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Minister Heather Humphreys’ Visit to Atlanta & New Orleans

Ireland’s Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD, will visit New Orleans over November 6-9, 2014 for International Famine Commemorations, following the designation of New Orleans by the Irish government as the host city for the annual commemorations this year. New Orleans was home to the largest Irish community in the old South in the years following the Famine and, to this day, the city retains a strong Irish-American identity. In New Orleans, Minister Humphreys will deliver the keynote address at a conference organised by Tulane University on “Ireland and New Orleans: From the Famine to Katrina – Stories of Recovery”. The Minister will also unveil a Famine exhibition at the new Irish Cultural Museum of New Orleans; lay a wreath at the New Basin Canal, which many Irish died digging in the nineteenth century; visit a school which received Irish government support in the wake of Hurricane Katrina; and participate in events organised by the Irish Network of New Orleans and the Ancient Order of Hibernians. The Minister will also speak about Ireland’s economic recovery at a business breakfast hosted by the Lieutenant Governor of Louisiana, Jay Dardenne. The website of the local Famine Commemorations Committee lists these events and more.

The Minister’s visit to New Orleans will be preceded by engagements in Atlanta on Wednesday November 5, including the launch of a new volume of the letters of Samuel Beckett at Emory University and an address to the Irish Chamber of Commerce of Atlanta on “Ireland and the cultural economy: the arts as a gateway to business and tourism”.