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“Irish Famine Migrant Stories In Ontario”

The original Ellis Island Immigration Station in New York Harbour was officially opened in 1892 and the first immigrant to pass through its doors was a 15 year old girl from County Cork, by the name of Annie Moore, (April 24th, 1877 – December 6th, 1924).
Annie arrived from Cobh (Queenstown) in Ireland, aboard the steamship ‘Nevada’ in 1892. Her brothers, Anthony 14 and Philip 12, had journeyed with her.

Now a virtual exhibition entitled “Irish Famine Migrant Stories In Ontario” will tell the story of Ontario’s Irish migrants from 5 years earlier, “Black 47” (1847) and the caregivers who put their lives on the line, during one of the worst health-care crises recorded in Canadian history.

As officials in Tipperary Co. Council, together with local elected representatives and politicians (namely Mr Michael Lowry and Mr Jackie Cahill) support the destruction of our Great Famine history here in Thurles; this new exhibition will apprise the untold tales of Irish Great Famine migrants, who endured a typhus epidemic, while emigrating to Canada.

Created by the Ireland Park Foundation (IPF), this virtual exhibit, which took more than four years to assemble, will follow the lives of 100,000 famine migrants, latter who crossed the Atlantic Ocean landing in Grosse Isle, an island located in the St. Lawrence River in Quebec, Canada, and onto the shores of Ontario during this Great Hunger, on board ‘coffin ships’ that would claim the lives of some 20,000 people.

Some 16% of the population in Ontario, Canada, today can correctly claim Irish decent. Toronto back then, was largely a Presbyterian/Protestant city, while 80% of the Irish migrants arriving were Roman Catholic. This human melting pot of the late 1800’s laid the seeds to a diverse Canada population, the envy of the world, that we as Irish people today know and love.

In relation to our Double Ditch Survey sent to local elected representatives; same due to be returned last Sunday evening, March 14th; we can confirm that we have received some answers which will be published later.

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