Flight From Famine

Flight From Famine

The Coming of the Irish to Canada

Book - 1990
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This is the moving story of the mass migration that brought a million Irish men and women to Canada in the first half of the nineteenth century. After leaving conditions so bad that one witness described how "they wandered into towns and died in the streets," many arrived penniless, hoping to "make good" in the new world. In one tragic year, 5,000 died at sea and another 5,400 got no farther than a grave on Grosse Ile. But, despite the countless daily hardships facing settlers in a harsh new land, by the time of Confederation the Irish were the second-largest ethnic group after the French.
Publisher: Toronto : McClelland & Stewart, c1990
ISBN: 9780771054433
Branch Call Number: 971.0049162 MacK 05ad 01
Characteristics: 368 p. :,ill., maps, ports


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Mar 09, 2020

Well researched and readable--that's worth 3 stars. An additional star, because the book's focus is fairly unique in this subject: A CANADIAN perspective!

So, the reader discovers lots about West/East Canada (or, Upper and Lower Canada as we were once taught)--the impact of the immigrants on this fairly small population (combined, in 1832: 800,000) and the impact of Canada on the immigrants--it certainly was a two-way street, as immigration is today, in that respect.

What most people don't realize is the incredible mid-19th century impact of the Irish in Canada. What's better known in the Irish impact in the US--partly because many Irish who landed in British North America went south to New York (many blamed Britain for the potato famine death-toll and suffering.)

Nevertheless, by the late 1860%, 24% of Canada was of Irish background.

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