The Louisburgh/Clinton Connection recounts the suffering and harassment the early emigrants from Louisburgh endured on their journey through Ireland to Liverpool, in order to get a passage to America or Canada, and onward to their final destination. Having survived a sea journey or sometimes up to 6 weeks, often without sufficient food, water and proper sanitary facilities, these early immigrants arrived mostly in Canada, with countless suffering from cholera, typhus, malnutrition, or other diseases. They were immediately put into quarantine but a large number did not survive here in spite of the devoted care and attention given to them. Many died on board ship especially in the late 1840's and early 1850's and were buried with little ceremony at sea. Those free of disease were allowed to continue their journey on "The Immigrant Trail" through the New England states, to their pre-planned destinations, which for a large number was Clinton and the other industrial towns of Massachusetts, a journey that also took its toll on the old and weak.
An analysis is made of 4 popular Louisburgh surnames showing their influx and decline in Clinton between 1972 and 1992 and a similar analysis is made of their influx in 3 major manufacturing industries in Clinton from 1882 until the Depression when the factories closed in the early 1930's. The influence these early emigrants had on the Catholic church and many of the clergy past and present who were associated with the church are recorded. The appendices with over 2000 names of Louisburgh emigrants to America has records dating back to 1843, but principally deals with emigrants from 1892 to 1925 and focuses on the following: (1) those emigrants boarding ship at Queenstown for Boston and (2) those boarding ship at Liverpool and Queenstown for New York. There are instances where the final destination is not recorded for some emigrants as they were not recorded on the ships manifest and also due to the excessive amount of time required in checking the ships' manifests.
Edward Gill is a retired Civil Engineer. He was born in Louisburgh Co. Mayo and educated in Louisburgh and Westport and obtained a Bachelor of Engineering Degree in Galway University. He worked for some years in Ontario, Canada and also in Boston, Massachusetts. It was here and in the surrounding towns especially Clinton, that his interest in Louisburgh immigration was acquired. Clinton in particular was of great interest to him, not least because his mother as well as his aunts, uncles, grand uncles and grand aunts worked there in the late 1800's and early 1900's but because on his many visits to his relaives in Clinton, he was continuously surrounded by descendents of Louisburgh emigrants, anxious to discuss old times in Louisburgh and to examine relationships. He returned to England but continued his research through the many contacts he had made in America, where he revisited on a number of occasions to further his research. He is a member fo the Irish Genealogical Society International, of St. Paul, Minnesota and his informative article on "Early Irish Settlers in the State of Michigan" appeared in the Society's journal "The Septs" in Oct. 2001. He is currently researching Louisburgh emigrants to various states in America and also in Canada.