The Story of the Choctaw Gift
A documentary about the Choctaw donation for Irish Famine relief in 1847 shortly after the Choctaw people themselves were expelled from their traditional homelands and forced to embark on the Trail of Tears to Oklahoma. It features a musical performance of The Gift in the National Famine Museum at Strokestown Park. Professor LeAnne Howe (University of Georgia and member of the Choctaw Nation), Professor Christine Kinealy (Quinnipiac University), and Dr Padraig Kirwan (Goldsmiths, University of London) share this riveting story of compassion, indigenous cultural values of giving, reciprocity, and the musical performance of cultural memory.
Please join us for a post show discussion on Zoom with the film makers Professor LeAnne Howe and Professor Christine Kinealy on Sunday, May 31st, at 7pm in Ireland, 2pm Eastern Standard Time in North America.
Ireland’s Great Hunger and the Irish Diaspora
Ireland’s Great Hunger and the Irish Diaspora (Rebecca Abbott, Christine Kinealy, Liam O’Brien) explores the historical and socio-political circumstances leading to potato failure, mass starvation and death in Ireland, 1847-52. Narrated by actor Gabriel Byrne, the film includes famine scholars,descendants of famine survivors, emigrants to Quebec, and “Earl Grey” orphan women who emigrated to Australia.
The Famine Irish and Canada’s First Responders
The Famine Irish and Canada’s First Responders (directed by Kevin Moynihan) explores Canada’s compassion in welcoming the 109,000 Irish emigrants fleeing the Great Famine in 1847. This film visits Grosse Ile, Montreal and Toronto to understand how the memorials to the Irish Famine help to tell the story of courage and compassion on the part of Canada’s First Responders.
The Famine Irish in Liverpool
Great Famine Voices Roadshow “Famine Heroes” Liverpool Programme on Saturday May 2nd. Watch these short films and online lectures from home anytime:
|1.00 pm||Introductions including Welcome by Prof Peter Shirlow (Director, The Institute of Irish Studies, University of Liverpool)|
|1.15 pm||‘Irish fever’: famine and the Liverpool-Irish by Professor John Belchem (Emeritus Professor of History, University of Liverpool)|
|1.35 pm||Liverpool Irish Festival’s Great Famine Voices connections: Impressions, expressions and connectedness by Emma Smith (Director; Liverpool Irish Festival)
Please note this presentation includes a full screening of the documentary Liverpool Family Ties: The Irish Connection.Also seepart 2 of Emma Smith’s presentation.
|2.25 pm||The Famine Irish in Liverpool from the Strokestown Park Estateby Greg Quiery, Roger Appleton (Brightmoon Media), and John O’Driscoll (Curator, National Famine Museum at Strokestown Park)|
|2.45 pm||Commemorating the Great Hunger in Liverpool by Greg Quiery (Author, historian and chairperson of the Liverpool Great Hunger Commemoration Committee)|
|3.05 pm||Liverpool: a famine frontier by Professor Christine Kinealy (Director of Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute at Quinnipiac University) and Rebecca Abbott (retired Professor of Communications at Quinnipiac University, Emmy-award winning filmmaker)|
|3:25-4pm||Recorded Question and Answer session|
The Famine Irish Legacy in Buffalo, New York
National Famine Commemoration Day 2020 Ceremony
National Famine Commemoration 2020
Officiating at the National #Famine Commemoration in Stephens Green this morning. Today our thoughts are with those who suffered during #AnGortaMór and those who came through those terrible years. Cuimhigh i gconaí 🕊Posted by Minister Josepha Madigan on Sunday, May 17, 2020
Minister Josepha Madigan pays tribute to Famine Heroes at National Famine Commemoration 2020 Ceremony in St Stephen’s Green, Dublin, 17 May.
Excerpt from Josepha Madigan, T.D., Minister for Culture, Heritage and Gaeltacht’s Address at the National Famine Commemoration Ceremony in St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin, May 17th 2020:
One of the most enduring memories of the international impact of the Great Famine is the contribution to relief by the Choctaw Nation – themselves no strangers to suffering – which has its echo in the contributions by Irish people to recent fund raising initiatives on behalf of Native American communities affected by COVID-19.
Other names that come to mind include the Polish Count Paul Strzelecki who did such important work in so many towns and and Dr. George Robert Grassett in Toronto, and the many doctors and nurses who put themselves at risk to care for the victims who had fled the Famine on the notorious coffin ships. They will always have our thanks for their courage.
As a people, we have through the generations sought to repay the gift of their generosity of spirit by the contribution of our missionaries and aid workers throughout the Developing World. As our society has changed and evolved, this commitment to helping others has never wavered and continues to this day.
In her poem Quarantine, the late Eavan Boland movingly evoked the efforts of a loving husband to support his wife with the last of his strength, when she said:
“She was sick with famine fever and could not keep up.
He lifted her and put her on his back.”
The heroes of the Famine that we honour today also sought to lift and carry those who fell or could not keep up. That same spirit of caring and self sacrifice that is embedded in the caring professions, is being seen again today as our health workers embrace the challenge of caring for those affected by Covid-19.
We honour and respect these modern-day heroes and value their courage. Perhaps we can best show our appreciation for their work, and the efforts of their forebears during the Great Famine, by adhering to those small acts of heroism we are called upon to perform in the response to the Covid-19 pandemic, and to come though these testing times, just as our ancestors once did.
Following in the Footsteps of Strokestown’s Famine Emigrants
Following in the Footsteps of Strokestown’s Famine Emigrants.
A documentary presented by Professor Mark McGowan who follows in the footsteps of emigrants from the Strokestown Park House estate of Major Denis Mahon, now home of the National Famine Museum. They were assisted to emigrate in 1847, though in reality had little choice. He follows in their footsteps along the National Famine Way walking trail on the banks of the Royal Canal to Dublin, and then on to Grosse Île and the Irish Memorial National Historic Site and the Niagara region in Canada.