Sunday, 6 September 2015

Images of Famine Walk in Ballyshannon on Heritage Week 2015

Script and photographs courtesy of Discover Ballyshannon whose site can be viewed on line at also on their facebook site.

Meeting point at the "Famine Orphan Girls' Memorial" at  Ballyshannon Workhouse. The only one of its type in Ireland. Anthony Begley (red jacket) welcomes part of gathering on behalf of Ballyshannon Regeneration Group and Afri who jointly organised the event. Ballyshannon workhouse is the  only complete workhouse in County Donegal.

The walk route on Sunday went up the Main Street, as would have been the "final journey" route of the Famine victims. Initially by wheelbarrow and later by horse and cart the bodies were taken via Main Street to Bishop Street where the burial site was accessed via the Stone steps still visible there. Map drawn by Barry Sweeny of the Regeneration Group.

Historian, Anthony Begley gave a great insight into the history of the graveyard. Though there are very few records relating to the times, Anthony had some amazing stories of a few individuals buried here. 

Waylon Gary White Deer (in centre of photo) of the Choctaw Indian Tribe and member of AFRI (Action from Ireland) said a few words here in the Famine graveyard. We had a poignant moments silence and laid a floral tribute at the memorial in the Famine graveyard.  St. Anne's clock and tower in the background.

 Aine and Paul of the Ballyshannon Regeneration Group kept a close eye on things... and made sure everyone was well looked after.

Here you can see the memorial placed here in 1995... and you can get a glimpse of the fantastic view over the Erne Estuary behind. The memorial was erected by the Donegal Association in New York  in conjunction with County Donegal Historical Society.

A  Local History Book suitable for those at Home and Away

"Ballyshannon. Genealogy and History" reveals newly researched history and genealogy of the town, extending as far as the Rossnowlagh, Cashelard, Corlea, Clyhore, Higginstown and Finner areas. Includes the parishes of Kilbarron and Magh Ene. It contains the full story of  The Green Lady which  was recently performed in Ballyshannon  to great acclaim. The genealogy material provides detailed guidelines for anyone tracing their roots in the area or anywhere in County Donegal or Ireland. The book contains 500 pages and is richly illustrated with stunning colour, aerial photography, original illustrations and rare photographs of the area not seen before. Available in Novel Idea, Museum and Local Hands in Ballyshannon and 4 Masters Bookshop Donegal Town.

Also available from Anthony Begley for postal enquiries email

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