They left Ireland because of:
- religious conflicts
- lack of political freedom
- terrible economic conditions
- potato famine.
- lack of land.
They came to America because of:
- the promise of owning land
- freedom of religion
The Potato Famine
The potato crop failed during 1845-50, resulting in the loss of one million people, which was 1/10 of
Ireland's population. This was devistating to the Irish, especially the poor who relied soley on the potatos, buttermild,
and sheep's milk for their nutrition. The remaining food became costly and the poor starved.
Here is an inside look to what life was like during the famine for many Irish citizents from Ireland: The
Famine Story by Brian Warfield.
"Police armed to the teeth guarding food depots, depots filled to the brim, people eating dogs, dogs eating
people, no food for the hungry, well fed militia guarding food on its way to ports. Protests, rioting for those with energy
to protest. Helpless, gaunt spectres, fleshless, skin hanging from weary bones, bones gripped by pain, young children looking
like old men, old men looking like corpses, corspese beside the living, the living beside the dead."
The irish immgration labor included Irish males were good for building railroads and since Irish women could
speak english they were taking in as domestic servants. During the Civil war the Irish enlisted as soon as they got to America
because it provided payed work.