Irish Immigrants

Irish Immigrant railroad workers sitting in front of a railroad station.
Irish immigrants in front of railroad station in Laramie, Wyoming.

Andrew J. Russell

Between 8,000 and 10,000 Irish immigrants made significant contributions to the development of modern America by helping to complete the transcontinental railroad. The potato famine in the mid-1840s, rising rent for farmland, the precarious nature of the linen industry, and increasingly dire economic conditions were all factors that prompted them to leave Ireland. In America, Irish immigrants faced discrimination due to their religion, language, and lack of work experience. Irish railroad workers were frequently segregated and housed in cramped railroad cars, and were paid less than native-born Americans.

Last updated: August 18, 2023

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Brigham City, UT 84302


435 471-2209 x429

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