Westport House, Mayo | An Gorta Mór

Ireland was divided into only 10,000 estates although the population was close to 9 million in the 19th century. Many landlords ruthlessly evicted thousands of Irish people from their vast grounds during the famine. However Westport house was one of the few exceptions. George, the 3rd Marquess inherited the house in 1845. The House was closed and with no rents forthcoming, he borrowed where he could, spending £50,000 of his own money to alleviate the suffering of the tenants. With the guidance of his mother, Hesther Catherine, he imported cargoes of meal to Westport Quay and sub-vented the local workhouse. He wrote to the British Government demanding that they do more to help the victims. In 1854, he was offered the Order of St. Patrick. Disillusioned by England’s Irish policy, the 3rd Marquess wrote “ I have no desire for the honour.” Taken from The Truth Behind The Irish Famine, 100 images, 472 eye witness quotes: http://www.jerrymulvihill.com

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