Skip to comments.Witnesses to a catastrophe
Posted on 10/19/2011 8:52:05 PM PDT by BlackVeil
A forgotten Famine burial site inside the grounds of a former workhouse in Kilkenny has yielded the remains of nearly 1,000 people, and a wealth of knowledge about how they lived and how they died.
AN GORTA MÓR, the Great Hunger, was a time of terrible human drama as Irelands poor struggled to survive the ravages of famine and disease. The chance discovery of a Famine-period burial ground in Kilkenny city now helps to tell their story,... Some one million people died and were buried as conditions and finance allowed, with the poorest ending up in burial grounds used by a network of Victorian workhouses.
It was on the grounds of just such a workhouse in Kilkenny that the remains of almost 1,000 victims were found in 2005 as work got under way on a new shopping centre.
The discovery in turn delivered an unparalleled opportunity to gather hard information about the victims and how they died, says osteoarchaeological scientist Jonny Geber.
He conducted research on the bones recovered from the burial site inside the grounds of the Kilkenny Union Workhouse, in the process gaining important insight into conditions at the time.
There are plenty of burial grounds associated with workhouses, but these were known and would never be excavated, explains Geber.
Remarkably, the burial site inside the grounds of the Kilkenny workhouse was never consecrated and for some reason remained unknown. This is unique. This burial ground was completely unknown, it had been lost in local memory, he says. That is one of the most fascinating aspects of it.
Given the situation, authorisation was given to fully excavate and clear the site. Here was an unprecedented opportunity to study the remains before re-interrment, something that provided the possibility of a forensic analysis of the workhouse residents ...
(Excerpt) Read more at irishtimes.com ...
It no wonder why the Irish still detest the British, who ruled Ireland at the time.
Thank you for the post. Part of my family’s history and why we now live in America.
Makes as much sense as blacks hating whites for slavery over 125 years ago.
May the Lord bless your family, and I am glad that they were able to make new lives in America.
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