History of St Patrick’s Day

by | Social

 St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated annually on March 17, the anniversary of his death in the fifth century. The Irish have observed this day as a religious holiday for over 1,000 years. On St. Patrick’s Day, which falls during the Christian season of Lent, Irish families would traditionally attend church in the morning and celebrate in the afternoon. Lenten prohibitions against the consumption of meat were waived and people would dance, drink and feast–on the traditional meal of Irish bacon and cabbage.

 

ST. PATRICK’S DEATH AND THE FIRST ST. PATRICK’S DAY PARADE

St Patricks DaySaint Patrick, who lived during the fifth century, is the patron saint and national apostle of Ireland. Born in Roman Britain, he was kidnapped and brought to Ireland as a slave at the age of 16. He later escaped, but returned to Ireland and was credited with bringing Christianity to its people. In the centuries following Patrick’s death (believed to have been on March 17, 461), the mythology surrounding his life became ever more ingrained in the Irish culture: Perhaps the most well known legend is that he explained the Holy Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) using the three leaves of a native Irish clover, the shamrock.

Did You Know?
More than 100 St. Patrick’s Day parades are held across the United States; New York City and Boston are home to the largest celebrations.

Since around the ninth or 10th century, people in Ireland have been observing the Roman Catholic feast day of St. Patrick on March 17. Interestingly, however, the first parade held to honor St. Patrick’s Day took place not in Ireland but in the United States. On March 17, 1762, Irish soldiers serving in the English military marched through New York City. Along with their music, the parade helped the soldiers reconnect with their Irish roots, as well as with fellow Irishmen serving in the English army.

 

GROWTH OF ST. PATRICK’S DAY CELEBRATIONS

Over the next 35 years, Irish patriotism among American immigrants flourished, prompting the rise of so-called “Irish Aid” societies like the Friendly Sons of Saint Patrick and the Hibernian Society. Each group would hold annual parades featuring bagpipes (which actually first became popular in the Scottish and British armies) and drums.

In 1848, several New York Irish Aid societies decided to unite their parades to form one official New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Today, that parade is the world ‘s oldest civilian parade and the largest in the United States, with over 150,000 participants. Each year, nearly 3 million people line the 1.5-mile parade route to watch the procession, which takes more than five hours. Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and Savannah also celebrate the day with parades involving between 10,000 and 20,000 participants each.

 

THE IRISH IN AMERICA

Up until the mid-19th century, most Irish immigrants in America were members of the Protestant middle class. When the Great Potato Famine hit Ireland in 1845, close to 1 million poor and uneducated Irish Catholics began pouring into America to escape starvation. Despised for their alien religious beliefs and unfamiliar accents by the American Protestant majority, the immigrants had trouble finding even menial jobs. When Irish Americans in the country’s cities took to the streets on St. Patrick’s Day to celebrate their heritage, newspapers portrayed them in cartoons as drunk, violent monkeys.

The American Irish soon began to realize, however, that their large and growing numbers endowed them with a political power that had yet to be exploited. They started to organize, and their voting block, known as the “green machine,” became an important swing vote for political hopefuls. Suddenly, annual St. Patrick’s Day parades became a show of strength for Irish Americans, as well as a must-attend event for a slew of political candidates. In 1948, President Harry S. Truman attended New York City ‘s St. Patrick’s Day parade, a proud moment for the many Irish Americans whose ancestors had to fight stereotypes and racial prejudice to find acceptance in the New World.

 

THE CHICAGO RIVER DYED GREEN ON ST. PATRICK’S DAY

As Irish immigrants spread out over the United States, other cities developed their own traditions. One of these is Chicago’s annual dyeing of the Chicago River green. The practice started in 1962, when city pollution-control workers used dyes to trace illegal sewage discharges and realized that the green dye might provide a unique way to celebrate the holiday. That year, they released 100 pounds of green vegetable dye into the river–enough to keep it green for a week! Today, in order to minimize environmental damage, only 40 pounds of dye are used, and the river turns green for only several hours.

Although Chicago historians claim their city’s idea for a river of green was original, some natives of Savannah, Georgia (whose St. Patrick’s Day parade, the oldest in the nation, dates back to 1813) believe the idea originated in their town. They point out that, in 1961, a hotel restaurant manager named Tom Woolley convinced city officials to dye Savannah’s river green. The experiment didn’t exactly work as planned, and the water only took on a slight greenish hue. Savannah never attempted to dye its river again, but Woolley maintains (though others refute the claim) that he personally suggested the idea to Chicago’s Mayor Richard J. Daley.

 

ST. PATRICK’S DAY CELEBRATIONS AROUND THE WORLD

Today, people of all backgrounds celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, especially throughout the United States, Canada and Australia. Although North America is home to the largest productions, St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated in many other locations far from Ireland, including Japan, Singapore and Russia.

