PRESIDENT KENNEDY'S ST. PATRICK'S DAY MESSAGE
"The observance of St. Patrick's Day is almost as old in America as the Irish themselves, & some say they arrived in the 6th century.
It is a day of dedication....as purely American as it is Irish...recalling for all that ours is a nation founded, sustained &...preserved in the cause of liberty.
None more than the Irish can attest the power of that cause once it has gripped a nation's soul.
It is well to love liberty, for it demands much of those who would live by it. Liberty is not content to share mankind. John Boyle O'Reilly, who came to Boston by way of a penal colony in Western Australia, understood this as few men have.
'Freedom,' he wrote, 'is more than a resolution--he is not free who is free alone.'
To those who in our time have lost their freedom, or who through the ages have never won it, there is a converse to this message. No one--in the darkest cell, the remotest prison, under the most unyielding tyranny--is ever entirely lost in bondage while there are yet free men in the world.
As this be our faith, let it also be our pride--& to all who share it, I send the greetings of this day."
John F. Kennedy
President of the United States
March 17, 1962
MARCH 17, 1961
JFK PRESENTED IRISH BOWL ON ST. PATTY'S DAY
Washington, D.C. (JFK+50)The ambassador of Ireland, Thomas J. Kiernan, presented President Kennedy a ceremonial bowl of shamrock in honor of St. Patrick's Day today at the White House.
JFK Receives Irish Shamrock Bowl
March 17, 1961
JFK Library Photo
Joining in the festivities was John E. Fogarty, Rhode Island congressman who co-sponsored an Irish unification proclamation with JFK.
The ambassador also gave JFK a hand-printed scroll displaying the KENNEDY coat of arms signed by Gerald Slevin, the Chief Herald of Ireland.*
*The President was so busy that day he forgot it was St. Patty's Day. He had to have John 'Muggsie' O'Leary get him a green tie.
"JFK's First St. Patrick's Day in the White House," by Michael P. Quinlin, March 17, 2011.