Limerick City Museum
|Location||Henry Street, Limerick|
|Collection size||Over 60,000 objects|
The Limerick Museum was founded in 1907 and in the Carnegie Free Library and Museum building (established by Andrew Carnegie on Pery Square. Limerick Museum opened to the public in 1916 and remained in Pery Square until 1975. In 1979, the Museum relocated to two restored houses in John Square. In 1998 the Museum was on the move again this time to Castle Lane where it opened to the public in 1999. In 2012, the Museum was moved to a temporary location Civic Buildings, Merchant's Quay in due to the refurbishment and expansion of King John's Castle (Limerick). In May 2017, it moved to the present location in the old Franciscans Friary on Henry Street.
The museum is run by Limerick City and County Council. It is fully accessible to all. Entry to the museum is free.
Limerick Museum received national recognition as a museum under the Cultural Institution Act 1997, which allowed it to become a designated museums of the collection of archaeological material. Before 1977 the Limerick city librarian was also the curator. The full-time museum curators included: Larry Walsh - 1977 to 2012.; Brian Hodkinson - 2012 to 2017; Dr Matthew Potter - 2017 to Present.
The mission of Limerick Museum is to collect, preserve and display items relating to the history of Limerick city and county from the Stone Age to the present day. It has a collection of sixty thousand objects gathered through donations, purchase and long term loan.
The first exhibition ever held in Limerick Museum was in 1940 to commemorate the centenary of the death of Limerick novelist Gerald Griffin. Since then there have been a series of exhibitions on various aspects of Limerick's history and culture. This gives an opportunity for the rotation of objects within the collection by topic. For example in the Retrospective Exhibition (2014) the Charter of the City signed by King Charles II of England, a sword given to the city by Queen Elizabeth I of England as well as many other interesting items relating to civic life in the city were on display.
In 1980 the Treasures of Thomond exhibition was held to mark the reopening of Limerick Museum in John Square. The centre piece of was the O'Dea mitre and crozier on loan from the Diocese of Limerick. These are now on display in the Hunt Museum.
In 2014, during the Limerick City of Culture, Limerick Museum collaborated with Limerick Archives under the name LM&A Limerick Museum and Archives in the production of the Retrospective a two part exhibition held between April 2014 to December 2014 marking the end of Limerick City and Limerick County Councils. The Limerick City Council exhibition was held in Limerick Museum and marked 800 years of local government in the city. The Limerick Museum also hosted a Limerick lace exhibition with LM&A to launched to coincide with the publication of the Amazing Lace by Dr. Matthew Potter, edited by Jacqui Hayes in December 2014.
Following the move of the Limerick Museum to the Franciscans, Henry Street, in 2017 the following exhibitions have been held. In autumn/winter 2017 Richard Harris memorials in association with Richard Harris Film Festival. In March 2018 John McCarthy Circus Bar of Limerick related circus memorabilia to mark the 250 anniversary of the first modern circus.
Noted Items in the Collection
- The largest meteorite ever to fall on the British Isles lands at Adare, County Limerick.
- A rare intact Codd-neck bottle
- Largest collection of Limerick lace.
- Selection of 18th and 19th Century Limerick Silver
- Scabbard used by Lord Edward Fitzgerald at his arrest in 1798 
- Three Blunderbuss firearms
- Stone Age and Iron Age Archaeological finds
- A range of clothing including a gentleman's suit c.1706 
- History of Limerick
- Limerick Museum and Archives
- Hunt Museum
- Limerick City Gallery of Art
- List of museums in the Republic of Ireland
- "Limerick City Museum Online Catalogue". Limerick City Council. Archived from the original on June 26, 2011. Retrieved June 30, 2011. External link in
- Spellissy, Sean 'The History of Limerick', Limerick 1993. ISBN 0953468313
- "Limerick to unveil circus Memorabilia collection at John McCarthy's Circus Bar Exhibition". Retrieved 2018-05-19.
- The Guinness Book of Answers (3rd ed.). Enfield: Guinness Superlatives. 1980. p. 29. ISBN 0-85112-202-7.