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Archiver > IRELAND > 2003-06 > 1055100542


From: "Jean Rice" <>
Subject: [IRELAND] Irish Migration to New Zealand (1870-1914)
Date: Sun, 8 Jun 2003 12:32:12 -0700


SNIPPET: The Irish presence in NZ began with the earliest white settlement. Levels of migration of 2,000 persons or more annually characterized most of the period 1870 to 1914. Thereafter, Irish migration dropped sharply. In 1881, the Irish as a multigenerational ethnic group comprised about 18.9% of the pakeha (non-Maori) population. That was their high point and the proportion slid slowly downward thereafter, but as late as 1951 it was 16.7%. Roughly 3 out of 4 persons of Irish ethnicity were Catholic. In the period of heaviest Irish migration to NZ, 1870-1914, the provinces of Munster and Ulster was the largest sources of migrants. Roughly equal numbers came from each. Taken together, they supplied over 80% of Irish migrants. The level of ethnic consciousness of the Irish in NZ has never been very high. The most important Irish influence has been the century-long pressure of Irish-descended Catholics to have the government fully fund a religiously segregated s!
chool system. This battle, begun in the 1870s, was finally won in 1975.

-- Excerpt, "The Oxford Companion to Irish History," ed. S. J. Connolly, Prof. Irish History, Queen's University, Belfast.


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