150th Anniversary

In 1997, Ireland and the countries of the Irish Diaspora around the world marked the 150th anniversary of the worst year of the Famine. In Canada, the Federal Government declared Grosse Isle a National Park and a permanent memorial to the Irish Famine migrants who died and were buried on the Island when it served as a quarantine station. A beautiful and thoughtful memorial was erected on Grosse Isle by Parks Canada to the Irish Famine migrants; unveiled in 1997 by Irish President Mary Robinson. Previously, in 1907, an Irish High Cross Monument was erected on the highest point of land on the Island by the American branch of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, as their memorial to Irish Famine Immigrants

In Toronto, on October 1st, a commemorative plaque was erected at Metro Hall, at the corner of King and John Street, adjacent to the site of the former Emigrant Hospital. Throughout Ireland there was a collective grieving for the massive loss of life from starvation and disease. Many significant memorials, parks and public sculptures were erected and dedicated during the course of 1997.