Located in Battery Park City, the Irish Hunger Memorial stands on a half-acre site at the corner of Vesey Street and North End Avenue. Designed by artist Brian Tolle, the memorial represents a rural Irish landscape with an abandoned stone cottage, stone walls, fallow potato fields and the flora of the north Connacht wetlands. In addition to raising public awareness of the events that lead to the Great Irish Hunger and Migration of 1845-1852, the memorial is intended to serve as a catalyst for addressing current issues of world hunger.
Elevated on a limestone plinth, the memorial contains stones from each of Ireland's 32 counties. Along the base are bands of texts separated by layers of imported Kilkenny limestone which is more than 300 million years old and contains fossils from the ancient Irish seabed. From the western or river end, you approach the memorial through a formal ceremonial tunneled passageway which ends inside a ruined fieldstone cottage that was brought to New York from the townland of Carradoogan near Attymass, County Mayo. It was disassembled in Ireland and rebuilt in New York in accordance with guidelines by the Irish Historic Trust. Stroll along the winding path up the incline where you will arrive at a cantilevered overlook 25 feet above the pavement. This overlook offers views of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, emblems of America’s welcome to all immigrant people. The size of the cultivated area of the memorial, one-quarter of an acre, is significant. In 1847, Sir William Gregory proposed an additional clause to the Irish Poor Law stipulating that no person occupying land of more than one-quarter acre was eligible for any relief. The law had a devastating effect and contributed to the suffering as many of the starving were poor and owned a half-acre, forcing them to abandon their homes in order to obtain food. The unroofed abandoned cottage reminds visitors of the stark choice between survival and holding home and hearth.
The landscape conveys the sense of a rural, abandoned countryside in the west of Ireland. It is not manicured like a park or garden. Planted with some 62 species of Irish plants and grasses, many grown from Irish seeds, the landscape will change with the seasons, the years and its encounter with the local environment.
Now for the puzzle. You can find and log this cache at approximately the same distance from Corcaigh and An Longfort and three times that distance from Ciarraí. Once you've picked up the clues you'll be at GZ. You need not travel any place south of Gaillimh.
***Please do not jump any fences as it is forbidden and there is no need to disturb the landscape.***
So make the trip to Manhattan's Emerald Isle and visit this beautiful memorial garden. Take in the scenery and views.
Remember to bring a pen/pencil.
2009 Nominee for Most Scenic / Best Hike