Los descendientes del Dresden: May 2014 Google+

Friday, 30 May 2014

McCarthy Family

John McCarthy nació en 1887 en Irlanda y murió en Argentina. Su hermano, Timoteo, nació en Argentina, vivió en Irlanda y murió a bordo de un barco de la marina mercante británica, cerca de las costas mediterráneas de Egipto. Sus nietos respectivamente, Jorge Makarte y Peter Mulvany, luego de más de 100 años, hoy se conocen por primera vez y se enfrentan a una barrera cultural que no pueden franquear: el idioma. Jorge nunca habló inglés y Peter jamás el español.
Peter vino de visita antes de entrar al quirófano, se dijo a si mismo y a su familia, que era ahora o nunca. No sabe cómo va salir de la operación. Lo que si sabe es que este gran paso que él está dando quede para las generaciones que vienen y que puedan encontrar en Argentina, la tierra de sus ancestros.
Este es uno de los casos curiosos que este documental está poniendo en mi camino.
La historia de esta familia es increible. Está relacionada incluso con la causa revolucionaria nacionalista y el nombre de John McCarthy figura entre la lista de sospechosos de integrar los inicios de Sinn Féin. También con héroes de la II Guerra Mundial.
Esta foto muestra el momento del encuentro: Peter Mulvany (de barba a la izquierda de la foto) con Jorge Makarte (a la derecha). Son primos de segundo grado que se encuentran por primera vez. Este encuentro marca el primero en las familias de cada uno después de que sus abuelos se separaran en 1905.


John McCarthy was born in 1887 in Ireland and died in Argentina around 1953. His brother, Timothy, was born in Argentina, and at a very young age went to live to Ireland. He died on board a ship in the British merchant marine, near the Mediterranean coast of Egypt. His grandchildren respectively, Jorge Makarte (grandson of John) and Peter Mulvany (grandson of Timothy), they finaly known each other for the first time. They face a cultural barrier that they cannot cross: the language. Jorge Peter never spoke English and Peter never spoke Spanish.
Peter was facing a surgery so he said to himself and to his family that was now or never. This was a very big step that they both are giving for them and also for the next generations to come. Now both families know the existence of each other.
This is one of the curious cases this documentary is getting in my way. The story of this family is incredible. It is related even with the nationalist revolutionary cause and the name of John McCarthy is among the list of suspects to integrate early Sinn Féin. Also with heroes of the Second World War (Patricio, other brother of Timothy and John, was the first Argentine killed in action in during World War II).

This photo shows the moment of encounter: Peter Mulvany (beard to the left of the photo) with Jorge Makarte (right). They are cousins ​​in second grade that are knowing each other for the first time. This was the first meeting that both families have since their grandparents were separated in 1905.




1. McCarthy's Family - SS Dresden Records

MC CARTHY, MARY - (30 y/o), Married, Housekeeper
MC CARTHY, JOHN - (29 y/o), Married, Labourer
MC CARTHY, JEREMIAH - (8 y/o), Single
MC CARTHY, MARY - (6 y/o), Single
MC CARTHY, CORNELIUS - (4 y/o), Single
MC CARTHY, ANNIE - (2 y/o), Single
MC CARTHY, JOHN - (1 y/o), Single

2. McCarthy at Balcarce (Buenos Aires Province) - Argentina Census 1895

The family has been recorded as Makart (line nº12)

Argentine Census 1895 - Balcarce Prov. Buenos Aires

Argentine Census 1895 - Balcarce, Prov. Buenos Aires

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Pearce Family

Anne me contactó hace un par de años atrás para contarme una historia y saber si teníamos algo en común.
La historia que me contó es la que sigue a continuación. Es la historia de su abuel Daisy May Pearce, la chiquita que cuando vino en el Dresden con sus padres, tenía tan solo 6 meses.
Esta es la historia:

Daisy May Asher (nee Pearce) 1888-1962 - by Anne Miles

Daisy May Pearce was born in Southampton, England on 5th August 1888. Her birth was registered by her mother Mary Jane Pearce (nee Beck) in Southampton on 7th September 1888; her father’s name was James Pearce and his profession is recorded as a bricklayer (journeyman) i.e. a bricklayer who travels from job to job. So far I have been unable to trace their marriage and as a result I know nothing about James at all.
Previous to Daisy’s birth there is a record of a passport number 15360 being issued to a J Pierce on 23rd July 1888. Mary Jane did not obtain her passport until 10th August, 5 days after Daisy was born. Unfortunately these passports have never been found.
The next occasion that records their movements is the passenger list from the SS Dresden as they arrived in Argentina on 15th February 1889. The family are recorded departing from Queenstown (now known as Cork), Southern Ireland and are logged as English. James’ profession is registered as a bricklayer and his age is 44. Mary Jane is recorded as a dairy maid and is 30; Daisy was by now 6 months old. Mary Jane Beck was actually born on 31st August 1861 in Arnewood, Hordle, Hampshire so her true age would have been 26, but maybe they were very aware of their age difference, or, their ages were just recorded incorrectly.
The story that was passed down the family was that James went to Argentina alone and Mary Jane and Daisy followed out later. The passenger list disproves this but it is possible that James travelled alone to Queenstown to arrange their trip or visited relatives prior to the others arriving later; this would account for his obtaining his passport earlier in the year.
What happened to them in Argentina is a mystery.

