About «Derry in Old Photographs »
This collection of photographs is a chronicle of social life in Derry from 1890s to the modern day. The main emphasis is on the period 1940 to 1980. The book recalls the town's commercial, sporting and artistic life with nostalgia and affection. The famous walled plantation town occupies the site of a sixth-century Columban monastery. A town grew up around the monastery and by the 13th century Derry was a diocesan centre. But its modern history dates from the 17th century. Its history echoes that of Ulster in general. The Protestant plantation town withstood the famous Jacobite siege of 1689 - thereafter it stood as a symbol of Protestant defiance while gradually attracting a Catholic population to areas outside the walls like the Bogside. history - that which tended to unite rather than divide - is less often celebrated. That is what this book does, in pictures. The earliest image dates from 1872, but most of the material covers the years from the 1930s to the 1960s. These glimpses of the city's past and of the people who made it embrace commercical life, sport, music (for which the city is justly famous) and the other aspects of the ordinary daily round. It also records the dreadful poverty of old, as well as the embittered politics. Art Byrne and Sean McMahon have assembled a wide selection of images, all of them drawn from private sources and most of them never seen before in print.