Loneliness and poverty made female arrivals to US turn to sex work, crime and alcohol, say historians

The millions of Irish girls and women who emigrated to North America in the 19th and early 20th centuries tend to be remembered, if at all, as domestic servants, cooks, wives and mothers.

A reputation for diligence and rectitude cast them as the unsung heroes of a diaspora that went on to conquer US business and politics.

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