Twenty months later on 23rd November 1890 my grandmother, Daisy May Pearce, was baptised by her grandparents at their local parish church in Hordle, Hampshire. Her mother Mary Jane had arrived back in England, reputedly having been widowed whilst in Argentina although I still have been unable to find any record of James’ death. She is believed to have earned enough money to pay for their passage back home to England. To date I cannot find any evidence of their return voyage so do not know when they left Argentina and arrived back in England. A few months after Daisy was baptised Mary Jane had a son, Harry on 10th March 1891; James Pearce (deceased) is recorded as his father on the birth certificate. Harry would have been conceived around June 1890 so if he was James’ son, James would have died sometime between June 1890 and November 1890 when Daisy was baptised and Mary Jane and Daisy would have returned from Argentina sometime between these dates also. However the family believed that Harry was illegitimate and was the son of a member of the house that Mary Jane worked at as a domestic servant after her return. This theory could be proved or disproved if we could find out when she returned to England.
The fact that is certain is that on her return Daisy May was left with her maternal grandparents, Stephen and Jane Beck (nee Warne), for them to bring up; they lived in the small village of Hordle that borders on the New Forest in Hampshire.
Mary Jane moved to Pennington, Hampshire in with her sister, Geraldine Gates, her husband, 5 children and her maternal grandmother, Ann Warne. This was where she gave birth to Harry and worked nearby as a domestic servant. In May 1893 she married a Mark James in Bournemouth where she lived for the rest of her life. She had another child in 1901 with Mark, this time a girl. To the best of my knowledge she never saw Daisy May again until Mary Jane was very ill in 1930s when Daisy visited her in Bournemouth with her own daughter, my mother, Joyce.
What became of Daisy? She had a good life. Her grandparents were kind and gentle, although not rich. Stephen was a garden labourer and a sexton of Hordle Parish Church; he was known to enjoy a glass of beer, fortunately the horse knew its own way home from the pub! Jane had to be very careful that Stephen did not set fire to the thatched roof of the cottage when he got home as he was inclined to put his pipe, still alight, up on a high ledge in the porch! Jane was a very caring woman; she would turn out, no matter what time of day or night, to help either deliver a baby or lay out the dead. She used the horse and trap to get around and Daisy would recount how one night when going to help deliver a baby my great, great grandmother was forced into a ditch by a horse drawn carriage which disappeared as it went past! Jane was not the sort of woman who believed in ghosts!
I always called Daisy, my grandmother, ‘gran’ however she would tell me how her grandmother would tell her off if she called her ‘gran’; she would say to her “Daisy May Pearce, the Lord made the day long enough for you to say grandmother.”
When Daisy arrived to live with her grandparents, of their seven children, only one 20 year old son, one of Daisy’s uncles, was still living at home with them. Ten years later when she was 12, her uncle was no longer there but Daisy’s maternal great grandmother, Ann Warne, now aged 92 was living with her daughter Jane. They also had a boarder staying.
Daisy was very good at needlework and won a prize for it at school. This helped her to get a position at a girl’s private boarding school in New Milton when she was 14; she was employed to do the repairs to the pupil’s clothes. It was here that she met a nice young man called Frank Asher who delivered the milk to the school. The school’s cook did her best to stop them from seeing each other but love finds it own way!
Jane, Daisy’s grandmother became ill in 1910 and desperately wanted to see Daisy married and settled before she died. Daisy, now 22 and Frank, 30, would have preferred to wait a little longer but in the end got married on 12th November 1910 at Hordle Parish Church. Jane was buried on 20th December 1910 aged 78, happy to have seen her much loved granddaughter happily married. Stephen, Daisy’s grandfather died the next year at 79 and was buried on 1st April 1911.
Daisy and Frank started their married life in a small cottage in Hordle. By the time their first son, Percy Frank Asher known as Perce was born in 1913 they were living in a farm cottage in Barnham in Sussex. Frank was a dairyman, he knew all his cows by name and part of his job was delivering the milk too. Five years later their second son was born who they called James Stephen, known as Jim, followed by daughters, Hilda and Eva. Ethel Joyce, known as Joyce, was born at a small village in Sussex called Henfield as Frank had moved to yet another farm, again as a dairyman.
It was here that one day Perce arrived home from school at 9 years old with a badly bruised knee from playing football. These were days when there was no National Health Service and seeing a doctor was expensive so Daisy dressed the bruise with bread poultice. A day later it was worse so Daisy took him to the doctor who told her to continue with the treatment and it would be fine. When Perce started to limp, the doctor still said it would be alright. Eventually Daisy took Perce to the children’s hospital at Brighton, even though a referral letter from a doctor was needed and her doctor refused to write one, still insisting it would be fine in time. Fortunately, as they reached reception, a nursing sister came along and saw his knee and she immediately arranged for a consultant to see him. The consultant wanted to know why he had not been earlier! The doctor at Henfield retired shortly afterwards. The outcome might have been far worse if Daisy had not been such a determined woman.
Perce was kept in hospital where they tried to disperse the bruise. He underwent six operations but eventually they had to amputate the leg, leaving just a small stump. Perce was fitted with an artificial leg at Roehampton Hospital in London at a cost of £50; a fortune in those days. As Perce was only nine he kept growing to over 6 foot so he regularly had to have new artificial legs at great expense but somehow Daisy and Frank always managed to afford it.
It was a year after Perce had had this accident that my mother, Joyce was born; now Daisy had three girls under 3 and Perce had temporary paralysis in the arms due to using his crutches and as a result, he was unable to feed himself. Life must have been very hard for a while.
Perce grew up and became a successful business man, running his own cobblers shop (shoe repairing) in Sussex, he married Rose and they had two sons, David and Gordon.
Jim became a market gardener in Hampshire and, after having married Dora, had two children Michael and Elizabeth.
Hilda and Eva were in the Auxiliary Territorial Service during the war where they met and married their husbands, Jim and Hughie. Hilda went on to have four children, Susan, Philip, Sheila and John, and they lived in Sheffield until they moved back to Sussex; likewise Eva had two sons, Frank and Hughie and they lived in the home country of her husband, Scotland.
Joyce, my mother became a nurse during the war and met my father, Les True as the war ended. They married and had three daughters, myself, Anne, and my sisters, Linda and Sylvia. We moved quite a bit due to my father’s job; we moved from Salisbury, Wiltshire to Bedford then onto Cyprus and back to Buckinghamshire. I often wondered if James’ and Mary Jane’s nomadic genes had been passed to my mother!
Frank died 1944 after an appendicitis operation due to a blood clot, leaving Daisy May to find a job as a housekeeper to two bachelors in Horsham. They were very kind to her and treated her like one of the family; she stayed with them for the rest of her life.
Whilst we were in Cyprus, Daisy May became very ill with cancer. She had several operations but eventually died on 28th May 1962, aged 73. I was 13 and last saw her when I was aged 11. I remember her as being a very gentle, kind lady; very tall and upright with the most beautiful thick, long grey hair which she would tie up in a bun during the day then take down at night to brush. I have learnt so much about her start in life that now I marvel at the fact that she, a small, helpless, 6 month old baby, survived the ‘Dresden Affair’.

Friday, 23 May 2014

News - Buckley O'Meara & the depart from Queenstwon

In January 25th 1889, the steamship SS Dresden was moored in the Queenstown port (actual Cobh port, Co. Cork), preparing for his inaugural voyage to the Argentine.
The SS Dresden was a ship from the North German Lloyd, especialy designed for the immigrant transportation. It was contracted by the Argentine Government of those days (Juarez Celman administration - Quirno Costa. Minister of Foreign Affair) for bringring immigrants in order to populate the nation.
The goodbye at the Queenstown port was great. Hundreds of people in the streets and houses of the creek, shaking their handkerchiefs, plenty of joy and wishing good auguries to the immigrants.
On board, an enthusiastic toast, was given in honor to the Argentine Republic (the Promised Land), and to the Argentine Commissioner of the Immigration Department, Mr. Samuel Navarro. From the wharf, strongs shouts of joy of the immigrants could be listened.
During those days, Mr. Buckley O'Meara, the Argentine Immigration Agent in Dublin, sent a letter to anglo-parlant's comunity newspaper, The Standard, in order to draw the attention of estancieros and employers of labour to the departure from Ireland to Buenos Ayres in the SS Dresden, of about 250 irish families, composed of the best of the agricultural, labourin and artisan classes.
He added that those immigrants have "all been chosen with great care regarding characters and suitablility to emigrate to the Republic. To a colony each family would be a cheap acquisition at 100 pounds each".


Letter from Mr. O'Meara to the Editor of local newspaper The Standard advising the arrival of 250 families on board the SS Dresden.

Published Feb. 10th 1889 - The Standard
9 Lower Sackville Street, Dublin, January 7th
To the Editor of The Standard:
Dear Sir,
Kindly allow me through the columns of The Standard to draw the attention of estancieros and all employers of labour to the departure from Ireland to Buenos Ayres, on the 22nd inst., in the SS Dresden, of about 250 irish families, composed of the best of the agricultural, labourin and artisan classes. Amongst these families the estanciero will find what has been a long-felt-want-good steady honest and hard-working men, who will till his land, turning over a furrow in good old English style; mind his sheep, after a few months, experience of the country’s ways, with far more care and inteligence than has hitherto been shown; and above all, those fortunate enough to secure one or two of these families can safely look forward to being well served for a number of years, and dispense with the worry of continually looking out for suitable servants. The wives and daughters of this families are cooks, parlour, house and diary mands, laundresses, and well up to other femanl country work. Respecting the artisans, the heads of the families and sons are skilled carpenters, blacksmiths, joiners, fitters, etc, etc, and not to be surprised at their trades.
They have all been chosen with great care regarding characters and suitablility to emigrate to the Republic. To a colony each family would be a cheap acquisition at 100 pounds each.
I am so pressed with work that I cannot afford to spare the time that this communication deserves; and before concluding can only again draw the attention of estancieros and all employers of labour who desire their work well done, with peace and happiness in the domestic circle, to come forward and engage the families they may want, as another chance may not offer itself.
Belive me dear Sir
Your obedient servant.

