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Henebery Spirits - CA

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Matthew Henebery was born in County Kilkenny, Ireland, on September 8, 1834 to Nicholas and Anastasia Henebery. He was one of seven children. His father was a farmer, and both father and mother instilled the values of hard work, honesty, and integrity in Matthew and his six siblings. In 1849, when Matthew was 14 years old, the Henebery family was forced to make a life changing decision. The late 1840’s marked a time of great suffering for Ireland- The Great Potato Famine. At the time, a large portion of Ireland’s population was dependent exclusively on the potato for their diet. The famine occurred because a plant disease caused the potato crops to fail for several years in a row. The Irish natives called it an Gorta Mór meaning “the Great Hunger,” it was also referred to as an Drochshaol meaning “the bad life.” Over 1 million people died of starvation and another million (like the Heneberys) fled the country. In 1849, with their backs against the wall due to mass starvation, the proud and spirited Heneberys made the decision to leave their homeland. Although the Henebery family heavily experienced an Gorta Mór (“the great hunger”) they refused to accept an Drochshaol (“the bad life”) and knew it was time to trust the abilities and spirit of the family, and migrate to a promising new land.

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