Tag Archives: Irish emigration

A Milestone for Irish in the American Civil War

The last post represented the 500th on Irish in the American Civil War. I estimate that the site in its totality is now composed of c. 1,000,000 words. I established the site in May 2010, over seven years ago, little imagining where it would lead. The site is now averaging some 10-15,000 views per month, and between 80-100,000 unique […]

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Men of the 3rd Rhode Island at Fort Pulaski in 1863 (Photographic History of the Civil War)

“Your husband was torn almost to pieces”: A Cork Woman Learns of her Roscommon Husband’s Death

The site regularly returns to the topic of letters written to inform families of the death of a loved one (see Communicating Death & Creating Memory on Fredericksburg’s Streets). As we have seen, these communications occasionally didn’t hold back in providing the gruesome details of an Irish emigrants demise (e.g. Imagining the Horrors of Death: […]

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Hubert & Mary McNamara (Ruth Davis-Hastler)

Picturing the McNamaras: Images of the Irishman whose final letter home was cut from his body at Cold Harbor

On 2nd June 1864 Hubert McNamara of the 155th New York Infantry, Corcoran’s Irish Legion, prepared a letter for his wife. He was aware that the following morning he would be going into action; he was among the men of the Army of the Potomac then preparing to assault the Confederate lines at Cold Harbor. […]

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The Crater as it appeared in 1865 (Photographic History of the Civil War)

“I am so heartily sick of this life”: The Civil War Letter of Daniel Crowley, Part 3

I am pleased to bring to readers the third and final instalment of Catherine Bateson’s guest posts charting the correspondence of Cork’s Daniel Crowley, who served in the 28th Massachusetts Infantry, Irish Brigade in 1864-5. If you have missed the earlier articles, you can catch up on them here and here. As the protracted operations […]

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“The Forgotten Irish” Event at The National Archives, Washington D.C.

As many readers of the site will be aware, the majority of my work concentrates on material from the widows’ and dependent pension files of Irish Civil War soldiers held in the National Archives, Washington D.C. This was also the source material on which my new book The Forgotten Irish: Irish Emigrant Experiences in America […]

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Cork Harbour as it appeared in the early 1870s (Library of Congress)

“My Cousin told me…that all my family were in America”: A Search for 1860s Cork Emigrants

The widows and dependent pension files often give us an extraordinary insight into 19th century emigration. Occasionally these are from the perspectives of those who remained in Ireland. I recently came across just such a letter, written in late 1863 by Dan McCarthy in Cork to his brother Ted in America. Its detail reveals just how […]

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National Library of Ireland (Photo:YvonneM)

Podcast: The Forgotten Irish– Revealing the Personal Stories of 19th Century Emigrants

On 18th August last I was privileged to return to the National Library of Ireland in Dublin to deliver one of the Summer lunchtime talks at the institution, which are organised by Eneclann and the Ancestor Network. The title of the talk was The Forgotten Irish: Revealing the Personal Stories of 19th Century Emigrants through American […]

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The Forgotten Irish Book: Cover and Contents

As many of you know, I have spent the majority of my writing time since the 2013 publication of The Irish in the American Civil War concentrating on one major source for the Irish experience of 19th century America, namely the widows and dependent pension files of Union soldiers and sailors. It soon became my intention to […]

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Irish in the American Civil War YouTube

Video: Diaspora Ireland- Cobh & The American Civil War

I recently decided to launch a YouTube Channel associated with this page. My intention is to explore sites in Ireland specifically from the perspective of the diaspora, and to explain something of these diaspora connections to viewers. This weekend we travelled to Cobh (formerly Queenstown) in Co. Cork, Ireland’s main emigrant port, to discuss some of the town […]

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Gold miners in California in the late 1840s or early 1850s. Irish flocked from not only the United States but also from Ireland and Australia to participate (Library of Congress)

“I Saw San Francisco When it Was Only a Village”: The Voices of California’s Irish Pioneers

Laurence Macken was born in Slane, Co. Meath on 12th May 1828. In 1850 he was a young man just three days shy of his 22nd birthday when he landed in the California Territory, one of the thousands of emigrants and natives alike who had been infected by the gold fever that had spread like wildfire throughout […]

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