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TOPIC: Irish Famine Commemorations in WA in 2017

Irish Famine Commemorations in WA in 2017 02 Mar 2017 09:09 #1559

  • Jenni Ibrahim
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From the first Irish Famine Commemoration WA newsletter

Famine Commemoration 2017

BUNBURY: Saturday 20th May 2017 at King Cottage Museum
Dedicated to Bridget Mulqueen from Co Limerick.
Bridget arrived in Western Australia in 1853 on the Travancore
Bunbury Contact: Lorraine Carlson 0419 791 672

DARDANUP: Sunday 21st May 2017 at Dardanup Catholic Church
Dedicated to Elizabeth Carbury from Co Galway
Elizabeth arrived in Western Australia in 1853 on the Palestine
Dardanup Contact: Cllr. Danny Harris 0408 928 459

To get on the mailing list for further updates contact Fred Rea of Irish Scene (now a proud WAGS member) fredrea(at)iinet.net.au

Jenni Ibrahim

Rest of the newsletter:
Between 1845 and 1851, the population of Ireland was devastated by a terrible potato famine. Historians estimate that as a result of the tardy and inadequate British government response to the "great hunger," one million or more Irish men, women and children died. Many Irish were transported or emigrated to Australia and to other countries.

This tragic and profoundly important event in the history of Ireland should be remembered and better understood by this present and all future generations.

The Western Australia Irish Famine Commemoration's (WAIFC) specific purpose is to provide the people of Western Australia with a deeper understanding of the effects of the "Great Famine," both on Ireland and on the emigrants who came to the Swan River Colony. In 1832 the Swan River Colony was renamed the Colony of Western Australia however, the name "Swan River Colony" remained in informal use for many years afterwards.

The WAIFC aim is to remember the young Irish women who came to Australia as a result of the Famine. They arrived in Western Australia on the Travencore and the Palestine in 1853. Our objective is to keep the memory of these young women alive by holding an Annual Commemoration day, giving information talks, maintaining a Facebook page and producing this newsletter.

By publicising and memorialising "the famine" and its consequences at annual Famine Commemorations throughout the state, we hope that our fellow Western Australians from many different national backgrounds will be moved to reflect upon the universal lessons of history and to act, when need be, to avert similar human calamities in the future.

Famine Commemoration in York
The first of these Commemorations was held in 2016 in York and was dedicated to Mary Ann Taylor who arrived on the Palestine.

CLICK to watch last year's event in York

Mary was one of a group of young women who came to Western Australia on the Palestine ship in 1853 from the Mountbellew workhouse. It was renowned that these bride-ships carried destitute girls from orphanages, poorhouses or had a sponsored fare during the Great Famine.

The young Irish women from The Palestine
The girls and their age who travelled on the Palestine:
Pat O`Brien
Biddy O Brien
Mick O Brien
Catho O Brien
Mary O Brien
Catho Cunningham
Mary Geraghty
Mary Flanagan
Mary Flynn
Ms Staunton
Mary Taylor
Ms Egan
Biddy Fitzgerald
Ellen Hansberry
Mary Kilroy
Biddy Tully
Mary Cunningham
Biddy Bodkin
Mary Butler
Mary Neary
Mary Flynn
Henry Noone
Ms Nilfagle
Cathie Hughes
Georgia Ne
Marie Lorre
Maria Egan
Celia Coldman
Catho Glynn
Mary Cathe
Mary Mannion
Mary Dooley
Esther Tully
Ms Carberry
Mary Carberry
Eliza Trasta
Catho Coleman
Ms Atkins

2017 Event
This year on May 20 we will remember Bridget Mulqueen who arrived on the Travencore in January 1853 and Elizabeth Carbury who arrived, with her sister Mary on the Palestine.

Travel Box:
As part of the commemoration a travel box, similar to what the young women carried their belongings in, will be a feature of the ceremony. This Travel Box was made at Arbour Hill prison in Dublin under the guiding hand of Mark O’Brien.
At the beginning of 2015 the Irish Prison Service and Michael Blanch of the C.C.I.F.V. (the Committee for the Commemoration of Irish Famine Victims) came together to undertake a project called Famine Travel Boxes.
Michael has been campaigning for a national day of remembrance for famine victims for many years. He finally saw his efforts come to fruition in 2015 when the Irish government announced that the second Sunday in May will now become National Famine Memorial Day.
CLICK to find out more about the CCIFV

Travel Boxes will be arriving into Western Australia in a few weeks for this year's commemorations.

Dardanup & Bunbury Events
In our next newsletter we will have more information on the Dardanup and Bunbury events and the story of the travel boxes..

Fred Rea, Project Coordinator.
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