Our Class Trip to The Jeanie Johnston

Our Class Trip to The Jeanie Johnston

On Thursday the 12th of March 2015 Ms Nestor’s fifth class went to see and go to the Jeanie Johnston because we won the line up twice in a row. We got there at 11:00 on our school bus and the bus driver was Joanne. The Jeanie Johnston is in the River Liffey in town. When we got there our tour lady was Laura and she brought us on to the ship.

She told us the ship was used to transport people to Quebec in Canada, England and America. She also told us the Jeanie Johnston was built in 1847. It was built as a cargo ship to carry wood to Ireland but they decided to let people on the ship when it was empty going back to these countries. The ship we were on was a replica.

Then we went down stairs to learn about life on the Jeanie Johnston. When we got downstairs the room was dull because they hadn’t got any normal lights they only had red little lights. These would have been oil lamps at the time of the Famine and there was no sunlight able to enter this room. The lady said we could sit on the bench or on the bed beside mannequins so me my two friends Amy and Megan sat on the bed. At first I was scared of the mannequins but then I got used to them and it was really interesting hearing facts about them.

The lady said 24 beds could fit on the Jeanie Johnston. Usually a few people would sleep in one bed and there were bunk beds. If you slept on the bottom bunk bed the one on top could fall down because the beds were so old. She told us the story about one of the mannequins who was moving to Canada with his 11 kids. His wife had died giving birth to their last child and the man got on the ship free because they needed men to do work in Canada.

There was a doctor too which was unusual for a famine ship. He had a big box full of medicines because to treat the sick people. The conditions on the ship were horrible and they had to get sick in a bucket where people also went to the toilet. The doctor was always down the back in a dark corner. Sometimes the doctor had to let the people out of their bed so they can get fresh air on the decking but sometimes the doctor would not let them out if the weather was too bad. People had to share a bucket between 3 or 4 people to go toilet or get sick in. One of the most amazing facts about the Jeanie Johnston is that not one person died on board the ship.

On our way back up the stairs there was a separate room which was the captain’s bedroom. He had a separate room to everyone in case he got sick and nobody would be able to take over for him.

Then when we got up stairs the lady brought us to the front of the ship under the cover because it was raining outside. There is a statue of a lady on the very front of the shit but nobody knows who it is. Unfortunately at the back of the ship there is construction work going on at the moment so we could not see the wheel to control the ship.

It came up to the time when we had to leave. We all thanked the lady for telling us facts about the ships and for bringing us on it. When we were off the ship the whole class got a photo in front of the ship with our teacher.

Then our bus driver came back from her lunch so when we got back on to the bus we headed back to the school. We had our lunch on the way back because the weather was too bad to have it in town but I still had a lovely day on my trip and I learned lots of interesting facts.

By Holly

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