Mulloy and her husband John. Sheila graduated from UCG in 1943 before studying at the Sorbonne in Paris. She was a noted historian of Franco-Irish relations and many of the books in the collection reflect this interest as well as wider historical topics.


The Murray collection was kindly donated by an alumnus of the University, Professor Ciarán Murray, now professor of English at Chuo University, Japan. It includes rare early 19th century editions of the work of Sydney Owenson (Lady Morgan).

Ní hÉimhigh

An tOllamh Mairéad Ní hÉimhigh or Professor Margaret Heavey, lectured in Latin (later Ancient Classics) from 1931 and was appointed professor of Ancient Classics in 1958. She died in 1980, bequeathing a donation to the University to establish the Athenry Prizes, for students achieving high marks in Classics. She is remembered by the current teaching team in Classics through an annual Memorial lecture. These books are all concerned with Classical studies.

Ó Curraoín 

The Library was fortunate to receive the extensive Ó Curraoín collection, donated by the family of the late Micheál Ó Curraoín, who assembled the collection during many years of travel and scholarship. Micheál’s material is particularly strong in Irish Local Studies publications, of which he was a diligent collector. It is intended that elements of this collection will eventually be housed in Acadamh na hOllscolaíochtaí in Carna. It is possible to browse the titles that have so far been catalogued by searching for “Ó Curraoín Collection” in the library catalogue.

Ringling North 

There is an emphasis on modern fine bindings in this collection which represents some of the personal library of Henry Ringling North, (1909-1993), Vice-President of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. In addition the collection includes some rare editions of Irish 18th and 19th century publishing. This collection is currently being catalogued. Type “Ringling North Collection” into the Search the Library’s Collections box on the Library home page. You can use the filters on the left hand side to refine your search results.


Tim Robinson, author, artist and cartographer, donated his substantial archive to the Library in 2013. The archival material was accompanied by that part of Tim’s library which he used as a reference collection at the time of preparing his books and maps relating to Connemara, Aran and the Burren. In 2017 Tim and his wife Mairéad donated further material to the collection. The book titles can be browsed on the Library Catalogue.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.


This collection, kindly donated by Limerick historian Kieran Sheedy, contains books on the history of the Irish in Australia and material relating to the rebellion of 1798.

There is an archival collection associated with this book collection. Contact Special Collections to learn more.


This is a substantial collection representing some of the library of acclaimed actor, Arthur Shields, donated by his daughter Christine. Notable contents include rare pictorial and pamphlet material on the 1916-1922 period of Irish history.

St. Anthony's

The St. Anthony's Library Collection was acquired by the Library in 1991 when the University purchased St. Anthony's College in Newcastle, Galway from the Franciscan Order. It contains over 20,000 items. Devotional literature and theology are strongly represented in the collection as are Irish and church history. Some of the post-1900 material from this collection is loanable. 


This collection constitutes the library, assembled over a lifetime of scholarship, of the historian T.D. Williams. The focus of the works is on the history of Britain and Europe in the twentieth century. To see titles included in the collection type “Williams Collection” into the Search the Library’s Collections box on the Library home page. You can use the filters on the left hand side to refine your search results.