E. B. O’Meara

Letter from Mr. F. H. Mulhall, who went to Montevideo in order to see the immigrants before their arrived to Buenos Aires. He sent this letter to The Standard. He came on board the SS Dresden with Fr. Gaughren, and others.
Published Feb. 15th 1889 - The Standard

Montevideo, February 14th 1889
The Dresden has just arrived after a splendid trip of 19 days from Queenstown. When the emigrants were shipped all Cork turned out. The streets and house tope where crowded, and I gather from what I heard on board that the most enthusiastic cheers were given for “the Argentine Republic – The Promised Land”. Military and civil dignitaries and countless ladies crowded the house tops, and ladies waving their handkerchiefs came to the ship’s side and cheered Mr Navarro, whom thew warmly thanked for promoting the movement. In fact, I may safely say from what I hear, that the most unbounded enthusiasm and excitement prevailed. Loud shouts for the success of the emigrants were also indulged in.
There are 2000 on board: 1800 Irish and 200 English. There was room for more, and more were coming but for the authorities at Southampton who, when the vessel arrived, made it a point to declare that she would be overcrowded if any more emigrants were allowed to embark.
This is the first voyage of the Dresden which is a splendid ship. She was built by Mr. Worrasco, specially for emigrants and he has another in course of construction, 14 knots an hour.
The Dresden will leave tonight, probable at midnight.
The majority are agriculturists poor but steady and all of good character. They appear to me to be desirous of keeping together if possible.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

News Published with names of Immigrants from the SS Dresden

Following you will find some notes published in different newspapers of those days that mention the names of the immigrants that came in the SS Dresden.
I hope this could be useful for the descendants that are looking for their relatives, to have a new clue on their investigations.
Best wishes,



Feb. 20th 1889 - The Standard
NOTICE: The Irish Immigrants: The following parties, married couples, seek situations as follows:
  • John Maher coachman
  • Mary cook
  • Thomas Byrne coachman
  • Mrs. Cook
  • James McCelean groom
  • John Fitzgerald gas-fitter
  • Wife cook
  • William Moore coachman
  • Wife cook
  • John O’Neil indoor servant
  • Wife general servant 
Applications for above to be made at the British Immigration Office, 365 Calle Reconquista


Mar. 15th 1889 - The Southern Cross

General News I: If Mary Cahill will communicate with her parents, Colonia Irlandesa, Naposta, F.C.S., it will be a comfort to them. They have lost her address.

General News II: We have received letters from the Irish Colony for the following persons: Theresa Bushe care of Mres Jones, Bridget O’Brien c/o Robert Narrel, Bertie c/o Vicomte R. de Bondy, G.S. Tatton, Katie Cronin c/o Mr. Anthonev, Katie O’Regan c/o Mr. Fuchs, Miss Hannah Cronin c/o Sra. R. Moliana de Olivera, Alice Mulcahy c/o George J. W. Buston, Caroline Gainey c/o Mr. V.L. Segui, Patrick Watson c/o Cosmos Club, Hugo Somers, Frank Gardiner.


Mar. 22th, 1889 - The Southern Cross

General Items: We heard yesterday of a shocking affair that demands strict explanation by the authorities. On Sunday morning Annie Murphy, an Irish girl employed by Mrs. Perkins at Barracas, and of excellent character, came up town to visit her father and mother and give them ten dollars she had earned and saved since her arrival in the steamer Dresden. When going home after dusk she had to go along the railway for a short distance and fell, fracturing her skull. Two Japanesse sailors who ere passing saw the accident and rushed to help her; they were about to look for water for her when the police came up and arrested them for assaulting her, and then her, for being drunk!! They look her to the guardship, where the poor girl died, and was buried in her clothes, except her stays and boots, by which the broken hearted mother knew that the victim of this outrage on humanity was her daughter. But for the exertions of Messrs Reid, Bridger, Patterson, Andrews and Bennet, the particulars of this inhuman case would probably never have come to light, and these gentlemen deserve public thanks

SS Dresden - News of the arrival

Feb. 10th 1889, Buenos Aires Herald
News of the Day
A new steamer, the Dresden, of the North German Lloyd line, left Queenstown on January 25th, for Buenos Aires, with 1800 immigrants, mostly Irish. Sres. Navarro and Granella are also on board. On Friday 1271 immigrants were disembarked at the Catalinas Mole from the English Steamer Calabria.


Feb. 12th 1889 - The Standard
Editors Table
Mr. O’Meara’s thousand Irish emigrants will be in Montevideo today. They form the largest batch of emigrants that has ever arrived here from the United Kingdom, and it is the bounden duty of our community to give them a cordial reception. English, Scotch and Irish estancieros should come forward and employ the agricultural families. The artisans and girls will be pretty certain of employment in this city in the workshops and as servants. We learn that Mr. Thomas Kincaid, the well known Rio Negro estanciero, had and interview with the Minister yesterday about starting an Irish Colony there and placing all the new comers on it. The Government should lend the most willing ear and aid to this proposal. The success of such colony –and in Mr. Kincaid’s hands it would be certain to succeed- would be more powerful in attacking a stream of bone and muscle from the north of Europe than the efforts of ten thousand propagandistas. Meanwhile, it is most desirable that some immediate local preparation be made to receive, cheer and encourage these poor people on their arrival in a land where everything will be strange to them –climate, customs, language, and everything except their religion. The meeting at Messrs S. B. Hale and Co’s offices today is a well timed step, and we invite all our readers to attend it.


Feb. 13th 1889 - The Standard
Editors Table
The event of yesterday was the meeting to arrange for the reception of the Irish Emigrants expected to arrive today in the steamer Dresden. It was a splendid success and will certainly be productive of great results. A steam of Irish blood to this republic may now be confidently counted upon.


Feb. 15th 1889 - Buenos Aires Herald

Feb. 16th 1889 - La Prensa

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Wistorical Article Published in Facebook

Ref: Article - The SS Dresden Affair – Wistorical Facebook Page:

Dear Mr Bunbury,

Reading through your article published on your facebook page regarding the case of the SS Dresden Affair would suggest it was based on a flawed publication by Mike Geraghty. Consequently, I would like to highlight and clarify some issues arising.

In your introduction you rightly acknowledge the correct name of the steamship involved in the emigration to Argentina which had previously been misnamed on the RTE Genealogy Show broadcast on the 11th  May 2014. Just to reconfirm, it was not the City of Dresden, but it was, as Peter Mulvany has already identified, the SS Dresden.

There is another error within the text, for example, the reference to the letter of Archbishop Croke, which states: Archbishop Croke, patron of the GAA, was appalled by the treatment of the Dresden émigrés and penned a strong letter to the Freeman’s Journal in Dublin: ‘Buenos Aires is a most cosmopolitan city into which the Revolution of ’48 has brought the scum of European scoundrelism. I most solemnly conjure my poorer countrymen, as they value their happiness hereafter, never to set foot on the Argentine Republic however tempted to do so they may be by offers of a passage or an assurance of comfortable homes’.”

This was said by the Archbishop, but not after the Dresden had arrived. He wrote the letter on January 25th 1889, almost a month prior to the arrival of the SS Dresden to Buenos Aires. Archbishop Croke could not have known about the Dresden émigrés as they had not passed through Buenos Aires at the time of writing, although it is a very interesting letter and presents the case. The question here was what kind of future for the Irish if they had stayed at home, or would they have been better off emigrating like thousand of citizens all over the world, not only to Argentina, but to the USA, Australia, New Zealand, etc. Following you will find the link to the transcription of the original article from the Archbishop (http://descendientesdresden.blogspot.com.ar/2014/05/letters-archbishop-of-cashel-on.html).

You also reported “Argentina was enjoying an economic boom at this time, with 20,000 new arrivals every month, including 1,000 Italians who arrived on the same day as Dresden.” This is true, partially. At that time Argentina was experiencing one of it’s economic crisis that ended in 1890 with the resignation of President Juarez Celman following a revolution encouraged by the Radical Party. The so called boom was not good for the Argentine economy because it was about to explode. However it is true that immigrants were coming in their thousands every day and it was said that at the time, that if you entered a bar where there were ten people, nine would be foreigners, and only one would be Argentine.

