Irish Hunger Memorial

Yellow Flag Iris, Burnet Rose and Cross-leaved Heath cling to the hillside that is the Irish Hunger Memorial in lower Manhattan. It's transcending to climb this half-acre of country side which includes the foundation of designer Brian Tolle's ancestral stone cottage transported from County Mayo, Ireland—"an expression of solidarity to those who left from those who stayed behind."  

Tolle memorializes the loss of 1.5 million Irish during the Great Famine of 1845-52 brought on by the potato blight and a host of complex political issues. The famine took roughly 20% of the population of Ireland and, by 1890, 40% of the Irish population was living abroad.

From the top of the hillside—25 feet above Manhattan streets—one has a view of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island through which millions of Irish emigrated to the United States. This beautiful, feral landscape changes throughout the year —with dozens of hardy native Irish plants growing among the 32 stones representing each of Ireland's counties. If you are a Geocache fan, there is a great puzzle to solve in finding the capsule hidden here.

Vesey Street and North End Avenue.

Open 8am to 9pm between May 1st - October 31st, and from 8am to 6:45PM from November - April.

jane beck

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