The GSI is a recognised repository of the National Archives and has a statutory responsibility for the records of the organisation as a part of government. In practice, there are specific collections of more historical or important records that are separated in an Archive Room, that is protected from fire and environmentally controlled to enhance the long term preservation of those records. Although the majority of these are catalogued, current work in the IGH Programme along with the Cartography Programme, aims to complete the cataloguing of all such records and to try and make information about them more accessible for users.
We regret that the Archives are currently unavailable due to ongoing re-organisation.
Amongst the extant records are many fascinating items which record the day to day operation of the GSI in its earlier years. Letter books and Guard Books of all incoming and outgoing correspondence are particularly interesting, and they record both the mundane and the exceptional events. Many items are manuscript or notes, drafts, annotated proofs and unpublished material. There is no significant indexing for much of the material so research may require examination of many items.
The Portlock Collection
Joseph Ellison Portlock was in charge of the Ordnance Survey of Ireland, at the time of a military-run first attempt at official geological mapping. This took place in parts of counties Derry, Fermanagh, Tyrone and adjoining areas. The geological work of the Ordnance Survey of Ireland was devolved to the newly established civilian Geological Survey of Ireland in 1845. Whilst items from the earlier work are now scattered amongst several institutions, the GSI has some important material including proofs and plates from the Memoirs arising out of Portlock's work. Furthermore, GSI purchased Portlock's library collection from his widow, adding to the range of pioneering and fundamental geological texts that now form part of the Survey's and the country's heritage.
The GSI was formed in a golden age of geology when fundamental theories and understanding of geological processes, stratigraphy, palaeontology and principles were being developed. Many of the classic works from that time are now very rare and hard to find for research purposes. GSI's Archives include several hundred titles comprising these early works that are still relevant and interesting today. It is intended to make the reference details available as a form of catalogue on the GSI's Document Management System for personal visitors to GSI's Customer Centre.
The IGH Programme holds a broad range of data pertinent to the investigation, understanding and protection of Ireland's geological heritage. There are no databases directly accessible to the public, however, some information is available under County Geological Sites Audits , and we do try to assist those with questions or queries.
The Du Noyer Collection
George Victor Du Noyer is one of Ireland's most famed geologists. He not only mapped the counties of Ireland, but recorded the landscape in a series of watercolours.
For information on the Du Noyer Collection please click here.
GSI also has an important Palaeontology Collection accessible to the general public.