Then there are two paragraphs within the article that should also be considered which state; “Amongst them were several "decrepit octogenarians" as well as an unspecified number of convicts plucked out of Limerick and Cork jails on condition they would not return to Ireland.”  “According to The Southern Cross, ‘young girls of prepossessing appearance were inveigled into disreputable houses – a swell carriage with swell occupants drives up, promises of a splendid situation are made and accepted, and away go the unsuspecting girls’. And, as Michael John Geraghty put it, ‘so began a long tradition of Irish whores in the squalid, now-gone-red-light district down at the port area of Buenos Aires’. Some of the city’s most famous "madams" were Irish women.” This could be possible, but I did not find any extant records which would confirm Geraghty’s analysis that there were convicts and whores on the list. Older people are mentioned in many articles (La Prensa, The Standard, The Southern Cross and Buenos Aires Herald). But it would be a good point to prove this from Ireland. You may have much more knowledge as to where I can find records of convicts in order to cross that information with the SS Dresden passenger list. Perhaps you can advise?. There is only one article in the La Prensa published in Feb. 21st 1889 which reported the following “Llamaban la atención varias mujeres ebrias que ofrecían espectáculos poco edificantes, que no hablaba muy bien a favor del acierto en la elección de esos inmigrantes y que deberían prevenirse por quien corresponda. It drew attention that several drunken women featuring unedifying spectacles, that doesn’t spoke very good for the confidence in the choice of these immigrants and should be prevented by the appropriate parties.” But it never said anything about whores. It was true that at the time many articles were describing the Immigrants from the SS Dresden stating they were not the “happy and successful irish-argentine farmer”. But I think that it is very different from what the article affirms.
You also said  “Upon arrival, they were informed that their luggage – sent on ahead – had been lost, and that, unless they happened to have a tent in their pocket, the only accommodation available was under trees and in ditches.” Fr. Gaughren describes very well the trip and the arrival to Napostá and he doesn’t mention anything regarding lost luggage. See Buenos Aires Herald published March 15th 1889, (http://descendientesdresden.blogspot.com.ar/2014/05/letters-from-rev-f-matthew-gaughren-omi.html).

A final paragraph that might be considered for revision states “Fr. Matthew Gaughren lived amongst the Napostá Irish for several months. By March 1891, the colony had collapsed and 520 men, women and children began the long trek back to Buenos Aires. Over one hundred of them had died in Napostá; there would be more deaths on the road to Buenos Aires. Many of those who made it back either returned to Ireland or moved on to the USA.” It should be noted,  Fr. Gaughren was not in Argentina in 1891. He said these words when he sent a letter to a newspaper telling them what he has seen as an “eye witness” at the Hotel de Inmigrantes, when they arrived in Buenos Aires in February of 1889. In the following link you will find some letters of Fr. Gaughren that were published in different newspapers during that time.. (http://descendientesdresden.blogspot.com.ar/2014/05/letters-from-rev-f-matthew-gaughren-omi.html).

Another paragraph states “Father Matthew Gaughran O.M.I., a Dublin-born priest in the city at this time, recalled seeing people passed out with hunger and exhaustion on the cold flags of the courtyard, while their children ran around them naked. ‘To say they were treated like cattle would not be true’, he wrote, ‘for the owner of cattle would at least provide them with food and drink, but these poor people were left to live or die unaided by the officials who are paid to look after them’. That is true.

Mike Geraghty’s article was excellent for many reasons. Thanks to him, the story was once again the subject of discussion among everyone here in the Irish Argentine community. But, as I talk with Mike, this story deserves a much deeper study. As there is now no access to direct sources, we only have what was published on the news, some personal letters of F. Matthew Gaughren that I have, some records found on books like Gainor’s or Mulhall or Murray, and the most important thing, the memories and stories of the descendants.  With all this we may gain a better insight into what is commonly referred to as the Dresden Affair.

Those times were hard and not only in Argentina, but in every part of the world, including the USA. How many deaths occurred in the Irish colony will not change the end of the story. The fact is, many kids died there (and adult people too). If you look at the place in Google maps, you will see nothing around the train station... so, the question arises where were they buried? It may be their remains were moved to the local cemetery in Bahia Blanca, but that is unproven. Irrespective those lost lives deserve to be remembered.

What happens after 1891 when the Society La Viticola Argentina, declares bankruptcy, is another question to be answered. Mike Geraghty reported in his article that surviving emigrants started their way back to Buenos Aires, walking. That could be true. To imagine hundreds of people walking all together to Buenos Aires, is a rare picture. I think each one did their best. One of the first things that I did when I started researching this project, was to check the names on the passenger list with the actual White Pages of the phone book. I discovered that many of the names are in a 500 km radius of each other. This includes Mar del Plata and Balcarce (where the Nealon, McCarthy and Stephens families were finally established).

Argentina was and is a very particular and complex case to study. The language was not a minor thing in this entire story. In this regard, I recommend “Historia de la Inmigración en la Argentina” Fernando Devoto, 2003, Editorial Sudamericana and “Cómo fue la inmigración irlandesa en Argentina” Hilda Sábato and Juan Carlos Korol, 1981, Buenos Aires, Plus Ultra.

Interestingly many of the emigrants return to Ireland because there were credits to travel back. This was a very common thing between the English-speaking community. Many of them, as I have discovered contacted some descendants and kept on going. The case of the Tracey family was one. They went back to Ireland, remained there for a while, and shortly after, went to the USA where they finally stayed.
The batch of immigrants was nearly 1800. From this only 800 went to the Bahia Blanca, ten days after their arrival. What happens with those 1000? That’s a good question.

The case of the SS Dresden deserves to be studied seriously here in Argentina, and in Ireland too. This history involves many people, many descendants and many others like O’Meara, Dillon, Gartland, etc. that are now being judged (good or bad) without knowing exactly what did happen. The Proyecto Los Desciendentes del Dresden   /Dresden Descendants Project want to invite everyone that may agree that the experience of these forgotten emigrants deserves a better and deeper research effort by all concerned to support our objectives.

Once again thanks so much for making this case known and to give everyone the space to interact on this matter.

Gran abrazo desde La Patagonia!

Juan Pablo Alvarez
Proyecto Los Desciendentes del Dresden   

Monday, 19 May 2014

Letters from Rev. F. Matthew Gaughren - OMI

Feb. 20th 1889 - The Standard
The Irish Immigrants - To the Editor of the Standard :
Sir, Allow me, as an eye-witness to give your readers some idea of the treatment wich the newly-arrived immigrants have received at the Hotel de Inmigrantes. Anything more scandalous could not be imagined. The 1800 passengers from the Dresden were allowed to land on Saturday when the authorities well knew that there was no accommodation for them. Many hundreds of these poor people had not received orders for the Hotel before leaving the ship, and weary hours were spent in the struggle to get the table where these orders were issued.
Then the orders obtained, strong men could fight their way through the throng of Italians into the dining-hall, but the weak, the women and children were left supperless. It was soon evident that unless some special arrangements were made even the shelter of a roof could not be obtained. At the instance of Mr. Johnston, the Director promised to clear out the dining hall after suffer to allow the women and children to sleep there for the night. The promise was not kept. Men, women and children, hungry and exhausted after the fatigues of the day, had to sleep as best they might on the flags of the court-yard . To say that they were treated like cattle it could not be true, for the owner of the cattle would at least provide them with food and drink; but this poor people were left to live or die unaided by the officials who are paid to look after them, and with out the slightest sign of sympathy form these officials. I am told that as a result, a child died during the night of exhaustation.  In England those responsible would be persecuted for manslaughter but in this land of liberty no one minds.
On Sunday things were nearly as bad and were it not for the generosity of Mr Duggan, Mr. Johnston and other charitable gentlemen, who themselves provided food and helped to served it out other deaths night have had to be no corded. No one who witnessed these scenes of helpless, hopeless, despairing misery can forget them until his dying day; and all must pray that, until de arrangements which humanitary and decency would prompt have been made, no more immigrants from the British Isle may arrive in Buenos Ayres.
As many of these poor people are badly clad and in want of bed-clothes, the Superiores of the Irish Convent, Calle Tucuman 1905, kindly consents to receive clothes, blankets, etc. for the immigrants.
I remaind Sir,
Your obedient servant,
M. Gaughren, OMI
Buenos Ayres 18th February, 1889


