Irish Americans are unlike any other American citizens in the 21st century; however, life was not always easy for them. Irish immigrants faced prejudice, segregation, and racism upon entrance into the United States. Finding jobs and decent homes was next to impossible; therefore, most Irish lived in slums and were very poor.
Prejudice against Irish Americans was extreme to a point. Anyone who was Irish was considered “dirty, lazy, and stupid” ( ). Since such stereotypes were enforced, finding jobs was indeed a very difficult task for Irish workers. Signs hung in windows that read, “Irish need not apply” ( ). Irish men and women were forced to work in the dirties, most ridiculous conditions that were available. The ‘dual labor market’ was an issue because of these discriminations against the Irish. There were certain jobs that “normal” people could have, while there were others for Irish job-seekers.
Due to the lack of financial stability, as well as segregation, Irish Americans were forced to reside in filthy slums ( ). Irish settlers were often not allowed to live in town, or anywhere nice for that matter. It was not uncommon for two or three Irish families to share a run-down shack in the slums of the town. Sickness and filth caused early death to many Irishmen; their lives were terrible.
Additionally, segregation became an increasingly pressing issue amongst Irish immigrants in the United States. Nobody wanted to be around an Irishman; they were filthy and worthless. Irish settlers were taken advantage of and mistreated. After a while, the Irish began to willingly separate themselves from the rest of the population. “All major cities had their ‘Irishtown’ or ‘Shantytown’ where the Irish clung together” ( ).