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My New Life in America - Fiona Devlin

  • Irish Famine

    Irish Famine
    Hi! My name is Fiona Devlin and I am 14 years old. I live in Ireland with my mother and father. In 1879, my family experienced the Irish Potato Famine. Luckily, we didn't experience any disease in my family, but we loss alot money and we had little food. We couldn't sell or eat potatos. My father had little business and had little food to put on the table. Many Irish people are emmigrating from Ireland to America, where there is no disease and they can grow potatos on the land!
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    Immigration to the Unites States: Fiona Devlin

  • We Immigrate to America

    We Immigrate to America
    My family and I were losing money, we had little food everyday, and the disease was breaking out all over Ireland. So my mother and father decided to immigrate to America for a better life. I protested against them, I didn't want to leave the lush feilds of Ireland. But, I knew I had no choice so we got on a steamboat and traveled across the Atlantic Ocean. We travelled as steerage class and we were stuffed in a room with hundreds of other people. Mother got very ill and weak on the journey.
  • We Arrive in New York, New York!

    We Arrive in New York, New York!
    We finally arrived in New York city after a three week journey across the Atlantic Ocean. We arrived at Castle Clinton in New York City and went through inspection to clear us into the United States. I was terrified. There were many people at Castle Clinton along with us, and I feared I would get lost. I speak Gaelic so I did not understnad what the scary men were saying. Father was educated in English, so he translated. Thankfully, we all made it through inspection.
  • Start A Life In New York

    Start A Life In New York
    New York city was very busy and crowded. I was not used to the many buildings that lined the streets on the city. We went to many places to get work and shelter but none would take us in becuase we were Irish. We met a Irish man, that gave father and me a job & shelter Mother was still ill from the journey so I work insted. Father got a job at a factory and I got a job as a clothes washer. The women there were very kind and helped me learn English. I earned three dollars a week, it was very low.
  • Homestead Act Saves Our Lives!

    Homestead Act Saves Our Lives!
    Father and I were working every day, and we were not receving much pay. We had to spend our money on supplies and the rent, but we soon ran out of money so we were kicked out of our apartment. Father and me still worked to pay for food but it was terrible. Father then heard about the Homested Act. It guarenteed land if you obeyed the rules of the Act. Father decided we would go so we could have land we didn't have to pay for. Father also wanted to farm again, like we did in Ireland
  • Travelling on the Oregon Trail

    Travelling on the Oregon Trail
    Father, mother, and me travelled on the Oregon Trail. We were in wagon train of 25 wagons, with many other families. We travelled more than 1,500 miles. We travelled for nearly half a year through all kinds of weather. I became bored throughout the journey but I improved my English by talking to the other children.
  • We Arrive In Oregon!

    We Arrive In Oregon!
    Finally the journey was finished when we reached Oregon. Father and me were exhausted and so grateful to make it. We did not know, the winters would be so harsh and they put negative effects on my family. Unfortunately, Mother died on the journey for she had not fully recovered from the journey before. We buried her next to the trail, and it was a sad day for us all. We were estactic when we reached Oregon for we could restart our lives again.
  • We get our Land!

    We get our Land!
    Father applied for land under the Homestead Act, and wer received it. The land was everything we hoped for! It was green and grassy, and it had a river running through it. Father and me were excited to settle. We first built a house on the land. We chopped down trees on our property and built a wooden house. Father and me met some farmers in town and they gave us tips and seeds to grow crops on our land. Father and me plan to grow crops on our land to sell in the West.
  • Farming Troubles

    Farming Troubles
    Father and me , with the advice of neighboring farmers, try to plant seeds to grow crops. We planted the seeds for a week, but there was no sign there was growth. Father and me investigate and find that the soil is very rocky and dry. Father and me have to restart the seeding process . We have to take all the rocks out of the soil and water it to moisten it. Father and me lose money to pay for new seeds and time. The other farmers crops are already growing and will get most business this season.
  • Gold Finding

    Gold Finding
    In 1884, Mining began to become popular in the west. One day, Father and my land was invaded by many men. They were all trying to get to the river. The river goes through other properties and there had been a finding on gold. The men were miners, and they started to search the river gold. Many men were lucky and found pieces of gold. Father and me had no control, we were overpowered by the miners and they would not leave. We were in trouble.
  • We Receive Much Income

    We Receive Much Income
    Finally, after a few days of being invaded by miners. Father decided to address the situation. Father grabbed his shotgun and threatned the miners to leave. He told them if they payed a fee to mine on our land they could. Nearly 1/4 of the miners left but we received much income from the miners. Father himself went out into the river and was able to uncover some gold. He received nearly $2000 dollars for his findings. We earned much income from the miners and the gold.