Day of the Seafarer: Captain John McCracken & the Poor House

2020-06-25T12:56:55+00:00

Captain John McCracken, father of Henry Joy and Mary Ann McCracken, was a seafarer by trade. It was said that the Belfast skyline of those days was broken only by the spire of the Poor House, the cupola of St Anne’s Church, the Market House belfry and when Captain McCracken’s ship was in port her masts, alongside other vessels, which were clearly visible from the opposite end of High Street. Captain McCracken operated in an age when most ship captains and crew members would have supplemented their income by smuggling. However, Capt McCracken took his ‘Custom House Oath’ very seriously, and [...]

Day of the Seafarer: Captain John McCracken & the Poor House2020-06-25T12:56:55+00:00

The Cholera Panedmic of 1832: An Easing of Restrictions

2020-06-15T11:48:06+00:00

As time passed the number of cases of cholera in the town of Belfast decreased, and the Poor House committee took steps to ease the tight restrictions that had been put in place a few months earlier. The Belfast Charitable Society initially allowed the residents of the Poor House out on Sundays in May 1832 so they could attend their respective places of worship. By the end of May the women of the Poor House who produced yarn were permitted to leave on Saturdays to sell their wares in town. However, this early relaxation did not last long and by 16th [...]

The Cholera Panedmic of 1832: An Easing of Restrictions2020-06-15T11:48:06+00:00

On This Day 1790 : 230 years since the death of Francis Joy

2020-06-10T11:03:32+00:00

Francis Joy, the maternal grandfather of Mary Ann McCracken, was born in Killead, Co. Antrim, in 1697, of prosperous farming stock. In due course he settled in Belfast as an attorney, and, while still a young man of twenty-four, married Margaret Martin, granddaughter of George Martin, Sovereign of the town. Francis was an able and enterprising person. By his own exertions and by inheritance he was comparatively wealthy, and he and his wife must have occupied a prominent place in the growing professional and mercantile community of the town. It was not, however, until he was forty years of age that [...]

On This Day 1790 : 230 years since the death of Francis Joy2020-06-10T11:03:32+00:00
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