The National Famine Memorial, a coffin ship & skeletons in the rigging

The National Famine Memorial sits at the foot of Croagh Patrick and commands panoramic views over the landscape of Clew Bay. This striking sculpture was crafted by John Behan and commemorates the millions who perished during the Great Famine of 1845 – 52. It depicts a “coffin ship” with skeleton bodies in the rigging. Coffin ships was a term used to describe the horrendously overcrowded boats which left our shores with emigrants fleeing the famine in dire and unhygienic conditions. The monument was unveiled by President Mary Robinson in 1997.