An Unknown Irish Story
This is the story of an idylic irish childhood torn asunder by the famine of 1847, and the trials of emigration to a new life in Canada.
It was on her father’s farm, on the old Coach Road between Dromore and Enniskillen, that Polly spent an idyllic two years with her parents, George and Jane Noble. Then Disaster struck. On January 6, 1839, the infamous ‘Big Wind’ rose out of the sea and swept across Ireland, wailing like a thousand banshees. It flattened whole villages, burned down farm houses, and finally killed her father. It changed Polly’s life forever.
Only 10 years old, Polly was on her way to a new life in Canada. After an appalling voyage, during which some of the passengers, including Polly’s darling little brother and sister died, they docked at Grosse-Île, the quarantine station on the St. Lawrence River, about an hour from Quebec.
After three years in Montreal, where she met her future husband, Polly was now ready for her next adventure in a vast unknown land called Canada. Her destiny would be linked with a dozen children who had lost their mothers, one of them a future mayor of Toronto.
What a splendid book ... what a delightful story ... I could feel the slushy peat field ... I could smell the rain coming. M. O’Gallagher
We need more books like this that speak of hope in the midst of adversity. Nigel Frith, Principal Omagh Integrated College, Omagh, Northern Ireland
I loved the book. It made me feel part of this family. Evelyn West Past President, Clogher Historical Society, Monahan, rep. of Ireland
Polly is unforgettable. Marie Foley Director (ret) Neilsen Gallery, Boston, Mass.
I've never seen a book like it. Mickey McGuinness Co-ordinator of the Community, History, and Heritage Project, Derry, Northern Ireland
I think this book is cool. Ciaran Mallon age 7 (2009), Dromore, Northern Ireland