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Arrival of Irishmen to Work under Philip Duffy - Essay Example

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The paper “Arrival of Irishmen to Work under Philip Duffy” seeks to evaluate different forms of discrimination along with the spread of Asiatic cholera, a disease which had turned into a pandemic affecting large areas of Europe and America in the 1830s…
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Arrival of Irishmen to Work under Philip Duffy
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Download file to see previous pages This discrimination along with a lot of other reasons, economic and social should have prevented the journey of fifty-seven Irish laborers to the United States of America to assist in the construction of a railroad by an American contractor named Philip Duffy. All of them succumbed to death by cholera; recent evidence indicates that many of them may have been murdered (O’ Carroll). Most of them were not granted proper funerals, an event which highlighted the low esteem in which people of Ireland and Catholic nations, in general, were held, in the early nineteenth century. These forms of discrimination along with the spread of Asiatic cholera, a disease which had turned into a pandemic affecting large areas of Europe and America in the 1830s and the subsequent decades, was reason enough for the laborers to not have gone to the United States of America. A lasting cure for this was found out later on (Thomas), but the condition of cheap labor in America would have been the reason for anybody to be cautious. Proper medical facilities were not provided to this man and their lives were often at the risk of being taken by cholera. The condition of the Irish laborers in America was often worse than that of the slaves in America since their wages hardly sufficed for them to afford decent lodgings and good food (Watson, 32). This, along with the threat of disease, meant that the journey to the United States of America was fraught with danger for the Irishmen who worked for Duffy and they undertook it with great peril to their health and eventually, their lives. This alone should have deterred them from their journey to America. The journey that was undertaken by these people should not have materialized, if they had considered the immense risks that it involved, to their lives. The socio-political concerns of the American state were not humanitarian enough to provide safety to these laborers. During this phase, the United States of America, along with other states in Europe, were engaged in improving the state of infrastructure in their countries. Therefore, the safety and well-being of their workers, poor Catholic immigrants at that, was not of primary importance to the American state. It is probably because of this reason that enough payments were not made to Duffy for the building of the railroad that was assigned to him, a part of the Philadelphia and Columbia Railroad. In a situation where he did not have sufficient resources, it is believed that he chose to let the laborers bear the brunt of the lack of money, that is, to place them in circumstances that were more likely to push them into being victims of cholera, which they eventually did (ibid, 65). The 1830s was also the decade which saw a raging debate in England regarding the reform bills that were to give more rights to the Catholics of Ireland. This created a polarizing effect in other parts of the world, especially in America, which still was close, politically to England (Roberts, 689-90). This led to the prejudices against the Catholics to deepen and take a more aggressive turn. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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This essay was always my weak point. I could never complete it well. Still, after I found this particular document, I understood how it should be done. So, I performed my research afterward and completed the essay in several hours, instead of days as it was previously.
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