Feb. 26th 1889 - Buenos Aires Herald

To the Editor of the Herald :
Sir, I may be pardoned for replying to the letter of “An Irishman” in your issue of Saturday last. He controverts the statements which I made in a letter to the Standard a few days ago. Allow me to ask him a few questions.
1st. Is it, or is it not, a fact that when the English and Irish immigrants came ashore on Saturday last the Hotel de Inmigrantes was already over-crowded with people of other nationalities? I have learned from official sources that the hotel was built to accommodate 2000 persons, and that on Saturday night last there were about 5000 within the enclosure.
2nd. Is it, or is it not, a fact that the vast majority of the passengers by the Dresden were obliged to sleep on the flags of the court-yard of the Hotel or to walk about all night?
I saw with my own eyes many hundreds of men, women and children huddled together on the pavement sleeping their sleep of exhaustion after the fatigues of the day.
3rd. Is it, or is it not, a fact that the great mass of the newly arrived English-speaking immigrants, and especially the women and children, were unable to fight their way to the dining hall on that night and were in consequence left supperless?
I appeal to Mr. J. Gahan, who, seeing them hungry, charitably distributed a quantity of bread among them, for a confirmation of my statement .
4th. Is it, or is it not, a fact that hundreds of these poor immigrants for no food on the following morning and would have been left without food all day were it not for the charity of a number of gentlemen, like Mr T Duggan, Mr Johnston, Mr. Methven and others, who not only paid for food for them but served it out with their own hands?
If these things are facts, -and there are numbers of witnesses besides the Immigrants who can vouch for them- what excuse can the Argentine Government offer for meting out such treatment to those whom they brought out here under promise of good care and high wages.
I have yet learn that Ennis is in England or that the savagery and lawlessness of Balfour justifies brutality in the Argentine Republic.
Yours truly, M. Gaughren, O.M.I.


March 15th 1889, Buenos Aires Herald

Colonia Irlandesa, Naposta, March 5th, 1889
To the editor of the Southern Cross.
Dear Sir,
Both you and your readers will, no doubt, feel some curiosity to know how the poor exiles of Erin, to whom you bade God-speed at The Plaza Constitutian on Tuesday evening last, have fared since then. Most of them, within a few hours from their leaving Buenos Aires, found in “Nature’s sweet restorer, balmy sleep”, a temporary reprieve from their miseries. The railway arrangements as regards space were fairly good, and there was nothing that could be called overcrowding. When day dawned, however, and seven hundred hungry mouths craved for breakfast, the first untoward incident of the journey occurred. It was found that the meat supplied by the Government had gone bad during the night, and the bread fell very far, short of the quantity required. Mr. Gartland considerately endeavored to eke out the scanty Government supply by the help of the resources of a wayside station. Tea, coffee, and bread were obtained for the women and children until the refreshment rooms could provide no more. Later on a quantity of bread was got which helped to fill that vacuum which nature is said to abhor, until towards evening we arrived within the hospitable boundary of Mr. Casey’s estate, when, through his generous forethought, a supply of bread, meat and milk awaited us, which gave the poor travelers a satisfying supper. Through unpardonable mismanagement somewhere we did not reach our journey’s end till after seven o´clock. As we alighted from the train darkness was just closing in, and the scene of confusion which ensued in consequence can well be imagined. The wagons had to be unloaded without delay, and there were no lights in the train to guide the workers. Men, women and children were landed on unknown ground, over which they had to grope their way. It was too dark to permit of the tents which had come with us being pitched, and all had to resign themselves to the prospect of passing the night in the open air. I must confess that my heart sank within me when I beheld the number of helpless women and children, enfeebled by the long voyage and by the miseries of their stay in Buenos Aires, thus condemned to fresh wretchedness without a possibility of relief and the more so as some lightning flashes in the horizons seemed to threaten a storm. Fortunately, the beds and tent-canvases formed some protection against the dampness of the ground and the dews of the night. But of what use would they have been had a thunder-storm come on? A large quantity of roast beef was again distributed among the immigrants, thus forestalling the pangs of hunger. Then all settled down for the night as best they could, to that of repose which even their misfortunes and sufferings could not rob them.
Morning dawned bright and cheerful, and the gloomy foreshadowings of the previous night melted away with the rising sun. Divine Providence had taken pity on the poor and removed the storm far from them. The buoyant and Celtic temperament asserted itself, and soon the miseries of the past were forgotten and hopes rose high at the prospect of the future. And if the future of the immigrants at all resembles the landscape which the first rays of that morning’s sun unfolded to our view, there is reason to leave sorrow behind. The country is really beautiful. It consists of a series of undulations in the land, not high enough to be called hills, but which in England would have the name of downs. It reminds me very much of the counties of Kent or Sussex. There is no part of Ireland that I know of like it. In the far distance rise up the peaks of the mountains of Curumalan. If the land is only equal in quality to the landscape, and if the seasons prove favourable the lot of these poor immigrants will have been cast in pleasant places. Of the quality of the land I am not a competent judge, but if I might form an opinion from the result obtained from the Vine-Culture Company after five months working, I would say that much of it is very fertile.
Early on the morning after their arrival the colonists moved of to the spot selected for their encampment. Waggons provided by Mr. Gartland conveyed the luggage, stores, tents, etc. An unfortunate accident, by which some women sitting on the luggage in a bullock cart were thrown off resulted in the death of a child whom one of them held in her arms. Before night all the tents ere pitched, and order began to prevail where chaos had hitherto reigned. Friday and Saturday were spent in completing arrangements, in securing a proper distribution of food, and building a temporary chapel.
On Sunday I had the happiness of celebrating the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for the poor people, under the shelter provided on the hillside, and hearts and bands were raised towards heaven as fervently as if the sacred rites were solemnized within the precincts of some glorious cathedral. May the prayers of these poor, simple but faithful people bring down upon them abundant blessings, temporal and spiritual!
On Wednesday work began. Some were told off to build houses, some to sink wells, some to construct corrals for the cattle, and those who had previous experience in tilling to plough the ground. As soon as their houses will be completed the farms will be distributed by lot and each family will be left to shift for itself, provisions, however, being supplied until the crops come in.
Many of the poor people have not yet recovered from the effects of the hardships which they have gone through, and illness, especially diarrhea, prevails to a great extent among the children. Three deaths have already resulted from it, and some more are sure to follow. In several cases mothers are too debilitated to suckle their infants. Although Mr. Gartland has provided fourteen milk-cows the supply of milk is not equal to the demand, and children who have been accustomed to it have to go without. Of course, after a little time, each family will have its own cow, but meanwhile the want is felt, as our people have, rightly or wrongly –wrongly say the natives here- an idea that milk is the most beneficial food for their children.
The Government supplies have been supplemented by a liberal allowance of flesh-meat; rations of biscuit, tea, sugar, salt, etc., are being dealt out, and if the commissariat is not ideally perfect, it is such, at all events, as to obviate any danger of starvation.
Notwithstanding the efforts made by so many charitable friends to supply their wants, many of these poor people are still sadly in need of clothing of all kinds, and as the nights are getting quite cold, blankets will be required for a considerable number amongst them. Donations of these necessary articles will be much more useful than money.
I remain, dear Sir, Yours very truly,
M. Gaughren, O.M.I.


