This page was created by Ellen Rethwisch.  The last update was by Ben Deetz.

Star of the Sea : A Postcolonial/Postmodern Voyage into the Irish Famine

Northern Ireland

A famine memorial named the “Pauper’s Graveyard” (Cornagrade) is located in Eniskillen, Co. Fermanagh.  The artist who designed it was Eamonn O’Doherty and it was completed in 1996 after being commissioned by the Fermanagh District Council. The location is significant because it stands on the site of the main paupers’ graveyard of a workhouse in Enniskillen that operated during the Famine. Inscribed on a plague is an eerie cry for help from the past- a letter written from the Maguiresbridge relief committee on March 3, 1847 which reads: “We beg to direct the attention of the guardians to the shameless, indecent and dangerous piling of the dead paupers in the new ground.” While it doesn’t shy away from the brutal history of the area, it looks forward to the future with an optimistic hope for growth. The quote ““Allow the fertile crop of change to grow/ accept what is past/ embrace what is to come” serves to mollify the feelings evoked by the letter in the other plaque, and remind visitors to learn from the past so that we may grow and prosper in the future. 

Works Cited
Mark-Fitzgerald, Emily. "Irish Famine Memorials." Irish Famine Memorials. Wordpress, n.d. Web. 11 Feb. 2016.
Researcher/Writer: Ben Deetz
Technical Designers: Abbey Benson and Ellen Rethwisch

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