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Donegal County  Museum hosts a series of talks and events during the year on topics as varied as history, geology, archaeology and flora and fauna.



Pysanky in Ireland’


Art Exhibition Unveils Ukrainian Cultural Heritage in Donegal




Donegal Volunteer Centre in collaboration with Donegal County Museum, proudly announces the opening of the captivating art exhibition – ‘Pysanky in Ireland’. The exhibition showcases Pysanky, the Ukrainian national painted eggs tradition and invites visitors to delve into the rich tapestry of Ukrainian cultural heritage.  This free exhibition runs from April 16th to Friday April 26th 2024 in Donegal County Museum, High Road, Letterkenny.




Each Pysanka represents a distinct facet of Ukraine, adorned with unique paintings with profound meanings. These symbols have evolved over time - originally, they were to ward off evil, to ensure bountiful harvests and to bring good luck. Across the regions, the symbols varied in interpretation, encompassing motifs of flowers, animals and Christian symbols with geometric patterns symbolising love, unity with nature and prosperity. Colours also play a significant role with each conveying distinct meanings - red symbolises life and love, while black signifies the sacred and the unknown; yellow represents the moon and the harvest; blue embodies the sky and good health, and white symbolises purity and light.




Pysanky in Ireland’ was initiated by the Ukrainian Volunteers of Ireland, who invited art enthusiasts from all over Ireland to contribute to the creation of Pysanky in their local context. The artists from Donegal included Nadiia Dyka, Oleksandr Tkachenko, Yuliia Makoshyna from Dungloe along with Hanna Pidkaliuk, Viktor Dovbnia from Buncrana. The Donegal Volunteer Centre supported these dedicated volunteers with materials as part of its culture exchange initiatives.




Speaking about the exhibition, Roksana Ollinyk, Volunteer Support Officer at Donegal Volunteer Centre, said, "The 'Pysanky in Ireland' exhibition embodies the cultural connections that transcend borders. Through these intricately painted symbols of Ukrainian tradition, we celebrate the universal language of art, creating understanding and appreciation across diverse communities."




Caroline Carr, Donegal County Museum, added, "This colourful exhibition celebrates the intricate beauty of Pysanky, weaving together stories of resilience, tradition, and cultural identity. We are delighted to have this opportunity to showcase the interconnectedness of our cultures."




Following its showcase in Donegal, the exhibition will embark on a journey across various counties of Ireland, spreading the beauty and significance of Pysanky artistry.




‘Pysanky in Ireland’ runs from April 16th to Friday April 26th   2024 and is open from 10am to 4.30 pm Monday to Friday and 1 – 4.30pm on Saturdays. Admission is free.




For media information on ‘Pysanky in Ireland’ please contact,Laura Mannion, DLDC, 087 29 49 302/ [email protected]






 On International Museum Day on 18 May 2023 , join us for  two events 





 Thursday 18th May, 11am – 12:30pm  


Weaving & Spinning with Johnny Spinning Wheel


The sound of the spinning wheel has been part of the music of rural


Ireland for generations. Learn about spinning and weaving in this taster


session with Johnny Spinning Wheels. Johnny Shiels is a third generation


spinning wheel maker.




Fíodóireacht  & Sníomh le Johnny Spinning Wheel


Tá fuaim na rotha mar chuid de cheol na tuaithe


in Éirinn leis na glúnta anuas. Foghlaim faoi sníomh agus fíodóireacht sa


seisiún seo le Johnny Spinning Wheels. Is déantóir rotha sníomh den tríú


glúin é Johnny Shiels.


Capacity: 10 Max


Venue: Donegal County Museum, High Road, Letterkenny, Co Donegal F92 XH2R






Archaeological Survey of County Donegal - Recent Discoveries

 Thursday 18th May 7.30pm


 Donegal County Museum, High Road, Letterkenny, Co Donegal F92 XH2R


Join National Monuments Service Archaeologist, Jane O'Shaughnessy to hear about the recent discovery of archaeological sites in County Donegal, dating from Prehistoric times to the early 1600's with sites from Cairns, Rock Art to Hillforts. Jane is the National Monuments Service Survey Controller for Counties Donegal, Sligo and Mayo.


This talk form part of Donegal County Museum's 'ARCH 40' celebrations, as it is 40 years since the publication of the pioneering ' Archaeological Survey of County Donegal ‘. County Donegal was the first county in Ireland to have a full survey of its archaeological sites conducted and published in book form.