Nov. 1st 1889, The Southern Cross

Naposta Oct. 25, 1889
To the Editor of the Southern Cross.
Dear Sir,
The life of a quiet agricultural colony does not help much to the making of history, and, in consequence, I have but few items to give you in reference to local events. But these few are of a cheering character.
In the first place, Monday the 14th instant witnessed the inauguration of the school for the children of the colony, which owes its inception to the generosity of Mrs. Edward Morgan of Giles. Ninety one names were entered on the register the first day. That number has since been raised to over a hundred. Considering the distances which some of the children have to walk –in many instances more than three, and in some cases more than four miles- that is about as large a number as can be expected to attend. Parents are delighted to have the opportunity of education offered to their little ones, and the children themselves are, mostly, just as pleased to renew their acquaintance with the school-work so long interrupted. The class hours are from ten to three o’clock, with half an hour allowed for luncheon; but, long before the hour of opening, the youthful pupils gather in, eager to begin the work of the day.
The better to secure the durability of the work, and to give the colonists a greater interest in it, a School Committee has been formed, which will exercise a general supervision over the school, look after cases of parental neglect and, later on, provide a fuller staff and more complete educational apparatus.
I have had the pleasure, too, …nding a temperance society  -a branch of the League of the Cross under the invocation of St. Patrick, which counts already more than one hundred members. All the best men in the colony have associated themselves with the society, it will, I trust, draw to itself increasing numbers, whose good example will exert a beneficent influence upon those who have get the courage to join it. The …ers which you and a few other friends have sent form the …leus of supply for a reading room, to be, I hope, supplemented later on by a lending library of good books. The pulperia will have fat wetractions for men who have learned to occupy themselves with useful or interesting reading.
The second wagon-load of clothing, sent through the agency of the British Immigration Society, reached me on Thursday. The local committee immediately took steps to assort and divide the articles sent, and yesterday a general distribution took place according to the wants of the different families and the means of supplying them. Every family in the colony received something, I believe for all were more or less in need. The great mass of the people are exceedingly grateful of the charitable donors. “Where else than in Buenos Aires”, many have remarked to me, “could we meet with such generosity from those to whom we are total strangers?” And, when yesterday, in our temporary chapel, I asked the prayers of the crowded congregation for their benefactors, mentioning the names of the two good ladies who have done so much for them –Mrs.Thos. Duggan and Mrs. Morgan- many a low murmured but fervent “God bless them” went up to the throne of the Giver of all good gifts.
We have had two deaths in the colony during the past week. In one case a good old woman, who had accompanied her son out to this country, but who has been ill since her landing, was called away. The other case is that of a boy who has been ailing for a considerable time. Otherwise the health of the colony is remarkably good.
Notwithstanding the difficulties arising from the want of suitable cattle, the work of tillage goes on apace. I confess I am amazed at the amount of excellent work done under the circumstances. Were the colonists supplied with horses fit for the plough, very many of them would have had their entire farms broken up long since.
I am strongly of opinion that many of the despised Naposta colonists could give lessons in both industry and agriculture to some of those who talk slightingly about them but who know little of their struggles and their labours. Perhaps even the eloquent gentlemen who discoursed so learnedly before the Literary Society, and who illustrated his lecture by pointing to the colonists of Naposta as beings whose zoological knowledge did not enable them to discriminate between a horse and a goat (vide report in the “Standard”) might, did he deign to visit the people of whom he talks so glibly without knowing them, carry back to Scotland useful hints as to how difficulties in a strage country are to be overcome.
Divine Providence has favored the colonists with the finest of weather for farming operations. Of late, rain and sunshine have alternated and blended in such a way as to remind one of the Emerald Isle, where “Shining through sorrow’s stream, Sadddening in pleasure’s beam, her suns, with doubtful gleam, weep while they rise.
The result so far has been most beneficial. The wheat-crop is making a rapid growth and the land is in excellent condition for ploughing.
I remain, dear Sir, Yours very truly,
M. Gaughren, O.M.I.

Matthew Gaughren, OMI (1843 – 1914)

