Posts filed under: New York

In 1860 one in every four people in New York was of Irish birth. The majority dwelt among the urban poor, congregating in notorious areas such as Manhattan’s Five Points. Their experience of the American Civil War was mixed, ranging...
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When the American Civil War broke out in April 1861, Ireland’s Nation newspaper predicted that the lives of Irish emigrants would be “offered in thousands. Many a mother’s heart in Ireland, long cheered by the affectionate and dutiful letter and the generous...
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My current research on Irish service in the Union military is attempting to examine the experience of Irishmen and their families across the entire sweep of Northern arms. One interesting aspect emerging from the work is evidence that Irish and...
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New Yorker Marshall Bailey’s moment in the sun came late in life. The summer of 1910 found the elderly American Civil War veteran in dire straits, consigned to life as a pauper far from the country of his birth. His...
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Irish in the American Civil War is fortunate to have Brendan Hamilton as a long-standing contributor to the site. Brendan’s painstaking research and analysis always makes for fascinating reading (see for example here and here). His latest piece is just as...
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The New York Irish-American was a major weekly newspaper serving America’s ethnic Irish community. It provided thousands of emigrants across the United States with news concerning both their local communities and their former homes in Ireland. Then, as now, advertising...
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In August 1861, tens of thousands of Irish immigrants took part in a “Monster Irish Festival” on Manhattan. Organised to benefit the widows and orphans of Irish men who had fallen at Bull Run, its scale and scope were considered...
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On 17th September 1862, 27-year-old tailor Denis Barry from Dunmanway in West Co. Cork ventured into Antietam’s West Woods with the 19th Massachusetts Infantry. He never came out again. One of the legacies of Denis’s death is the extraordinary detail...
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At the close of the American Civil War, a photographer of the Johnson & D’Utassy company paid a visit to De Camp General Hospital on David’s Island in New York Harbor. He was there to capture images of surgical cases...
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Perhaps the greatest value of the Widow’s and Dependent Pension Files is in what they can tell us about the lives of female Irish emigrants in the 19th century. There is surely no other source that provides the same level...
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