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    Mapping the Irish diaspora

    By Noreen Bowden | July 13, 2010

    One thing that I’d be really interested in seeing is a really good global map of the Irish diaspora. As far as I know, there isn’t one – but there are some interesting maps out there giving insight into various aspects of the diaspora that could inspire geography students to greater things!

    Name mapping is an interesting way to see where the Irish have gone. The “worldnames” map at allows users to pop in names and see the frequency of their occurrence around the world. Pop in, say, Sullivan, and you’ll see that it’s popular in Ireland, but also Australia, the US, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, Argentina, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

    The major drawback of the map is that is uses data for only 26 countries, and we know of course that Irish people are legion throughout the world (Liam Ferrie’s Irish Emigrant news service, for example, has recipients in over 150 countries).

    What other maps exist showing Irish populations around the world?

    Here’s one showing the distribution of the Irish population in the US of more than a century ago, using census data from 1872. (I found it on Wikipedia, where it’s noted that the data does not include the Scots-Irish.)

    And the US Census Bureau produces great maps using ethnic data – this one shows the comparative distribution of various ethnic groups through mapping the largest ancestral population in each county. The Irish are the top reported ancestry in surprisingly few counties, mainly focused in New York and New England.

    And here’s a detailed map of populations of Irish ancestry by US county.  For the sake of comparison, you can check out similar maps for other ethnic groups on this wonderful Wikipedia page.

    For a great example of a “micro-map” of the Irish diaspora, this map of the Boston Irish Heritage Trail is well worth a look.

    Are there any more good maps of the Irish diaspora out there? I’ll post more if I find them!

    Topics: Latest News | 1 Comment »

    One Response to “Mapping the Irish diaspora”

    1. St. Patrick’s Day Today, March 17 | Cabra College Library Blog Says:
      March 16th, 2015 at 11:59 pm

      […] Irish Diaspora: Global Irish Site and Wikipedia […]