Just outside the town of Omagh is the Ulster-American Folk Park, one of the best open-air museams of its kind. The Folk Park grew up around the restored boyhood home of judge Thomas Mellon (founder of the Pittsburgh banking dynasty). The Park’s permanent exhibition, called “Emigrants”, examines why two million people left Ulster for America during the 18th and 19th centuries. It also shows what became of them, following stories of both those who did well and those who did not make it, including the grim lives of indentured servants and the 15,000 Irish vagrants and convicts transported to North America in the mid-18th century.
The park has more than 30 historic buildings, some of them original, some replicas. There are settler homesteads, including that of John Joseph Hughes, the first Catholic Archbishop of New York, churches, a schoolhouse and a forge, some with craft displays, all with costumed interpretative guides.
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