From Publishers Weekly
During the winter of 1847-48-"Black '47"-when the potato famine ravaged Ireland, the town of Ballykilcline, County Roscommon, was hit hard. The problem "was above all about food, and therefore about land." Hopelessly behind in paying their rent, the tenant-farmers rebelled. Those who had taken advantage of an offer from their landlord, Major Mahon, and left for Canada perished en route. News of the disaster reached Ballykilcline and Mahon was murdered. Recriminations followed about "Papist plots" on the landlord's side met by stalwart resistance on the part of the tenants. This study of the Irish land system and the effects of the great famine shows how the land was divided; the influence of the "Gentlemen and the Squireens"; the hatred of the peasants for the "drivers"-the landlords' rent collectors and evicters; and the peasants' eventual emigration (paid for by the British crown) and their new lives in the United States. Scally is professor of history and director of the Glucksman Ireland House at New York University. His account will be of particular interest to academicians. Illustrated.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to the
"The End of Hidden Ireland
opens a window on a lost world in the process of becoming lost. Robert James Scally combines the labor of an archivist with the speculative verve of an historian of mentalities."--The Washington Post
"Well written and well researched, a distinct contribution to the subject."--Kirkus Reviews
"Scally's book is compulsively readable, an intimate and humane portrait of a society on the brink of dissolution."--Kevin Whelan, Royal Irish Academy, Dublin
"A beautifully written, deeply researched work of historical investigation that makes an important contribution to a true accounting of the Irish past... His book is a revelation."--Peter A. Quinn, author of Banished Children of Eve