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A wee but heavy bit o' the Auld Sod is on its way to Buffalo, adding substantial weight to local efforts for an Irish Famine memorial on the city waterfront.

Thirty-two rough stones, taken from a 19th-century Irish quay built as a famine-relief project, were shipped from Ireland Oct. 15 and are expected Thursday in Montreal, en route to Western New York.

"They'll be here in Buffalo on Monday," said John Carney of the Western New York Irish Famine Commemoration Committee.

The stones, one for each county of Ireland, will be placed in storage. They will be installed next year as a low wall surrounding a tall monolith and a field of small memorial stones.

The monument will commemorate both the Great Famine 150 years ago and the wave of Irish emigration that sent millions to the United States. The deadline for commemorative inscriptions on the memorial stones is Dec. 31.

The committee's next meeting is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Dec. 3 in the Buffalo Irish Center, 245 Abbott Road.

Information requests or donations payable to the WNY Irish Famine Commemoration Committee may be sent to Craig Speers, committee treasurer, 140 Winston Road, Buffalo 14216.

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