Connemara Girl
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Mr Tuke's Fund

Connemara Emigration in the 1880s


With essays from Prof. Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh, Prof. Christine Kinealy, Dr Gerard Moran, Kathleen Villiers-Tuthill and others, this informative booklet (48pp) investigates emigration from Ireland in the 19th century, the thinking behind the Tuke scheme and the experience of the emigrant on arrival.

James Hack Tuke, an English banker and philanthropist, set up and managed an emigration scheme that assisted almost 9,500 people from the west of Ireland to emigrate to Canada and the United States of America in the early 1880s. With funds raised privately and later from government, the Tuke scheme was expected to benefit not just those who emigrated, but also those who stayed: the departure of such large numbers would free up land for distribution among the remaining tenants.

Over 3,000 emigrated from Connemara, or the Clifden Union, as the region was officially known. The Connemara group, made up of families and individuals, left from Galway port between the years 1882 and 1884.

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