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View Diary: Wherein I get my Irish up (58 comments)

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  •  This has been my experience as well. (10+ / 0-)

    It's as if history began when they crossed the sea to the US.

    Do what you can with what you have where you are - Guild of Maintainers

    by bablhous on Sun Mar 13, 2011 at 03:28:32 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  The most my grandfather would say (13+ / 0-)

      about his father's life in Ireland was

      It was a hard time.
       Master of the understatement, he was.  

      If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

      by marykk on Sun Mar 13, 2011 at 03:33:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not uncommon, regardless of ethnicity. (6+ / 0-)

      I think there was a desire to put the past behind, and pin hopes on the opportunity they saw in their new country.  Many times the immigrants came from impoverished, lower-class backgrounds that were (in their minds anyway) nothing to brag about.

      For my German ancestors, there was also the war.  The experience Vonnegut wrote about in Palm Sunday was pretty common:

      As I have said in other books, the anti-Germanism in this country during the First World War so shamed and dismayed my parents that they resolved to raise me without acquainting me with the language or the literature or the music or the oral family histories which my ancestors had loved. They volunteered to make me ignorant and rootless as proof of their patriotism.

      I've collected a good assortment of data on that branch, but the little personal stores and traditions that make a family history come to life are pretty lacking there.

      We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Justice Louis D. Brandeis

      by dsteffen on Sun Mar 13, 2011 at 05:38:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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