Irish Immigration in America Essay

1737 Words Nov 13th, 2005 7 Pages
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American Military University

Journey to America
Story of the Irish in Antebellum America

HS101 - US History to 1877
William J. McMonigle - 3055083
Friday, October 28, 2005

When many think of the times of immigration, they tend to recall the Irish Immigration and with it comes the potato famine of the 1840s' however, they forget that immigrants from the Emerald Isle also poured into America during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The assimilation and immigration of the Irish has been difficult for each group that has passed through the gates of Ellis Island or South Boston. Like every group that came to America, the Irish were looked down upon; yet, in the face of discrimination,
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The city life gave the Irish a chance to continue to stay close to their families and communities, a chance to help one another out. This strong sense of belonging is evident in all Irish communities; the upper class would only try to help "their own" by giving them jobs or housing. The Irish did not only look to the streets for sanctuary, but also looked to a higher power. The most important community was that of the local church. For many, social events at the churches, such as dances and mixers, were a way for the Irish to unwind and relax. The churches and communities helped the families of the Irish grow and provided a backbone for the next hundred years.

The improving times were not just a change for American, but also for the Irish. The improvement of the economic status of the Irish Americans helped boost family lift and esprit. Most Irish American families when first arriving in America had little or no money, thus forcing them to settle in the urban centers of the Northeast. Within the cities, families were close and revolved around the church, where they practiced catholic views and preaching against contraception; therefore, many Irish Catholics had very large families. Consequently, the economic rise of the Irish immigrants provided families with the money to feed and clothe their large families. In addition, many Irish Americans could now afford to send their children to parish schools, something many could not do while oppressed in

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