The Great Famine Voices Roadshow was welcomed to Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut, by Professor Christine Kinealy, Founding Director of Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute. Professor Kinealy addressed the Roadshow about the legacy of escaped slave Frederick Douglass and his journey to Ireland during the Great Hunger in front of the Institute’s Douglass statue. She also paid tribute to Elihu Burritt, a Quaker from New Britain, Connecticut, who bore witness to the intense suffering of the Irish in his Journal of a Visit of Three Days to Skibbereen and its Neighbourhood (1847) which helped attract international aid.
The Great Famine Voices Roadshow was also welcomed to Hamden, Connecticut, by Dr Gerard Moran, who recounted the legacy of James Hack Tuke, a Quaker Philanthropist who helped nearly ten thousand Irish people to escape from Connemara and Mayo, especially the Belmullet peninsula, to Canada and the United States during the “forgotten famine” of 1882-1884.
Several descendants of those assisted emigrants including Catherine Corless, Lenora Kenney Daniel, Ethan Daniel, Jane Kennedy, and Richard Rook (author of Tiernan’s Wake) as well as Dr Margaret Lynch shared their stories about their ancestors with the Roadshow. They are featured in the group photograph below left.
Anne Marie Bell shared with the Great Famine Voices Roadshow her stories of her ancestors from the crown estate at Ballykilcline, County Roscommon, who were forced to emigrate to Rutland, Vermont, during the Great Hunger. She is a member of the Ballykilcline Society that has held regular family reunions, such as the one at Strokestown Park House pictured above right.
Mike Murphy, head of cartography in the Geography Department at University College Cork, demonstrated for the Roadshow the award winning Great Irish Famine Online website, which was developed in partnership with the National Famine Commemoration Committee, Department of Culture, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht.
Rebecca Abbot (Quinnipiac University) introduces her Emmy award winning documentary Ireland’s Great Hunger and the Irish Diaspora (co-produced by Liam O’Brien), featuring Professor Christine Kinealy, and narrated by Gabriel Byrne.
Ireland’s Great Hunger and the Irish Diaspora can be viewed here
Mary Ann Moran recounted for the Roadshow the story of her ancestors leaving Dingle in County Kerry for Springfield, Massachusetts, as well as her fascination with the Blasket Islands.
GREAT FAMINE VOICES ROADSHOW HAMDEN, CT GALLERY
GREAT FAMINE VOICES ROADSHOW NEW HAVEN (2018)
The Great Famine Voices Roadshow was welcomed to New Haven by Professor Christine Kinealy, Director of Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute at Quinnipiac University in neighbouring Hamden, Connecticut.
Christine Kinealy declared “that I am delighted to welcome the Great Famine Voices Roadshow to New Haven. It is such a joy to know that stories of the Famine are finally being recaptured and being made available to a wider audience.
It is very appropriate that the Roadshow should choose New Haven, because the east coast of America was the final home of so many Famine emigrants, not merely of the Great Famine of 1845-1852, but of the many famines that preceded 1845 and came after 1852. Many people emigrated through poverty, hunger, and famine throughout the whole of the nineteenth century. To hear their stories really fleshes out what we know about the Great Hunger.
The Great Famine Voices Roadshow was held in the Knights of Columbus Museum in New Haven, where it was welcomed by Peter Sonski.
Professor Christopher Dowd from the University of New Haven also participated in the Great Famine Voices Roadshow in New Haven, where he explained the pivotal role that the Famine Irish played in the development of American popular culture.