Students Alaina Puleo and Jonathan Brown search for clues about Lowell’s early Irish settlers.
Several lucky UMass Lowell students took part in an archeological dig at St. Patrick's church that unearthed fascinating findings, giving us a glimpse into the life of Lowell's early Irish settlers. The dig is part of a partnership between UMass Lowell and Queens University, Belfast, that began in summer of 2010 and took place again in August 2011 for an expanded search of the site. The 2011 multidiscipline team of undergraduate and graduate students—lead by Frank Talty, co-director of the University's Center for Irish Partnerships—also traveled to Northern Ireland after their dig to excavate the area around Hugh Cummiskey’s homestead. Cummiskey, who was born in 1789 in Crossan in County Tyrone and emigrated to America in 1817, led 30 Irishmen from Boston to Lowell for work.