Irish Deaf Prison archive

I have found a lot of records about Deaf people in Irish prisons that you may be interested in.

I got the records from which is a very good website for genealogical and historical Irish records. It costs €60 a year to subscribe and I found it is well worth it, so if you want to do your own research on Deaf prisoners, it’s a good investment.

The records are scans of prisoner registers from prisons and bridewells around the country. It mentions what the offence was, what punishment (often a few days imprisonment, sometimes with hard labour), what the prisoner looked like, and in some cases, if the prisoner was ‘deaf’, ‘deaf and dumb’, ‘dumb’, or ‘dummy’ (awful language now of course but widely used at the time).

While I was doing research on family history, I found some records on Deaf people in prisons. Soon I started finding more and more. Some Deaf people were only mentioned once, others were back to the courts several times. Their story is a very sad one at times and it is often very difficult to imagine the tough times they had.

I haven’t finished finding out all the information and I will add more and more info when I find it.

I also added 1901 and 1911 census forms, newspaper articles and other info as well. You can also add files and comments yourselves. Would be good to have discussion about it all.

I want to share this information with as many Deaf researchers and interested people as possible so please do spread the word and ask people to contact me to view the files. Eventually, the information might be on a public website to make it easier for all, but for now this is a good way to share it.

Send me an email to if you want to access the files – you will get an email very soon with the request to join, then you can look at all the files so far…  It’s better that you download each picture file as the ‘preview’ is difficult to read. Each picture is about 1 or 2 MB.

Cheers and happy viewing

Click here to join the Archive also!
Cormac Leonard
Irish Family Trees
085 1051792