PIQUA — The Johnston Farm Friends Council is bringing Mike Follin to the Fort Piqua Plaza for “Saints Preserve Us! The Irish In America” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 18. Follin will tell the story of Shawn O’Shaughnessy, an Irish immigrant who comes to America to find his fortune for his family in the “Land of Golden Opportunity.”
Shawn’s story is not unlike many others, including Piqua’s own John Johnston, who as a Scot-Irish immigrant, came to America to seek his fortune. This is also much like the story of the Irish immigrants who came to Piqua, founded St. Mary’s Catholic Church, and helped bring the canal era to Piqua as well as the rest of Ohio.
The story of Shawn and his family is one that Follin has drawn from numerous Irish diaries. The audience will take a ride on an emotional rollercoaster as the family journeys across the Atlantic Ocean only to find that while there were jobs around every corner in New York City, so was the sign “Irish Need Not Apply.” Eventually, the O’Shaughnessy family does find the land of opportunity that they sought in Ohio.
The evening is sponsored by the Johnston Farm Friends Council. The proceeds from the evening will help support the educational programming at the Johnston Farm & Indian Agency throughout 2019.
Reservations are $30 or $25 for Friends Council and Ohio History Connection members. Reserve your spot by calling (937) 773-2522 by Monday, April 15.