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10th-Jan-2014 04:54 pm - World War One: Irish soldiers' records online

BBC
10 Jan 2014

See also: In Flanders Fields

Northern Ireland's first and deputy first ministers have joined the Irish deputy prime minister in launching Irish World War One records online.

Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness met Eamon Gilmore in Dublin to mark the launch.

It means records are available to a worldwide audience.

Digital records of individual Irish soldiers are now available online, following collaboration between Google and the In Flanders Fields museum.

"As we enter an important decade of commemorations in both our countries, it is my hope that what has been established here today will keep alive the history and the stories of those who did not return from war," Mr Robinson said.

"This work will allow the stories of the fallen to be recorded for the benefit of future generations and will allow us to express our thanks and acknowledge the sacrifice of men who died helping to preserve our freedom."

Mr McGuinness said: "Over 200,000 Irishmen fought in the war and over 49,000 were killed, which shows the human impact of the war on the island of Ireland. It is important all their personal stories are told and this innovative project ensures the memory of those Irish soldiers killed will continue."

In July 2012, the Irish ambassador to Belgium, Eamonn MacAodha, launched a project with Google to make records available to all and absolutely free.

The collaboration with Google ensured that the work could be financed and technically supported.

Log on to In Flanders Fields, type in a name and see the place of birth, rank, regiment, service number, date of death and place of burial / commemoration of each individual soldier with that name, where the information is available.

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