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This show opens with the fascinating story of communities in Mayo who resorted to piracy to survive in 1847. This is only a prelude however before we look at two pivotal events later in the year.

After two years of starvation, the only election held during the Great Famine took place in August 1847. In some constituencies this poll was more like a blood sport than modern elections.

That summer was also decisive because no sooner were the ballots counted than the island became fixated on an even more important test – the harvest. If this failed the future was bleak but many had reason to be hopeful…

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A Doomed Land? Piracy, Elections and the 1847 Harvest (The Great Famine Part XV)

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