Voyage of the Erin go Bragh

7th February 1862
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The Erin go Bragh was one of 13 ships which transported people from Ireland to Australia under the Queensland Immigration Scheme. The QIS was established by Bishop James Quinn and assisted by Father Patrick Dunne with the aim of assisting Irish immigrants to make the arduous journey to Australia where it was hoped that they could start a new life of prosperity. 

The Erin go Bragh was the first ship to make the journey as part of the scheme. It's first voyage departed Queenstown (now Cobh, Co. Cork) on the 7th of February 1862. Though no voyage to far away Australia was without its difficulties, this journey in particular was marked by hardship and suffering. The journey which normally took between 12 and 13 weeks ended up taking an agonising 25 weeks. This was due to poor weather conditions which meant they were either sat waiting for a wind or else suffering under severe headwinds. To add further issues, the ship sprung a leak which had to be constantly pumped out until they reached Australia. There was also a great deal of sickness on board with 54 passengers losing their lives on the journey. 

 

This Chronicle is created with thanks to James Tolhurst for his research and contributions.

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