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Morris, Samuel D.
Autograph Letter Signed February 17, 1847 to his son, Elliston Morris, West town Boarding School

quarto, 3 ½ pages, plus stamp-less address leaf, neatly inscribed in ink, very good.

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An interesting letter with content regarding the Great Famine or as it has been called, usually outside of Ireland, The Potato Famine. The famine, which claimed about one million lives and induced a million more to emigrate from Ireland, lasted from 1845-1849. The worst year of the famine, 1847, was known as “Black 47”.


      “… whilst multitudes are homeless, houseless and literally famishing for lack of food – companion of my seat in the West Chester Car, appeared to be an Irish Emigrant who said he resided near Boraugh, and that he was on his way to Philada in order to remit Fifty Dolls. to his sister in consequence of the extremes of misery which abounded in Ireland to that extent as he informed me, the starving people would resort to the Poor Houses in order to secure coffins for their burial when dead, but so great is the distress it was decided rather that their burial should be cut off indeed by way of preserving their inadequate means for benefitting the survivors – whose poverty was so excessive that after selling the blanket by which they were covered, some of the poor creatures would next dispose of their kettle, and then their skillet to procure a little food …”