Phoenix, Arizona 2019

International Commemoration
3rd November 2019


The 2019 International Commemoration of the Great Irish Famine took place in Phoenix, Arizona on Sunday, 3rd November.

Confirming the arrangements for the international Commemoration Josepha Madigan T.D., Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and Chair of the National Famine Commemoration Committee commented:

‘As Chair of the National Famine Commemoration Committee, I look forward to the International Famine Commemoration being held in Phoenix, Arizona.  This is the fifth time the commemoration has been held in the U.S. and Phoenix is the westernmost venue to date. Previously the International Famine Commemoration has been held in New York, Boston, New Orleans and Philadelphia. 

I am particularly pleased that the Commemoration is being held in Phoenix this year as 2019 marks the 20th anniversary of the dedication of the Great Hunger Memorial commissioned by the Irish Cultural Center. 

This year’s commemoration represents an opportunity to not only recognize the work of the Irish Cultural Center and McClelland Library in Phoenix itself but to honour the memory of those who left Ireland during the Famine itself, the subsequent years of emigration which saw many Famine Irish and their descendants make an enormous contribution in Western U.S., and the ongoing role of the Irish diaspora and Irish-Americans in Arizona and throughout the Western U.S..”

This was the fifth occasion that the international commemoration was held in the United States.  As of 2019, there had been ten international commemorations of the Great Irish Famine to date. Since the first international commemoration in Toronto and Quebec in 2009, events have also been held in Australia, Canada and the UK.