This is a reconstruction of the original Dunbrody , which was built in 1845 in Quebec. She was commissioned along with seven sister ships by ‘William Graves & Son’, a merchant family from New Ross. Designed as a cargo vessel the Dunbrody’s mainly transported timber from Canada, cotton from the southern states of the U.S.A. and guano from Peru. Famine struck Ireland in 1845, the year of the Donbrody’s launch. With the potato crop failing and food prices soaring, widespread starvation soon forced more than a million people to flee the country. Such was the demand that there were not enough passenger ships to carry them all. Merchants such as Graves seized the opportunity to fit out their cargo vessels with bunks to meet the extra demand. Between 1845 and 1851 the Dunbrody carried thousands of emigrants to North America. Lax regulation allowed a ship the size of the Dunbrody to carry anywhere from 160 passengers to over 300. In 1847 she is recorded as carrying 313 passengers to Quebec.
Location: Dunbrody Famine Ship, New Ross, County Wexford, Eire, Irish Republic