As I continue to research and write the forgotten stories of the Gaspe Coast, I have come across some that give me a lot to think about.
One of these stories is about a woman who came to the Gaspe as a young bride.
She had left her family in Ireland to follow her husband here because he had told her that they would be able to have a better life.
She had found it difficult to leave but because she had married him, she had no choice but to travel across the sea to an unknown country, where she knew no one.
Times were hard for the young couple and the only work he could find was on a merchant ship that travelled back and forth between Canada and England.
It meant that the young woman found herself alone for months at a time trying to bring up her children in this harsh climate.
She became self-sufficient because that was the only way to survive. As the years went by, her husband spent more time away, sometimes only returning once a year. And then he never returned at all and she never knew what had happened to him.
She missed her family in Ireland and wanted to go home but she didn’t have the money to return. So she stayed here on the Gaspe and despite her struggles, she managed to bring up her 10 children alone.
According to the story, which was passed down through the many generations of her children, she did get to go home again when she was 92 years old and she was laid to rest beside her mother and father on her Irish soil.