 Admission is free


 For booking and information T 074 9124613


E [email protected]









County Donegal World War I database, “The County Donegal Roll of Honour 1914 – 1918”,


Donegal County Museum is delighted to launch its online County Donegal World War I database, “The County Donegal Roll of Honour 1914 – 1918”, as part of Donegal County Council’s Decade of Centenaries Commemorative Programme.


This searchable database contains information on each known person from County Donegal who died as a result of the War. Information contained in this database includes name, service number and place of birth as well as additional information intensively researched by Donegal County Museum., Culture Division, Donegal County Council. The database  listings are based on the 5th edition of the County Donegal Book of Honour, The Great War 1914-1918,  which was updated with assistance from the public and under the guidance of a new Committee and was edited and  reprinted by the Museum in 2019.


This County database is a work in progress and is designed to be updated as new information is uncovered. We have made every effort to ensure that the names and details of all those that died have been included and we acknowledge the assistance of all those who contributed information to the book and we wish to acknowledge those who worked on this project  - Judith McCarthy, Donegal County Museum, Caroline Carr, Donegal County Museum and Paul Earley, Information Systems, Donegal County Council


Information may exist on others from Donegal who died during the War, please forward any information to Donegal County Museum, High Road, Letterkenny Co. Donegal, Ireland or email us on [email protected] or contact us via the contact form on the website.


It is available to view at and


Donegal County Museum has been undertaking research on all those from Donegal involved in World War I since 2001. Over the years the Museum has organised and participated in a variety of events examining the story of Donegal’s role in the War. This project has been funded by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sports and Media under the Community Strand of the 2021 Decade of Centenaries programme as part of the Decade of Centenaries Initiative 2012-2023.



 Currently on display is our latest major exhibition in partnership with Donegal County Archives 

‘A Common Humanity: Full Circle’ - The Ann Doherty Collection


 This powerful photographic exhibition of never seen before stunning photographs by Ann Doherty, renowned former Documentary Photographer features

ordinary people often living in extraordinary situations across the world from Donegal, Ireland , Scotland to Sierra Leone, from Italy to Armenia, Ukraine to Egypt.


Ann worked as a documentary photographer across the globe between 1994 – 2005. She photographed for the Sunday Times Magazine between 1997- 2004, covering the after-effects of war, Communism and poverty throughout the world. Her images bring the lives of people from many different nations and cultures sharply into focus against backgrounds of conflict, poverty, social deprivation, hardship, trauma, and remoteness. The stark beauty and honesty of Ann’s work reveals the indomitable spirit and will to survive of those pushed to the edge of human experience.


Ann is from Scotland and her family hails from Gweedore and Gola.


This project was funded through the Heritage Council Stewardship Fund 2022.



Admission is free. Donegal County Museum, High Road, Letterkenny, Co Donegal T 074 9124613 E [email protected]

Opening Hours

Monday – Friday: 10:00 - 16:30

Closed for lunch 12.30 – 13.00

Saturday: 13.00 – 16.30




 ‘Life in the Workhouse’ - Living History Workhouse Tours

There will be two tours on Culture Night on Friday 23rd September  of Donegal County Museum ‘s ‘Life in the Workhouse’ - Living History Workhouse Tours at 6.15 and 7.30pm 

Donegal County Museum invites you to step back in time to hear the stories of those who worked and stayed in the County Donegal Workhouses during the Revolutionary Period (1919- 1923).


By using the records preserved in the Donegal Archives Service, visitors to the  County Museum will meet the Master and Matron of the Workhouse, as well as some of the inmates of the workhouse in the final years of the system.  You will meet Frances Campbell, a Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers soldier who returned  home Shell Shocked from WWI and hear the story of  Mary Breslin who gave birth to her son James in the Donegal workhouse in 1920. Blue Eagle Production were commissioned by Donegal County Museum to produce these tour and feature local actor including local actors


Anne Gallagher - Matron


Eoghan Mac Giolla Bhrighde- Master


Andrew Tinney - Frances Campbell


Amy Kate Callaghan – Mary Breslin


The tours are Free but booking is required to Donegal County Museum, High Road Letterkenny T 0749124613 E [email protected]




These tours are funded under the Community Strand of the 2022 Decade of Centenaries programme by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media.





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