During the Great Hunger of 1845 – 1851, approximately 1 million Irish men, women and children left Ireland, either voluntarily or through forced emigration. Of course, in the mid 1800’s, communication back home was not as easy as it is in our day: no Zoom, no FaceTime, no messaging, no phone calls. The emigrants, often homesick and wanting to stay in touch with their loved ones, used the postal system to stay in touch. The Irish in America (and specifically Irish women) became prolific letter writers. The letters contained updates from their new homes, inquiries as to what was happening in Ireland, and very importantly, funds to support those who remained behind.
Mavis McGetrick will discuss the sheer volume of letters sent from America and the impact of the financial support these women provided to their families back home. Carolyn Reeves will sing poignant Irish ballads to accompany the lecture.
Email email@example.com for the Zoom link. We should be able to livestream it to Facebook too.