Trying to Find the Irish in FITZGERALD

On the eve of the Civil War, there were 1.6 million Irish born people in the United States (about 6% of the white population).  Within that 6% of Irish born, 11% lived in the SouthEastern U.S. mostly concentrated in the 5 cities of New Orleans, Wilmington, Baltimore, Louisville and Saint Louis. That is according to Kerby A. Miller’s interesting (and  a bit lengthy) paper “Immigrants and Identities in the Old South” 1997,

In 1860 Georgia’s population included 6000 Irish Immigrants or just a mere 1.1% of the state’s inhabitants.  It is assumed that most of these emigrated from Ireland because of the great famine (1845-1852) when a potato blight destroyed their food supply.  About a million people died and a million emigrated.

art by James Mahoney

art by James Mahoney

Elizabeth FITZGERALD was born Feb 1870 in GA.  She claims that her father and mother were both Irish born.  This is learned from the 1900 Federal Census of Summerville, Richmond County, GA when Elizabeth was married to William R . BARKER and had two children of her own.  Here is the mystery:   we don’t know the names of her parents.  There are clues but nothing conclusive yet.  Detectives are needed and we encourage your research on this line.

Elizabeth FITZGERALD  was the paternal grandmother of Evelyn Roberta BARKER DEAN.

Enjoy your potatoes.

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One comment on “Trying to Find the Irish in FITZGERALD

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