Postcards of Tralee

While Killarney is the main tourist town in Kerry, Tralee is the county town and best known for its annual Festival of Kerry and associated song "The Rose of Tralee".

The town is well represented in this collection of postcards and, in particular the streetscapes featured in the collection are very informative of town life in the late 19th century and early 20th century.


Day Place and Dominican Church,Tralee

Postcard from photograph of Tralee at the turn of the 19th century.It features the Dominican Church opened in 1871 and the adjoining Day Place built in 1805 as a speculative venture by local-born judgeRobert Day(1745-1841). It captures a summers day in Tralee with a solitary walker taking the middle of the road unimpeded by traffic of any kind

Day Place and Dominican Church,Tralee -

Nelson Street,Tralee 1908

This second photogaph offers a number of contrasts and changes to the earlier postcard. It is perhaps ten years later.The townsmen,except for the young boys,show very little interest in the photographer.Indeed they appear to show no interest at all. The sender of the photograph refers to "Mr Donkey and cart standing in the street" The barrels of porter were a common feature of the town in 1908 and for many years later. The trees attached to the Church of Ireland presbytery are now enclosed by a wall which stood until recent times

Nelson Street,Tralee 1908 -

Nelson Street,Tralee

Postcard photograph of Nelson Street (later renamed Ashe Street after Kerry patriot Thomas Ashe)taken about 1900. The photogragher has attracted a crowd of rapt onlookers indicating that photography was still a novelty in Tralee.The onlookers add a fascinating and informative dimension to the photograph a hundred years on.It is clear the photographer was happy to have them included The street remains the same today except for the clump of trees in the background which is now a road. One of the town's notable buildings,Tralee Court House lies hidden from view on the right hand side.

Nelson Street,Tralee -

Town Park,Tralee

This is a postcard which illustrates the value of photography in capturing areas that no longer exist. The "Green" or "the Bowling Green" was the preserve of the upper classes prior to its purchase by Tralee Urban Council in 1922. The Lodge still stands but the area where the two boys study the cameraman forms part of Denny St. The pathway leads into the Town Park proper.

Town Park,Tralee -

The Mall,Tralee

Postcard photograph of Tralee town centre posted to the USA in 1958.The sender describes the town as a "nice little place"and refers to the song The Rose of Tralee which he describes as wonderful. The postcard depicts a typical scene "down town" in the late 1950s. The bicycle still predominates over the motorcar and the traditional form of dress known as the shawl is still in evidence. An unusual feature of this postcard is the almost clear blue sky which is very rarely found in Tralee.

The Mall,Tralee -


previousPrevious - Further Postcard Messages
Next - Buildings of Kerrynext