Sunday, October 8, 2017

A trip to Ireland and Scotland with the girls - 2


Watercolour and crayon
©2017 Charlene Brown

After Blarney Castle, our Irish RailTour took us to the picturesque port of Cobh on the south coast of County Cork. 

This relatively small town was key to the maritime and emigration legacy of Ireland. In the eighteenth century, the port, then known as Cove, had become an important centre for merchant shipping (and shipping-adjacent activities like piracy), and in the nineteenth century became a tactical naval military base, especially during the Napoleonic Wars between France and Britain (of which Ireland was still a part). The name of the port was changed to Queenstown in 1848 to commemorate a visit by Queen Victoria and was a major point of embarkation for the transportation of ‘criminals’ to Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania) as well as the massive migration to North America at the time of the Famine. The name was officially changed to Cobh, a Gaelicisation of Cove, in 1920 around the time of the formation of the Irish Free State. 

A ‘Victorian’ garden and many international flags line what is now a major cruise ship terminal.