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Charitable Objectives

‘Migration Stories’ in Garvagh

Migration Stories Flyer


A forthcoming conference in Garvagh will bring together three speakers to introduce the fascinating background to some of the ‘Migration Stories’ that have shaped the northern counties of Ulster and the New World.

The talks will illustrate how Counties Londonderry and Antrim have been a focus for families who were searching for a new home, either as settlers arriving from Scotland, or as emigrants sailing from our ports for American shores.

Brian Mitchell will be speaking on ‘Migration patterns from County Londonderry to North America’. His enlightening talk will consider the significance of the port of Londonderry in the story of Irish emigration. Brian will show how, from the late 1600s, in the age of the sailing ships, to the onset of the Second World War in 1939, when the last transatlantic steamer sailed from its quay, Londonderry was one of the principal emigration ports on this island.

Dr William Roulston will explore ‘Scottish Migration to the Bann Valley in the Seventeenth Century’. His talk will outline the movement of families from Scotland into the Bann Valley over the course of the 1600s. It will consider the factors that encouraged and hindered migration and will look at the records that can be used to explore family history during this era.

Keith Beattie will be revealing the events of 1772, when Reverend William Martin led over 1,000 Ulster Presbyterians in five ships to a new life in South Carolina. Records provide the names of many of these pioneering families and Keith will also reveal the stories of their difficult voyage and the tragedies they experienced in the unfolding revolution that shaped their lives in their new home.

The conference will be held in Main Street Presbyterian Church, Garvagh, on Saturday, 28 October, from 10.00am-12.30pm. Light refreshments will be provided.

Garvagh Museum can be contacted by phone at 07507787077 or by email at

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Registered with The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland NIC100280