the Jeanie Johnston • A Short History
The remarkable story of the Jeanie Johnston began with her maiden voyage from Quebec on April 24, 1848 with 193 emigrants on board. It was set aganst the backdrop of life in Ireland during the great famine or the great hunger. Faced with the spectre of disease, starvation, eviction & death, many people were forced to leave their native land & come to America.
Because of disease & the horrible living conditions on the ship, many passengers died on the two month voyage. One ship, the Jeanie Johnston, in 17 voyages across the Atlantic, did not lose a single passenger. A vital reason for the survival rate is due to the direction & compassion of Nicholas Donovan (kind-hearted owner), Captain James Attridge & Dr. Richard Blennerhassett (resident medical doctor).
To honor the ship & the millions of Irish who immigrated to America, there was a 4 day celebration during the ship's visit to Bristol from June 26 to June 30, 2003.
There were many activities that day. The public enjoyed tours of the ship & the ship's museum, genealogy research, Irish entertainment & Irish Cultural activities.
For more information on this remarkable ship and its incredible journey, read more about the history of the Jeanie Johnston here.
Photos from the voyage of the Great Famine Ship upon its arrival at Riverfront Park in Bristol, PA
the JEANIE JOHNSTON's 2003 Voyage
The Story of a proud Irish Emigrant Ship this story is cited from the official website of the Jeanie Johnston
A step aboard the Jeanie Johnston is a step towards understanding the daunting experience of the millions of people who crossed the Atlantic in tall ships, seeking survival and hope in the “New World” of North America.
This ship is an accurate replica of the original Jeanie Johnston, which sailed between Tralee in Co. Kerry and North America between 1847 and 1855 [the time of "an Gorta Mór", the Great Famine]. During that time it carried 2,500 people on the seven week journey – and despite the hardships and risks, no lives were lost on any of its trips.
The replica gives a vivid sense of the challenges faced by emigrants as they fled from poverty and famine and were thrown together with strangers in cramped conditions, braving a 3,000 mile voyage buffeted by gales and harsh seas.
The ship is is docked at Custom House Quay in Dublin’s city centre and is OPEN FOR VISITORS with guided tours being conducted daily.