The Largest Amount of Good: Quaker Relief in Ireland 1654-1921

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In most communities local business, political, civic and religious leaders established non-partisan, non-sectarian citizens committees to collect contributions. While South Carolina followed this model in most cities or towns that created relief committees, Irish-Americans led the way in Charleston through the activities of the Hibernian Society.

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Actually, efforts in the South by Irish-Americans and non-Irish to raise funds for famine relief have been given minor mention in historical works, even in studies of the Irish communities in New Orleans, Richmond, Savannah, Charleston or Memphis. However, according to historian Mark Greenberg, few studies have focused on immigrants in southern cities, and even the most recent scholarship on the Irish-American communities has ignored the outpouring of relief in the South in In Savannah, for example, more than half of the white adults in were immigrants and two-thirds of the foreign born, in and , immigrated from Ireland.

While the Irish community acted as the catalyst for relief contributions in Charleston and in South Carolina as a whole, non-Irish quickly joined the cause as they did in other parts of the country.

Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)

The famine in Ireland had two consequences for South Carolina-the creation of a famine relief movement and a further exodus of Irish to Charleston. Famine-induced flight led to the primary and secondary immigration of the Irish to southern cities like Richmond, Memphis, New Orleans, Savannah and Charleston between and as it did to northern cities, like Boston, New York, Brooklyn and Albany.

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News of the potato blight reached the United States in the winter of , and small-scale efforts to solicit contributions began in Boston, New York and a few other cities. An unknown error has occurred. As the distress continued the CRC decided in mid-summer to disband the farm and use the funds for the relief of distress.

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Colmanstown gave one last service to Ireland when the remainder of the money realised from its sale was given to the Hospital for Incurables, the only institution of its kind in Ireland and one which accepted patients of all faiths and positions in society.

This project was continued long after the end of the famine though the Quakers only remained in Colmanstown until The project was unprofitable and the farm was eventually sold to J. Smith, from Co. Cavan, and his wife who operated the farm of acres and employed many local people. Smith died in and the couple had no children.

Helen E. Hatton — The Largest Amount of Good: Quaker Relief in Ireland, 1654–1921

Cows, calves, pigs, fowl as well as sheep were kept in the enterprise with crops of potatoes, barley and oats cultivated. Foul was also kept.

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  7. The family kept 5 horses. A staff of five people worked on the farm, a housemaid was also employed. Families lived in the gatehouses and the including the Connolly, Doyle and Browne families. The farm was sold in and acquired by the Irish Land Commission for division among local farmers. Many of the buildings erected by the Quakers have since been knocked down but some walls remain. It was conceived, sketched, planned, constructed and painted in three days — quite remarkable. The largest amount of good: Quaker relief in Ireland, Your email address will not be published.

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    I consent to my name and e-mail address being stored along with this comment, and to the website editors communicating with me by e-mail about the comment if necessary. My name may be published alongside the comment on the website, but my e-mail address will not be published. My information will not be shared with any third party see our Privacy Statement - opens in a new window. Jimmy Laffey. Quaker Farm model — side view Alfie Doyle.

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