From Mike McCormack, National Historian, Ancient Order of Hibernians
Since you are the Secretary of the National Famine Commemoration Committee in Ireland, I am forwarding you an e-mail which I sent to Olivia Blanch who, I am told, is a Hunger committee member. We are searching for a date and place of the annual commemoration in Ireland for a story we are preparing for the National Hibernian Digest. We have also been informed that a Parliamentary Question has been put before the Irish House regarding the progress of this years National Famine Memorial Day. to whit:
To ask the Minister for Community, Equality and Gaelteacht Affairs to update the House on the progress this year in organising the Irish Famine Memorial Day, including details of when the National Famine Commemoration Committee are meeting; the names of the members of the Committee; what discussions the Minister has had with her counterpart in the Northern Assembly relevant to the event being hosted in the North of Ireland in 2011; and to make a statement on the matter.
We also received a copy of an e-mail from Junior Minister Michael Ring, Minister for Tourism who has also passed on the CCIFV e-mail to Minister Fitzgerald regarding the time, date and location of this years National Famine Memorial Day Commemoration (An Gorta Mor) which is supposed to be in Ulster (perhaps Donegal, Monaghan or Cavan if Northern Ireland is not possible.
The AOH in America is planning a commemoration ceremony on the weekend of May 21-22 at the Great Hunger Memorial in Boston and the National Officers will be gathering for a similar ceremony at the Great Hunger Memorial in New York City. Several other commemorations are also being planned, but it would be nice to know the date and place of the central ceremony in Ireland.
Thank you for a prompt reply
Mike McCormack, National Historian, Ancient Order of Hibernians in America
—– Original Message —–
From: Mike McCormack
Cc: Irish Hunger Committee
Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2011 3:47 PM
Subject: International Hunger commemoration
We observed the annual May commemoration of International Famine Memorial Day since it was first started in Dublin (08), then Skibbereen (09), then Murrisk (10) and now this year – where? It was planned at the outset that the base of the commemoration would rotate to the four provinces and that this year it would be Ulster, but we have no date nor place. Since its is due to occur in only one month’s time, we are understandably anxious to learn of any plans. The international committee was a great idea and we watched it grow from year to year getting more participants each year.
We, here in the U.S. have been told that it would be the weekend of May 21-22. Now we hear May 15. Which is it and where is the Irish commemoration to be. We, the National Board of the AOH in America, are planning a ceremony on May 22 at the Great Hunger Memorial in Battery Park at the tip of Manhattan. We are also planning one at the Boston Hunger Memorial that same weekend. We would like to know that we are not alone.
Thank you for a quick reply,
Mike McCormack, National Historian, Ancient Order of Hibernians