Where in Ireland, if anywhere, at the time of James Joyce (1882 – 1941), would "hoe" and "whore" sound similar enough to pun?
This question pertains to Does Joyce, in Finnegans Wake or Ulysses, link the sound form “hoe” to “whore”? from our sister site for Literature.
The first issue is rhoticity. While most of the English world is non-rhotic, according to Rhoticity in English - Ireland
The prestige form of English spoken in Ireland is rhotic and most regional accents are rhotic although some regional accents, particularly in the area around counties Louth and Cavan are notably non-rhotic and many non-prestige accents have touches of non-rhoticity. In Dublin, the traditional local dialect is largely non-rhotic, but the more modern varieties, referred to by Hickey as "mainstream Dublin English" and "fashionable Dublin English", are fully rhotic.
The Dublin non-rhoticity is why Joyce could successfully pun "haw" and "whore" in Ulysses. He heard the pun in real life (and of course all the non-rhotic English world would potentially get it).
But a "hoe"-"hoer"-"whore" pun requires non-rhoticity and a coincidence of vowel form pronunciations. That such a coincidence might occur somewhere in Ireland is suggested by my lay reading of Wikipedia’s Hiberno-English: Overview of pronunciation and phonology.
The modern day US "ho"-"whore" can only be traced back only to the sixties.