Short Commons

I was about departing for Galway, in hopes of finding some money in the post-office, which was to be sent there from Urlingford. This money was to come from America to Urlingford; I had but five shillings before the sixpence was paid, and the distance to Galway was more than seventy miles. On this four and sixpence I must sleep, and eat, and ride, unless I should walk. Should I not meet my money at Galway, I must walk back, making one hundred and fifty miles or more.

Ireland’s Welome to the Stranger is one of the best accounts of Irish social conditions, customs, quirks and habits that you could wish for. The author, Mrs Asenath Nicholson, was an American widow who travelled extensively in Ireland on the eve of the Great Famine and meticulously observed the Irish peasantry at work and play, as well as noting their living conditions and diet. The book is also available from Kindle.