I am still on the ship on my voyage across the Atlantic Ocean from Ireland. The trip has been unbearable. Do you know that they call this ship the “coffin ship”? I set sail almost 3 months ago. The compartment is 5ft high with two tiers of beds. The beds are so small you can’t roll over in them. The only air and light we get is through the hatch. The hatch can not be open during rough and stormy weather. The air has become filthy and foul as time passes. I think there has been more bad weather than good. I am starving the food is terrible and there is not enough clean water to go around. I am so tired and week this trip has been so long and exhausting. I am looking forward to the adventure that awaits me.
I arrived at port today. The New York port. It was sad but half the people that I set sail with died on the way. How sad for the families that thought they were coming to the land of opportunity.
I am arriving to the United States along with 1000’s of other Irish Immigrants. 75% of us are catholic. A good percent of us are planning to settle down on the East Coast. New York, Boston and Philadelphia. We do not have money to go any farther. A small number of prosperous merchants will be able to form communities in these cities but the most of us will be indentured servants. For the next three to seven years many of my friends and family will work for an employer in exchange for transportation, food, drink, clothing, lodging and other necessities.
Sorry it has been awhile since my last entry. Since I last wrote to you I have found out this is not as easy as I thought it would be. For the ones of us that did not want to be servants are having a very hard time finding a place to live and employment. The American is very prejudice they do not feel that we are good enough for proper housing, We have been clinging together in shantytowns. I am unable to find a work because of the...