The Food Removal

From Cork harbor on one day in 1847 2 the AJAX steamed for England with 1,514 firkins of butter, 102 casks of pork, 44 hogsheads of whiskey, 844 sacks of oats, 247 sacks of wheat, 106 bales of bacon, 13 casks of hams, 145 casks of porter, 12 sacks of fodder, 28 bales of feathers, 8 sacks of lard, 296 boxes of eggs, 30 head of cattle, 90 pigs, 220 lambs, 34 calves and 69 miscellaneous packages. On November 14, 1848 3, sailed, from Cork harbor alone: 147 bales of bacon, 120 casks and 135 barrels of pork, 5 casks of hams, 149 casks of miscellaneous provisions (foodstuff); 1,996 sacks & 950 barrels of oats; 300 bags of flour; 300 head of cattle; 239 sheep; 9,398 firkins of butter; 542 boxes of eggs. On July 28, 1848 4; a typical day's food shipments from only the following four ports: from Limerick: the ANN, JOHN GUISE and MESSENGER for London; the PELTON CLINTON for Liverpool; and the CITY OF LIMERICK, BRITISH QUEEN, and CAMBRIAN MAID for Glasgow. This one-day removal of Limerick's food was of 863 firkins of butter; 212 firkins, 1,198 casks and 200 kegs of lard, 87 casks of ham; 267 bales of bacon; 52 barrels of pork; 45 tons and 628 barrels of flour; 4,975 barrels of oats and 1,000 barrels of barley. From Kilrush: the ELLEN for Bristol; the CHARLES G. FRYER and MARY ELLIOTT for London. This one-day removal was of 550 tons of County Clare's oats and 15 tons of its barley. From Tralee: the JOHN ST. BARBE, CLAUDIA and QUEEN for London; the SPOKESMAN for Liverpool. This one-day removal was of 711 tons of Kerry's oats and 118 tons of its barley. From Galway: the MARY, VICTORIA, and DILIGENCE for London; the SWAN and UNION for Limerick (probably for transshipment to England). This one-day removal was of 60 sacks of Co. Galway's flour; 30 sacks and 292 tons of its oatmeal; 294 tons of its oats; and 140 tons of its miscellaneous provisions (foodstuffs). British soldiers forcibly removed it from its starving Limerick, Clare, Kerry and Galway producers.
In Belmullet, Co. Mayo the mission of 151 soldiers 5 of the 49th Regiment, in addition to escorting livestock and crops to the port for export, was to guard a few tons of stored meal from the hands of the starving; its population falling from 237 to 105 between 1841 and 1851. Belmullet also lost its source of fish in January, 1849, when Britain's Coast Guard arrested its fleet of enterprising fishermen ten miles at sea in the act of off-loading flour from a passing ship. They were sentenced to prison and their currachs were confiscated.
The Waterford Harbor British army commissariat officer wrote to British Treasury Chief Charles Trevelyan on April 24, 1846; "The barges leave Clonmel once a week for this place, with the export supplies under convoy which, last Tuesday, consisted of 2 guns, 50 cavalry, and 80 infantry escorting them on the banks of the Suir as far as Carrick." While its people starved, the Clonmel district exported annually, along with its other farm produce, approximately 60,000 pigs in the form of cured pork.