Dublin City has a rich literary heritage, including four Nobel laureates. It is chronicled here in this unique and interesting museum using audio and visual exhibits. The museum first opened in 1991, housed in a beautifully restored townhouse located on Parnell Square. The building was formerly the home of John Jameson, a member of the family famous for its Irish whiskey. The museum's central focus is on its Gallery of Writers. This focal exhibit is found in the huge former drawing room, tastefully decorated with paintings and unique plasterwork. Items on display include posters, diaries, and several one of a kind manuscripts. First editions of Joyce's Ulysses and The Dubliner, as well as Bram Stoker's Dracula can be seen, in addition to an 1804 edition of Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels and an 1899 edition of Oscar Wilde's Ballad of Reading Gaol.
The museum features 1000 years of literary history, with exhibits on writers ranging from Wilde, Yeats, George Bernard Shaw and Samuel Beckett to Patrick Kavanagh, Flann O'Brien, and Roddy Doyle. There is also a special children's room that focuses on literature for and about the young reader. The "Teller of Tales" exhibits showcases Behan, O'Flaherty, and O'Faolain. There is also a bookshop, known for its excellent out of print search service, and café, with readings held on a regular basis. The basement restaurant, called Chapter One, is recognized for its currant sprinkled scones.