Great Hunger Grave Markers – the Victims will not be forgotten
In recent months Bill Fahey and Michael Blanch have been working on a project that is truly a labor of dedication to those who died in the Great Hunger. Their plan, which is now gathering much support, is to place a memorial marker on every Famine Grave in Ireland. Many of these graves are unmarked. Some are in the vicinity of workhouses or what is left of the workhouse sites. Other are elsewhere in Irish towns and their locations are, many times, known by residents from information passed down in oral history. The marker has been designed and many grave sites have been identified.
What is hugely encouraging is the support that has gathered around this ambitious project which is based on a strong feeling of humanity. Cardinal Brady wrote a letter to all the Bishops in Ireland encouraging their involvement. The Church of Ireland has pledged access to records of grave sites. Afri is now working with Bill and Michael to create awareness and motivate support. Politicians have come in with their support and will help in their own areas.
Let’s all put our hands together, in a loud round of applause, for Bill, Michael and all who are involved.
We will be posting more information as the project moves forward.
From: Bill Fahey <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: January 31, 2014
Subject: Fwd: An Gorta Mor Markers.
The markers that are being referred to are similar to a headstones with a plaque honoring the Victims of the Hunger. There are many Unmarked Graves in Ireland where Hunger Victims are buried. We are trying to locate these graves and put a marker over the Victims to honor them. After over 160 years, it is time to acknowledge their existence and their history.
I went to Ireland in Oct. & Nov., 2013 and worked with Michael Blanch concerning this subject. We spoke to many people and most agreed something should be done about Hunger Victims buried in Unmarked Graves. They should be recognized and memorialized for the suffering they endured. They had the same flesh and blood as we have and should be treated as family.
We are just getting started with this project and will report on future issues.
Michael Blanch and his Committee for the Commemoration of the Irish Famine Victims have done great work in Ireland in getting the Government to have memorial events honoring the victims. They are still doing great work on this Unmarked Graves Project.
All the best,