Fr. Matthew Gaughren
Nacido en 1843 en Dublín, Irlanda, fue uno de tres hermanos religiosos. Ordenado sacerdote en 1867, es destinado a Holly Cross en Liverpool. Allí fundó en 1884 los “Círculos Apostólicos”, cuyo objetivo era el de mantener el noviciado y el colegio de misioneros oblatos. Estos círculos estaban compuestos de doce contribuyentes, quienes se reunían asiduamente para orar y hacer donaciones.
En 1888 estuvo en el Reformatorio Glencree, en Irlanda. De ahí pasó a Tower Hill en Londres antes de convertirse en Provincial. Fue durante su ministerio en Tower Hill que visitó la Argentina “… y recolectó fondos en Sud América para disminuir la deuda de una iglesia ahí…” tal como nos informa Fr. Michael Hughes , OMI, quien nos brindó transcripciones de la correspondencia entre F. Matthew Gaughren y sus superiores.
Ésta misma correspondencia nos da una interesante descripción de la vida de los irlandeses que por aquellos días habitaban nuestro suelo. Máxime teniendo en cuenta que su testimonio es lo único que llega hasta nuestros días avalando la existencia de la desaparecida y mítica Colonia Irlandesa de Napostá, al norte de Bahía Blanca.
En Julio de 1888 Fr. Gaughren llega a la Argentina en el vapor SS Galicia. En Agosto comienza su peregrinaje por las Pampas Argentinas, en principio por Capilla del Señor, siguiendo por Zárate y luego por los alrededores de Buenos Aires. Durante su viaje, organizaba con los pobladores irlandeses los horarios para las misas y las confesiones.
Claramente discrimina en sus cartas el trabajo pastoral, que lo describe como algo que disfruta, y la colecta de plata, cosa que por esos días era difícil debido a la situación económica del país (presidencia de Juárez Celman).
Describe a los habitantes Irish-Argentine, a los que los llama como “nuestra gente”, como tradicionalmente hospitalarios, de profunda fe y corazón generoso. “En todos los lugares a los que he sido recibo gran benevolencia”. Su colecta por ese entonces sumó dos mil setecientas cincuenta pesos moneda nacional, una cifra para nada despreciable por ese entonces.
En Diciembre vuelve a Buenos Aires para pasar la Navidad, rara por demás para él, ya que estaba acostumbrado a la fría y nevada Noche Buena del viejo continente. En tanto aquí el calor, la humedad y los días largos le jugaban una mala pasada.
Ya empezado el nuevo año de 1889, las noticias respecto del desembarco de un enorme contingente irlandés había puesto a la sociedad angloparlante en alerta. En consecuencia se formaron comisiones que harían los arreglos necesarios para controlar y ver que nada les falte a estos inmigrantes. Un proyecto de colonia irlandesa se gestaba a través de Mr. Gartland, representante de la Vitícola Argentina, empresa que emplearía a los irlandeses en esta viña cercana a Napostá.
El 16 de Febrero amarra en el muelle de las Catalinas el Vapor SS Dresden. Más de 1700 inmigrantes, en su mayoría irlandeses, son llevados al viejo Hotel de Inmigrantes, en Retiro.
Fr. Gaughren formaba parte de una comisión que se encargaría de verificar que nada les falte en el hotel y que estuviesen bien atendidos. Luego él, junto con otros integrantes de la comisión, los acompañaría en un tren especial que los llevaría hasta Napostá.
Los retrasos y problemas comienzan a surgir. El hacinamiento en el hotel de inmigrantes se hace insostenible. Gente viviendo en condiciones infrahumanas. El gobierno, que se veía superado por la cantidad de inmigrantes arribados también de otras nacionalidades, hacía agua, y los artículos de los diarios dejaban clara evidencia de que esto era el resultado de una pésima gestión de los agentes de propaganda apostados en toda Europa. Estaba muy claro que se había infringido todas las prohibiciones de la Ley 817 de Inmigración y Colonización. Otro golpe más para el gobierno de turno.
Finalmente y luego de varios días de atraso, parte desde Plaza Constitución el 27 de Febrero de 1889 el tren rumbo a Napostá, donde cerca de ahí se establecería la colonia. Se había dejado por escrito un contrato, redactado por la Comisión, en el cual se detallaban todos los pormenores del establecimiento de las familias en los territorios de la colonia. En principio iban a ser previstos de carpas y materiales para la construcciones de sus casa.
Al llegar, el paisaje desolado los recibió sin sus pertenencias y debieron pasar la mayor parte del tiempo en precarias construcciones y tiendas de acampar. Esta situación se prolongaría más de lo previsto.
En una de sus cartas donde el Padre M. Gaughren le cuenta a su provincial Padre Tatin lo que vivió por más de un mes en esa colonia. Eran cerca de setecientos irlandeses a los que luego se les sumaron ciento veinte ingleses más. La mayoría de ellos seguía viviendo en tiendas en la ladera de una colina. Un poco más arriba había un pequeño techo de chapa galvanizada, donde se había improvisado una pequeña capilla donde Fr. Gaughren daba misa. Esa era la capilla de la colonia.
Su trabajo pastoral estaba centrado en la Pascua, para la cual preparó con anticipación, dándoles clases, a veintiséis chicos para que tomen su primera comunión.
Decía además, “He tenido un buena cantidad de tumbas que bendecir debido a que ha habido una gran mortalidad entre los niños principalmente por diarrea, debido a los cambios de clima y comida”.
A finales de Marzo, F. Matthew Gaughren dejó la colonia. “Había un gran pesar entre la pobre gente de la colonia cuando yo me fui debido a que es incierto cuando ellos podrán volver a ver a un cura. Si puedo manejarlo llamaré para volver a verlos nuevamente antes de dejar la provincia aunque es un largo viaje – 20 horas en tren desde aquí.” La realidad fue que la colonia siguió sin un sacerdote.
Nuevamente volvió a sus tareas de recolección de fondos por los campos de Argentina, tal como había empezado. Pero aún seguía con la intención de volver a la colonia. En reiteradas cartas, le pide permiso a su superior para volver.
Finalmente en Marzo de 1890 se embarca rumbo a Ginebra, y de ahí a Paris, donde le comunica el mismísimo Superior General de la orden que será nombrado Provincial. Su sorpresa fue notable. En su carta fechada 16 de Junio de 1890, dirigida al quien había sido su provincial en Tower Hill, Fr. Tatin, él le comenta: “…Se imaginará mi sorpresa cuando, en mi arribo a Paris, el mismo Padre General me anunció mi nombramiento. Usando la histórica expresión de Fr. Pinet, “me cayó como una bomba”. Apenas podía creer lo que oía y por algún momento me inclinaba a pensar que solo se trataba de una broma…”
En 1893 tras una serie de negociaciones tratadas entre el Arzobispo de Sydney, Patrick Cardinal Moran, y los Oblatos de Inchicore en Dublín, entre los que él se encontraba, acuerdan que debían dirigirse a una misión Oblatos a Fremantle, Australia, en la que habría que organizar una casa de misioneros y una escuela industrial. En una carta fechada el 17 de Marzo de 1893, en la que el Padre Matthew Gaughren le escribe a F. Gibney, OMI (Obispo de Perth), dice “Nuestro Superior General estuvo de acuerdo, me ha dando permiso para enviar cuatro padres a esta provincia para encargarse del doble trabajo que el Cardenal nos propuso. Para la misión de Fremantle (Australia), en la que Su Eminencia ha estado confiado en que esté a nuestro cargo, proponemos enviar tres padres. Para la escuela industrial solo un padre con cuatro o cinco hermanos será suficiente inicialmente. La dificultad de mantener la escuela industrial es un punto que representa en si mismo un estreno.” Allí, en Fremantle, permaneció como padre párroco hasta 1895. Por ese entonces las distancias y las comunicaciones parecían entorpecer las tareas de los misioneros. Debía atravesar enormes distancias, en condiciones poco saludables. Los primeros padres en llegar a Fremantle fueron Fr. Matthew Gaughren, Roger Hennessy y Daniel O’Ryan. De éste último rescatamos una de sus cartas dirigidas a Fr. Tatin, en la cual se refiere a las condiciones en las que se encontraban misionando en este lugar: “Viviendo condiciones suficientemente duras. En el arribo a Fremantle los Oblatos encontraron simplemente lo que supo ser alguna vez una edificación sólida. Luego tuvimos que repararlo a un costo de trescientos ocho libras con cuatro peniques. Todo este dinero fue gastado en la casa misma, independientemente de algún mueble. No había más que dos viejas camas en la casa. No teníamos ningún cuchillo para usar en la cena, ni una taza para tomar, ni siquiera una silla donde sentarnos.”
Encontramos luego, una narración de uno de los testigos de la misión que la vio crecer y dar algunas frutos en el corto tiempo: “Hace solo tres meses atrás que el Provincial de la Orden de Gran Bretaña llegó aquí (NA a Fremantle) con otros dos padres – hombres jóvenes – buenos predicadores – fuertes hombres activos – quienes hicieron explotar las cosas aquí… la primera cosa que hicieron fue sostener la misión, luego establecieron la Liga de la Cruz (League of the Cross) luego instituyeron una misa adicional para alivianar el acomodamiento en la última misa. La escuela de los chicos está nuevamente disponible para nuestro uso para reuniones de entretenimiento y un escenario fue erigido en él y un concierto semanal es realizado bajo el auspicio de la Liga de la Cruz…()… El Provincial, Muy Rev. Fr. Gaughren brinda un curso de sermones de Doctrina Católica.”
Luego de un año, el Provincial Fr. Matthew Gaughren volvió a Irlanda y el padre Thomas Ryan de 37 años lo suplantó.
Tiempo más tarde fue consagrado Obispo en la iglesia de St Mary’s Star of the Sea en Leith, Escocia, donde permaneció hasta 1902.
Luego de la muerte de su hermano, F. Anthony Gaughren, OMI, quien fuera el primer Vicario Apostólico de Kimberly (Ciudad del Cabo – Sudáfrica), fue elegido como su sucesor, desempeñándose como Administrador del Vicariato de Transvaal (NE de Sudáfrica) hasta su muerte el 1 de Junio de 1914.
Bajo la jurisdicción de ambos obispos, el Vicariato de Kimberley vio multiplicar sus escuelas e iglesias. En 1910 contaba ya con 16 iglesias y capillas, 19 sacerdotes y un colegio donde 300 niños recibían una completa educación.
Actualmente sus restos se encuentran enterrados en Kimberly, Sudáfrica.

