Overall the record of ships departing Newry for New York reveals a remarkably low level of mortality in transit (twenty-three in all). It is all the more notable therefore, that the sailing of the Sarah Parker in January 1850 should have had such tragic results, with the death of eleven infants aged one and under.
And yet in some respects the prospects for a ‘comfortable’ and safe journey at first seemed favourable.
The caption accompanying this article describes the ship: a ‘First Class’ barque, the 1200 ton Sarah Parker boasted a reputation of being a ‘beautiful ship .. upwards of Seven Feet between decks, Roomy and well Ventilated’. Passengers were assured that in accordance with the new Passengers’ Act they would be supplied with ’10 lbs Breadstuffs, 2 oz Tea,