In modern-day Ireland, St. Patrick’s Day was traditionally been a religious occasion. In fact, up until the 1970s, Irish laws mandated that pubs be closed on March 17. Beginning in 1995, however, the Irish government began a national campaign to use interest in St. Patrick’s Day to drive tourism and showcase Ireland and Irish culture to the rest of the world. Today, approximately 1 million people annually take part in Ireland ‘s St. Patrick’s Festival in Dublin, a multi-day celebration featuring parades, concerts, outdoor theater productions and fireworks shows.

 

Women Grants in The United States
A lot is being granted to the citizens of America in the name of grant scheme. Various categories of financial needs are being accomplished through these grants. Some of the most popular grants schemes ever are the grants for men, grants for women, grants...
Understanding Federal Grants (Part 2)
 In the last issue we talked about how the federal grant system works and how you can make it work for you. In this issue we are going talk about exactly who's eligible to apply for federal grant money. The simple fact is that almost everyone is eligible...
Run A Background Check When Applying for Jobs!
 Social media is everywhere in the air around us today. Hence it is natural for you to assume you can handpick and choose what you want your employees to see. Most people therefore imagine that once they clean up their Facebook wall and delete those...
Accepting Failure | Achieve Success
Everybody has a setback every once in a while, but it doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with you. In fact, accepting failure can be a great opportunity to learn your own limitations and boundaries, then push through them, and provide you with a...
The AHCA Impact on Medicare & Medicaid
The Impact on Medicare & Medicaid The repeal and replace legislation concerning the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, seems complicated for many consumers. Though it will likely see changes as it is debated in the Senate, the American Healthcare Act (AHCA)...
Self Help Works Too!
Self-Help Works Too! Government assistance serves as a great safety net for a lot of people. Unemployment, SNAP, Social Security Disability, and other benefits operate as a great way to prevent total financial collapse following negative life events. However, each of...
Lifeline Assistance Program
 There is now a program out there that can even help with your cell phone. The special government program called Lifeline Assistance that offers a free phone and minutes to those who qualify. Getting on the list is not very hard, but there are a few things...
HARP Eligibility and Assistance
 If your mortgage is making your financial life more difficult than you expected, you can get assistance through a program called HARP (Home Affordable Refinance Program). HARP eligibility is easy to determine as there are several factors that can affect...
Low Income Families and Educational Help
Low Income Families and Educational Help It is a common perception that only the most gifted students are eligible for grants and scholarships to get them through the final phases of their education, and this then gives rise to the popular thought that those residing...
“Believe in The Power of 3”
The number 3 is the first number to which the meaning “All” was given. It is the number of the whole as it contains the beginning, a middle, and an end. When you raise the number 3 to a second power, it simply magnifies everything you already have and...
Government Grants Exposed
You and I have heard it all before, the man with the funny jacket on late night TV telling us that the United States government gives out over 30 Billion dollars in grants every year. And if we want any of that for ourselves, all we have to do is send him...
Health Insurance Coverage Changes | ACHA
Healthcare reform tends to be tricky and complex as it attempts to find a common ground that is beneficial for all people. Burdened by the political firestorms that surround it, the new healthcare bill approved by the House of Representatives will...
Is Rent to Own Housing An Option?
Rent to own housing is a popular term that should be carefully considered. It can be an agreement between owner and seller to rent or lease a property until it is paid in full. The plan can work several different ways, some have zero deposits and no...
Finding Employment with Job Searches
Finding Employment with Job Searches Sometimes, life hits Americans hard. With ups and downs in the economy, it may be difficult to maintain consistent employment over a long period of time. Fortunately, there are options to help find a new job or career. In the...
Public Assistance Study
 According to a new public assistance study conducted by the University of Illinois and the University of California-Berkeley, a overwhelming majority of fast food worker's families are enrolled in one or more public assistance programs. These programs...
Section 8 Vouchers Less Likely to be Accepted
 About 300 less, that is the number in Nashville, TN. Since 2010 there has been 300 fewer Section 8 vouchers accepted throughout the Greater Nashville Area. Families are being kicked out of their apartments and housing because the owners have just decided...
Unpaid Wages Recovery Guide
Unpaid Wages Recovery Guide If you worked for it, then you should get it. Everyday can be a struggle and still come up on the short end of the stick. That is why you may be frustrated when you are not paid the money you are owed. Fortunately, there are many steps that...
How to Manage Credit Card Payments
Do you have issues paying off credit cards? Sometimes the interest itself can be an overwhelming monthly payment. We have gathered some information below from credit experts that can hopefully help you manage your payments and find a way out from under...
A VA Home Loan Can Help You Get Affordable Housing
 Ever since the housing market collapse, lenders have tightened the requirements to qualify for loans. If you don't have the required credit score or enough for a 20 percent down payment, it will be difficult to secure qualification for a conventional...
SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
The first nutrition assistance program was started in 1939. These types of programs were developed to help people during strenuous times and financial hardships. The program we know today (SNAP) was first introduced in 1961 as the Food Stamp Act that was...

Subscribe

Pin It on Pinterest

The More You Share. The More We Can Help!

Share these posts & pages with friends!