During the Assisted Emigration Period of 1883-1884 many people, including whole families travelled great distances to the shores of Elly Bay, an inlet of Blacksod Bay, to embark on the Allan Line Steamships for Quebec and Boston, as the following extract entitled “Emigration from Ireland”. Mr Tukes Fund July 1883 confirms.
…………It was necessary in most cases, to bring the families coming from a distance by cart to Belmullet, where food and lodgings were provided.
The embarkations took place from the shores of Elly Bay – an inlet of Blacksod Bay – at which place the “Allan” Line had arranged for their steamers to call weekly, en route to Galway. The embarkation of the emigrants was naturally a cause for much anxiety, in as much as, although Blacksod Bay affords perhaps one of the finest anchorages in the West of Ireland – the Channel Squadron having lain there some few years since – still the shores of Elly Bay cannot be approached even at half-tide; added to which there is no pier, or in fact any accommodation for embarking the people. After due consultation with Staff-Captain Sutton, of H.M.S. “Seahorse” and Lieut. Beddoes, commanding the Coast-Guard, it was found that there was no alternative, except to arrange that the emigrants should be ready to embark on each occasion at high-water: the boats of the “Seahorse” and Coast-Guard taking them from the shore to the gunboat which then ran along side the “Allan” steamer……
Passenger List for S.S. Scandinavian.
Left Blacksod Bay April 22nd 1883 – Arrived Quebec May 3rd 1883
More information for ships leaving Blacksod Bay at this time available at Ionad Deirbhile, Visitor Centre, Eachleim, Blacksod, Co. Mayo
Ship Manifest images Source Library and Archives Canada