“St Patrick’s Day – Irish Colleens” is now available to stream for free via the Irish Film Institute’s IFI Archive Player.

This short newsreel (location unknown, 1914-1918) shows two Irish girls pinning sprigs of shamrock on the caps and coats of soldiers.

There are Irish soldiers from various regiments including Connaught Rangers, Royal Artillery to Fusiliers.

Some of the men are wearing bandages and appear to be wounded while others casually stand by having a cigarette.

“St Patrick’s Day - Irish Colleens” is a part of the Irish Film Institute’s Irish Independence Film Collection and the Saint Patrick’s Day Collection.

The Irish Film Institute’s Saint Patrick’s Day Collection

For centuries, Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, has been revered as the founder of Christianity in Ireland. Today, his feast day on March 17th is a day inextricably associated with national identity as Ireland and Irishness are celebrated throughout the world in a colourful slate of cultural and religious events.

This varied compendium of films illustrates St Patrick’s life and legacy, and the traditions that honour him. It includes early newsreels of shamrock-bearing colleens during World War 1; filmlets about St Patrick’s childhood haunts in Co Down and Croagh Patrick, site of annual pilgrimage; a record of nationwide activities during the Patrician Year in 1961; historical pageants in the 1950s; colourful parades in the 1980s; and a melodious collection of St Patrick’s staples sung by Bing Crosby and friends.

The Irish Film Institute is delighted to present this archive collection for, as the narrator tells us in Saint Patrick’s Country (1935), “though Patrick died more than 1600 years ago, his memory is still fresh in Irish hearts.”

“St Patrick’s Day – Irish Colleens” is published here thanks to the Irish Film Institute (IFI), who IrishCentral has partnered up with to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collection entails. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.

To watch more historic Irish footage, visit the IFI Archive Player, the Irish Film Institute’s virtual viewing room that provides audiences around the globe free, instant access to Irish heritage preserved in the IFI Irish Film Archive. Irish Culture from the last century is reflected through documentaries, animation, adverts, amateur footage, feature films, and much more. You can also download the IFI Archive Player App for free on iPhone, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Roku.

IrishCentral has partnered up with the IFI to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collections entail. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.