Société Jersiaise

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Société Jersiaise

Societe logo.png
La Société Jersiaise was founded in 1873, after a public meeting, by 16 Jerseymen who believed passionately in the preservation of the island's customs and traditions, including the use of the French language; and in the study of its history, conservation of its monuments and historical sites, and the establishment of an island museum.

From small beginnings the organisation quickly prospered and has ever since remained at the centre of the island's efforts to preserve its heritage.

Main subjects

Museum, library and gallery

La Société operated from various temporary premises in St Helier in its early days, until the gift of 9 Pier Road enabled it to set up permanent headquarters and establish which has become an internationally renowned museum. It has remained in Pier Road ever since and its premises now provide office accommodation, meeting rooms, a members' library, archive storage, and an art gallery, in addition to the museum.

The Annual Bulletin

Central to the work of La Société is the publication of its Annual Bulletin. With the exception of the Occupation years, when issues were combined, the bulletin has been published every year since 1875. It contains general business information about La Société, reports on the activities of its many sections, and articles covering the study of all aspects of island life and history. Many of these articles are an invaluable resource for historians.

La Hougue Bie and other important prehistoric sites

One of the most important aspects of La Société's work since its formation has been uncovering and researching the world-famous prehistoric sites which have been discovered throughout the island. The most important of these are the neolithic tomb at La Hougue Bie, a property purchased by La Société in 1919, and the cave at La Cotte de St Brelade, occupied by Neanderthal man 250,000 years ago.

  • La Sociétè Jersiaise and Jersey's prehistoric sites

The photographic archive

While the main work of housing and preserving precious archive material accumulated throughout the life of La Société has largely passed to the Jersey Archive, the task of maintaining and developing the photographic archive has grown in importance in recent years and over 60,000 images dating from the mid 1840s to the present day now comprise the principal Jersey collection of 19th and early 20th century photography.

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