Potato Famine

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In this paper I will be talking about The great potato famine and it’s effects on Ireland. The great potato famine started in Ireland in the summer of 1845 and ended in 1852. It killed around 1 million people and forced over 2 million people to move out of Ireland. The potato was their main food source, so starvation was a huge factor. When the potatoes became infected people started to get what was called the “Famine Fever”. To better understand this I will also be explaining the history of Ireland along with the history of the potato. The Effects of the famine permanently changed Ireland’s -demographic, political and cultural landscape.

The Potato blight did not originate in Ireland. It was discovered in the USA in 1843 and in Canada in 1844. It is thought to have travelled to Europe on trade ships that lead to the blight in Europe and then in 1845 in Ireland. People first thought that the famine was caused by underground volcanoes or static electricity, but almost 40 years later scientists discovered that it was caused by an infestant called, Phytophthora. Phytophthora is a fungus that caused mildew to take over the potato making them basically turn to rotten curled up mush within a few days after the potato was dug up from the ground.

The famine fever caused symptoms such as dysentery, scurvy, typhus, and many infestations of lice. Like I mentioned earlier, the famine killed more than 1 million people. If people didn’t die with the fever they still had the chance of dying of starvation because Ireland really depended on the potato. Before the famine the Irish would eat potatoes with all three meals. Within only five years the population in Ireland was reduced by a quarter. The famine fever wasn’t the only thing k...

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...ded up working as tenants to the landlords. After the famine about 4.5 million people left to the United states because they didn’t think they would ever get their independence back from the English.

This is a song that was written by a man named Brendon Graham. The song talks about all the pain brought on by the great potato faimine.

In this paper I provided information on the great potato famine and the devastation it caused. Even after the great potato famine things in Ireland were still not great. After doing research on the great potato famine in Ireland I find it interesting that Notre Dame adopted the name “The Fighting Irish” for their college football team because it is a good representation of how the Irish fought through the famine. I Found it interesting to read that the effects of the famine can be traced to people of the Irish nationality today.

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