Ghosts of Duffy's Cut The Irish Who Died Building America's Most Dangerous Stretch of Railroad

ISBN-10: 0275987272
ISBN-13: 9780275987275
Edition: 2006
List price: $55.00 Buy it from $32.70
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Description: In 1832, 57 Irish Catholic workers were brought to the United States to lay one of the most difficult miles of American railway, Duffy's Cut of the Pennsylvania Railroad. These men were chosen because, in the eyes of the railroad company that hired  More...

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Book details

List price: $55.00
Copyright year: 2006
Publisher: ABC-CLIO, LLC
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 240
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.408

In 1832, 57 Irish Catholic workers were brought to the United States to lay one of the most difficult miles of American railway, Duffy's Cut of the Pennsylvania Railroad. These men were chosen because, in the eyes of the railroad company that hired them, they were expendable. Deaths were common during the building of the railway, but this stretch was worse than most. When cholera swept the camp basic medical attention and community support was denied to them. In the end all 57 men--the entire work crew--died and were buried in a mass unmarked grave. Their families in Ireland were never notified about what had happened to them. The company did its best to cover up the incident, which was certainly one of the worst labor tragedies in U.S. history. Set against the backdrop of a rapidly industrializing America, this books tells the story of these men, the sacrifices they made, and the mistreatment that claimed their lives. The saga of Duffy's Cut focuses particularly on the Irish laborers who built the railroads. Who were these men? Who hired them? Why did they come? Perhaps most important, why did they die? Based on archaeological digs at the site and meticulous historical research, the authors argue that the annihilation of the work crew came about because of the extreme conditions of their employment, the prejudice of the surrounding community, and the vigilante violence that kept them isolated. In shedding light on this tragic chapter in American labor history, The Ghosts of Duffy's Cut also illuminates a dark side of America's rise to greatness.

WILLIAM E. WATSON is Associate Professor and Chair of History at Immaculata College in Pennsylvania. He is the author of Tricolor and Crescent (Praeger, 2003) and The Collapse of Communism in the Soviet Union (Greenwood, 1998).

J. FRANCIS WATSON has a Ph.D. in historical theology. His articles on religious history have appeared in various journals.

JOHN H. AHTES is Assistant Professor of History at Immaculata College. He has published in Irish Review.

EARL H. SCHANDELMEIER

Preface and Acknowledgments
The Genesis of the Philadelphia and Columbia Railroad
The Kingdom of Ireland in 1832 America in 1832
The Irish in Penn's Woods
The Story of Duffy's Cut "A Chastisement for the Sins of the People: "Cholera in Pennsylvania, 1832
Duffy's Cut Project: A Chronicle
A Virtual Tour of Duffy's Cut
Bibliography
Appendix
Index
Photo Sections

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