Posted by in Features.

Very little is known about the Famine of 1847 apart from the mass emigration in the West of Ireland, Claregalway included. Many people went to America from Claregalway on ships. One such case for example was that of two brothers from Clogher. One died on the way and was thrown over-board. The other brother got across and settled there and in later years bought a pub there.

Houses also fell in numbers around the Parish. For example there were 108 houses in Carnmore West before the Famine and after it there were only 96. In Carnmore East before 1847 it had only one house and after 1847 there were eight houses. In Cahergowan before 1847 it had 98 houses and after 1847 only 86 houses remained. In Curraghmore before the Famine it had three houses and after only one house remained.

It is also believed that some 80 to 90 people from the Tuam and Corofin area died that year under the old Nine Arches Bridge at Claregalway. There were no coffins at that time and people were buried with mats of straw as coffins. In Claregalway Friary there is only one memorial slab on a young girl, aged 16 years, that has the 1847 date, but there is no evidence that her death was in any way linked to the Great Famine of 1847.

Ar Deis Dé go raibh a n-ainm dílis is linne iad a beannacht
Johnny Casserly, Cahergowan