Correspondencia del Padre Matthew Gaughren 1888 – 1889

The Contract for the Colony at Bahía Blanca


It is hereby agreed between Don Pedro A. Gartland o the one hand and Edward Casey (President), John Drysdale (Vice-President), F.H. Mulhall (Hon. Sec.) for the Committee on the other.-
Art. 1st – Don Pedro A. Gartland, in representation of the Argentine Vine-Culture Company, by whom he has been duly empowered for this effect, transfers the right and property of four hundred Chacras (small farms) of its lands in Bahía Blanca to an equal number of agricultural families at the rate of eighty dollars (80 M/n) per Hectarea nominal value in Celulas serie N. Of the Provincial Mortgage Bank transferring on account or in full payment there of a portion of the debt which the Company owes to the said Mortgage Bank of the Province; furthermore the Argentine Vine-Culture Company binds itself to provide the Colonist during one year with provisions, seed, tools, housing and animals, in the form and proportion hereinafter expressed, to the amount of ($100 m/n) one thousand dollars national money each family at a charge of (9%) nine percent yearly for interest and administration. The Argentine Vine-Culture Company reserves to itself the right to arrange at any time with one of the Banks, on the Guarantee of the Company, an advance of one or two thousand dollars for each of the said Agriculturists and which shall be received by the Company in payment of the provisions, seeds, housing, implements, animals, etc. aforesaid supplied them during the year, in which case no more interest will be charged than the Bank rate plus(2%) two percent  for administration expenses. In case the company does not give its guarantee then it will only recover the actual outlay leaving the colonists at liberty to administer the balance.
Art 2nd – Should the mortgage transference not reach the full amount of the of the purchase price the difference will be charged to each agriculturist at the same rate of 9% (nine per cent) annually as the other advances, and which shall be liquidate each quarter, the families paying for same by the 1 result of the sale of their erops.
Art 3rd – The colonist and their luggage together with such tolls and implements as the Company shall furnish them, must be conveyed at the cost of the Government, to the hands of the Argentine Vine-Culture Company, situated in Bahia Blanca along the Southern Railway track between kilometres 679 and 684.
Art 4th – Settlers must draw lots for their farms, the title-deeds for which shall be immediately drawn out and delivered over to each by the agent of the Company.
Art 5th – The Company to supply each settler with the following provisions: Daily ration for each person: one kilo of meat, quarter kilo of bread or biscuit or the equivalent in flour, two ounces of rice and half an ounce of salt for 28 cents per day and per head.
Monthly rations per head: two kilos of soap, four kilos of yerba mate (native teh), one kilo of tobacco and eight sheets of paper for one half dollar per head per month, besides an extraordinary allowance to those who may require it of half an ounce of coffee, one ounce of sugar and thee sticks (astillas) of tire wood for fifteen cents paper money.
Art 6th – Each colonist will be provided with a book in which shall be noted whatever goods and advances of any kind have been made from time to time expressing the amount and value of each item.
Art 7th – The aforesaid gentlemen hereby compromise themselves that the English and irish colonists, per SS “Dresden”, accept the foregoing clauses and guarantee morally their due and proper fulfilment of same.
Art 8th – Said gentlemen likewise bind themselves to procure ___ tents, during ___ days, for accommodation of said settlers and their families on their arrival at the ground and during the construction of their respective houses.
They likewise undertake to supply food to said colonists and families during the first five days of their arrival on the ground.
Art 9th – Both parties agree to extend all the benefits and obligations expressed in the eight preceding articles to such a number of artisans as may be found necessary to the working o the colony.
Art 10th – This contract shall be drawn out by a notary public in proper legal form. And in conformity and proof thereof we both sign in the one tenor and accord.
Buenos Aires, February 1889.

Letters - The Archbishop of Cashel on Emigration to Buenos Ayres

Friday March 1st 1889 - The Southern Cross

Letters - The Archbishop of Cashel on Emigration to Buenos Ayres
We give below part a letter addressed by His Grace the archbishop of Cashel to the Dublin “Freeman’s Journal” advising Irishman no to immigrate to this country. We omit the portion of His Grace’s letter which refers to the tumult of 1875 and the burning of the Jesuit church. The history of such lumentable events may very properly he repeated in Ireland, but in the Argentine Republic it is better they were forgotten.
Thomas W. Croke

To the Editor of the “Freeman Journal”.
The Palace, January 25, 1889.
My Dear Sir,
I have seen by a late issue of the “Freeman” as well as by the columns of other papers, that in face of the sound and fatherly advice given to the contrary by his Lordship of Limerick, the Dean of Cashel and other well-wisher of our people, no less 500 families bound for Buenos Ayres have quite recently left for Queenstown, thence to be conveyed to the far distant, and hitherto almost unknown, land so strangely and, I might say, so defiantly, adopted by them as their future home.
Buenos Ayres, or the City of Good Air, is, to be sure, a beautiful, and, as some think, a very thriving capital. It has close on 500,000 inhabitants. Its streets and stores its Moorish arcades, its princely palaces and public squares, together with the proverbial salubrity of its climate, would make it in many ways a delightful or at least a desirable place to live in. But it is not, after all, the stone structures, however grand, the shaded avenues, however picturesque and refreshing, or even the high wage, however needful and attractive, that a poor Irish emigrant should mainly look for –that moderate share of happiness to which alone, as a rule, he is disposed to aspire here below. He needs something more. He needs to have a friend to speak to. He naturally seeks the companionship of the children of his own race rather than that of utter strangers. He like to breathe the atmosphere of the religion in which he was baptized and brought up, and in which he hopes to die; and he would prefer the scantiest and omost moderate meal with a neighbour, or a neighbours child, to roast and boiled amongst the inhabitants of any other region upon earth.
Now, I have no hesitation whatever in saying, and on authority of the highest order, that the Argentine Republic generally, and Buenos Ayres in a notable degree, is the place of all others with, perhaps, one notorious exception, in which an ordinary emigrating Irishman could find no room for the play or enjoyment of the national tastes and tendencies which I have just enumerated.
Like New Orleans, Buenos Ayres is a most cosmopolitan city. The Revolutions of ’48 brought into it the scum of European scoundrelism. About half of its population bail from the Old World. There are Italians, Spaniards, French, Germans, American Negroes, Indians, and Mulattoes –evory tongue, in fact, tribe, and nation- all mixed up together. How is the poor emigrant from holy Ireland likely to fare as regards religion especially, and social comforts, amongst this to him, uncongenial mass of many tongued humanity?
Between 1810 and 1835 there were thirty-six changes of Government in Buenos Ayres. Since then there have been many others.
I need say no more. I must, however, in conclusion, solemnly conjure my poorer countrymen, as they value their happiness hereafter, never to set foot on the Argentine Republic, however tempted they may be to do so by offers of a free passage or assurance of comfortable homes. The language of the country, being Spanish, is unknown to them; and surely even on that ground alone, if our people must leave the land they love best in quest of fortune elsewhere, they should direct their steps either to the Great Republic of the West, where so many of ther kith and kin live and thrive, and are happy, or to one of the free and flourishing English-speaking colonies that own the sway of Great Britain at the Antipodes.
I remain, my dear Sir,
Your faithful servant,

T. W. Croke – Archbishop of Cashel

Archbishop of Cashel
Croke became a member of the Irish hierarchy when he was translated to be Archbishop of Cashel, one of the four Catholic Irish archbishoprics (Cashel & Emly, Dublin, Armagh and Tuam) in 1875.
Archbishop Croke was a strong supporter of Irish nationalism, aligning himself with the Irish National Land League during the Land War, and with the chairman of the Irish Parliamentary Party, Charles Stewart Parnell. In an 1887 interview he explained that he had opposed the League's "No rent manifesto" in 1881, preferring to stop payment of all taxes: "I opposed the No Rent Manifesto six years ago because, apart from other reasons, I thought it was inopportune and not likely to be generally acted on. Had a manifesto against paying taxes been issued al the tifne I should certainly have supported it on principle. I am precisely the same frame of mind just now."
He also associated himself with the Temperance Movement of Fr. Mathew and Gaelic League from its foundation in 1893. Within Catholicism he was a supporter of Gallicanism, as opposed to the Ultramontanism favoured by the Archbishop of Dublin, Cardinal Cullen.
His support of nationalism caused successive British governments and Lord Lieutenant of Ireland's governments in Dublin to be deeply suspicious of him, as were some less politically aligned Irish bishops.
Following the scandal that erupted over Parnell's relationship with Kitty O'Shea, the separated wife of fellow MP Captain Willie O'Shea, Archbishop Croke withdrew from active participation in nationalist politics.
He died at the Archbishop's Palace in Thurles on 22 July 1902, aged 78. In honour of Croke, his successors as Archbishop of Cashel and Emly traditionally are asked to throw in the ball at the minor Gaelic football and All-Ireland hurling finals.

Source http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Croke