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News Release

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Partnership Will Help Trace Irish Presence in Canada

Ottawa, March 13, 2006--A ground-breaking international cultural agreement was celebrated today at Library and Archives Canada during a ceremony to mark the official signing in Canada of the Documentary Heritage Research Partnership between the National Archives of Ireland and Library and Archives Canada.

His Excellency Martin Burke, Ambassador of Ireland, Ian. E. Wilson, Librarian and Archivist of Canada and Catriona Crowe, a representative from the National Archives of Ireland, signed the document in the presence of dignitaries and members of genealogical societies.

His Excellency Martin Burke, Ambassador of Ireland, Ian. E. Wilson, Librarian and Archivist of Canada and Catriona Crowe, a representative from the National Archives of Ireland, signed the document in the presence of dignitaries and members of genealogical societies.

"Canada and Ireland share a rich cultural heritage that has spanned over three centuries. Canada had become a refuge of hope and prosperity, and the Irish people, in return, provided the raw talent required to build a new nation," noted Ian E. Wilson. "This reciprocity is alive and well today and the current census project is just one example of shared friendship, beliefs and know-how."

The expertise of Library and Archives Canada staff, who have already successfully digitized and partially indexed the Canadian census returns for 1901, 1906 and 1911, when combined with the archival and research material of the National Archives of Ireland, will result in an outstanding research tool.

During the ceremony, Library and Archives Canada also launched a new virtual exhibition of Irish-Canadian documentary heritage entitled ARCHIVED - The Shamrock and the Maple Leaf. The timing is especially significant as the project coincides with the 160th anniversary of the Great Famine, one of the greatest periods of Irish immigration. With a particular interest in the themes of community and the culture of the Irish in Canada, the exhibition will look at both private and public records and will showcase not only textual documents, but also art, cartography, photography, sound and other media www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/ireland.

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Information:
Pauline M. Portelance
Media Relations Officer, Library and Archives Canada
Telephone: 613-996-6128;
Email: media@bac-lac.gc.ca


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