Coinciding with the choir's visit Georgia Southern University brought a group of 14 student researchers to look into these Irish-US ties more deeply
On Friday 17th June members of the WIT Choral Programme joined with the Savannah Children’s Choir from Georgia, USA for a shared performance at Christ Church Cathedral, Waterford. The event was held in aid of St Brigid's Family & Community Centre and celebrated the strong links between Savannah and Ireland's South East.
Georgia Southern University professor, Dr Howard Keeley, has been visiting Ireland and researching these links for the last number of years. This year, coinciding with the choir’s visit, Dr. Keeley brought a group of 14 student researchers to look into these ties more deeply. The team has been delving through archives in Waterford City, Wexford and WIT and unearthed some interesting connections and stories.
As well as being trated to a feast of wonderful music, audience members at the concert learned of the ships made and sailed by the Graves family in Waterford which brought many from the South East to Savannah. Indeed it seems we may be be passing by connections to Savannah every day without realising. Such an example is of the Waterford native and missonary, Edward Barron, who was lauded for his work in Africa and America during the middle of the 19th century, in particular his time in Savannah during the outbreak of Yellow Fever, and whose bust is in displayed in the Cathedral on Barronstrand Street.
Of the concert Dr Keeley went on to say: Many thanks to the WIT choristers for showing so much positivity and comradery on Friday night. Having the two choirs together was wonderful, and I hope that you'll consider a visit to Savannah at some point!