Historical conference a great success

From left, back row: William Roulston (Ulster Historical Foundation), Tom Fleming (Garvagh Museum), Wilbert Patterson (Garvagh Museum), Brian Mitchell (Genealogist, Derry & Strabane Council), Keith Beattie. Seated: Linde Lunney (Royal Irish Academy) and Alison McCaughan (Dunboe'Presbyterian Church).
From left, back row: William Roulston (Ulster Historical Foundation), Tom Fleming (Garvagh Museum), Wilbert Patterson (Garvagh Museum), Brian Mitchell (Genealogist, Derry & Strabane Council), Keith Beattie. Seated: Linde Lunney (Royal Irish Academy) and Alison McCaughan (Dunboe'Presbyterian Church).

Over 100 people recently attended a successful conference in Garvagh which explored the background to the transatlantic migration of upwards of 100 local families in the eighteenth century.

“1718: Penal Laws, Poverty & Migration” was organised by Garvagh Museum, in association with the Ulster Historical Foundation, and featured a series of talks by some of the foremost experts in that period. The audience included genealogists, members of local history groups and young and old from across Northern Ireland, all wanting to know more about the fascinating events which resulted in so many people leaving their homes and families to travel to America.

Following a morning of talks, a large number of the delegates spent an enjoyable afternoon taking a tour of Garvagh Museum led by some of the experienced and entertaining volunteer guides.

Tom Fleming, Chairman of the Garvagh Museum, said “We are delighted that such a large and enthusiastic crowd came to Garvagh today to take part in our conference. The story of 1718 has important links to the history of our community. We were determined to commemorate the anniversary and help people understand the tragic reasons why such a large proportion of our local Presbyterian congregation left on this journey to the New World. On behalf of Garvagh Museum,

“I would like to thank everyone who contributed, in particular Dr William Roulston and the Ulster Historical Foundation, the excellent speakers, the Garvagh Community building for hosting the conference, all our wonderful volunteers and the financial support of Causeway

Coast & Glens Borough Council”.