The military story of the Sackets Harbor Battlefield Site is widely known, but the lives of those who served there as non-combatants are less well known. Nora Hunt and Clara Hastings led quite different lives from the Commandant’s family at the Navy Yard in 1860. Their experiences coincide with other young Irish female immigrant domestics in the northeast United States, as Margaret Lynch-Brennan relates through her research.
Lynch-Brennan presents: The Irish Bridget: Irish Immigrant Women in Domestic Service in America, 1840-1930 on Thursday July 7 at 7:30pm in the site’s picnic pavilion. This free program from the New York Council for the Humanities is made possible through the Public Scholars program, supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Using photographs and personal letters, Lynch-Brennan illustrates these immigrant women’s lives, discussing their work, social life, and impact on Irish-American heritage. The author also explores the relevance of their lives today, where domestic service is filled by female immigrants, and immigration is seen as controversial.
Dr. Margaret Lynch-Brennan earned a Ph.D. in American History from the University at Albany, and was employed at the NYS Education Department. She has taught from the middle school through graduate school levels.
An author’s reception at 6:30 pm is by pre-paid $20 per-person reservation, made by July 1. Traditional Irish refreshments and music welcome Peggy to Sackets Harbor. To register call (315) 646- 3634 or email Constance.Barone@parks.ny.gov.
On Saturday, July 9 the site’s weekly “Family Fun with History” features Irish cultural heritage hands-on activities from 10 am to 4 pm.
The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees 180 state parks and 35 historic sites, which are visited by 65 million people annually. A recent study found that New York State Parks generates $1.9 billion in economic activity annually and supports 20,000 jobs. For more information on any of these recreation areas, call (518) 474-0456 or click here.