The famous Irish diaspora: millions of people have left these shores over the past four centuries, fleeing occupation, famine, or simply out of economic necessity. Today, their descendants number in tens of millions in Britain, France, Austria, Spain, the rest of continental Europe and America. And today, in better times, you might find yourself back here, in search of your roots. If you've got Irish blood in you, chances are that somewhere along the family tree is a branch that sprouted leaves in Galway. If not, then just by talking to the locals, you'll get a sense of what it must have been like to leave home in search of a new world across the Atlantic.
The Galway Family History Society in the west, or the Woodford East Galway Family Society can help you with enquiries. But to those who left, never to return, the world owes a debt of gratitude, wherever Irish people contributed to the burgeoning nations of the late nineteenth century. Their stories are a part of all of us.