In the Spring of 1849, a coffin-ship called the Hannah, carrying 180 Irish emigrants fleeing Ireland's potato famine, hit an ice reef in the strait near Cape Ray, off the coast of Newfoundland. The captain, a 23 year-old Englishman, took flight in the only lifeboat, leaving his passengers to either drown or freeze to death. Seventeen hours later, the survivors were rescued by another famine ship, the Nicaragua.
Through the film, you can follow Canadian descendant Tom Murphy and his mother Jane on their emotional quest to discover how their Irish ancestors, Bridget and John Murphy, managed to survive both starvation and shipwreck to finally build a new life in the green fields of Canada.
Famine and Shipwreck, an Irish Odyssey was shot in Ireland, Quebec, Ontario and off the coast of Prince Edward Island, in 2010. It never would have been possible without the incredible efforts of Paddy Murphy from Ontario, who traced his genealogy back to his Irish roots in South Armagh, Ireland.
Famine and Shipwreck, an Irish Odyssey is a Galafilm production, produced in association with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and Radio-Canada, with the financial participation of the Canadian Media Fund, the Quebec tax credit and the Federal tax credit, and developed with the financial participation of the SODEC.
You can watch the YouTube video at http://youtu.be/VcU6xmqHjoQ or click on the image below.
My thanks to newsletter reader Dan Mark for telling me about this fascinating video.