Presentation Title

Savannah Irish Neighborhoods in 1860

Location

Room 2901

Session Format

Paper Presentation

Research Area Topic:

Humanities & Social Sciences - Psychology, Sociology & Political Science

Abstract

Using the emergent ethnicity theory (Yancey, 1976), which establishes that unique ethnic groups are created from social interactions and institutions rather than cultural heritage, this paper is a spatial analysis of Savannah's ethnic Irish neighborhoods. Savannah's history was shaped uniquely by Irish immigrants who were actively involved in politics, economics, and social organizations. The 1850s were the height of Irish immigration to Savannah, but it is in 1860 that an image of a vital, thriving city on the eve of the Civil War is captured. This paper serves to examine the quantitative factors of the Irish in Savannah in 1860 and describe the localized neighborhood effects. I have constructed a database utilizing the 1860 Chatham County Census and city directories to analyze career, age, sex, place of origin, and residence district. At the neighborhood level of statistical analysis, this investigation will demonstrate the spatial and cultural distribution of the Irish in Savannah. The study will investigate two historical Irish neighborhoods, Old Fort, and Yamacraw; these neighborhoods represent a juxtaposition of class and social structure. Preliminary findings suggest housing patterns demonstrate a high correlation with Irish national and county origin. Finally, this study and the use of emergent ethnicity theory may provide a model for other historical ethnic communities or present day transnational communities, such as the Syrian refugees in Europe.

Presentation Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

Start Date

4-16-2016 4:00 PM

End Date

4-16-2016 5:00 PM

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Apr 16th, 4:00 PM Apr 16th, 5:00 PM

Savannah Irish Neighborhoods in 1860

Room 2901

Using the emergent ethnicity theory (Yancey, 1976), which establishes that unique ethnic groups are created from social interactions and institutions rather than cultural heritage, this paper is a spatial analysis of Savannah's ethnic Irish neighborhoods. Savannah's history was shaped uniquely by Irish immigrants who were actively involved in politics, economics, and social organizations. The 1850s were the height of Irish immigration to Savannah, but it is in 1860 that an image of a vital, thriving city on the eve of the Civil War is captured. This paper serves to examine the quantitative factors of the Irish in Savannah in 1860 and describe the localized neighborhood effects. I have constructed a database utilizing the 1860 Chatham County Census and city directories to analyze career, age, sex, place of origin, and residence district. At the neighborhood level of statistical analysis, this investigation will demonstrate the spatial and cultural distribution of the Irish in Savannah. The study will investigate two historical Irish neighborhoods, Old Fort, and Yamacraw; these neighborhoods represent a juxtaposition of class and social structure. Preliminary findings suggest housing patterns demonstrate a high correlation with Irish national and county origin. Finally, this study and the use of emergent ethnicity theory may provide a model for other historical ethnic communities or present day transnational communities, such as the Syrian refugees in Europe.