The first 1916 Garden of Remembrance in the U.S. has opened in Springfield, Massachusetts. 

Congressman Richard Neal has spearheaded the development of the garden as part of his commitment to continuous acknowledgement of the strong cultural links between Ireland and the United States, one of the only countries to be mentioned in the 1916 proclamation. 

The 1916 Gardens of Remembrance are a nationwide initiative in Ireland and for the Irish Diaspora, designed to ensure public engagement on a local and global level to recognize the centenary celebrations of the 1916 Easter Rising. 

Specially developed by well-known Irish landscape artist Diarmuid Gavin and Senator Mark Daly, the majority of County Councils across Ireland have included 1916 Remembrance Gardens under their 2016 Centenary Programmes. 

“Glór na Cásca” are behind the Gardens of Remembrance Initiative. The group comprises of members from all political parties along with trade union, cultural and Irish language representatives and descendants of those who were involved in the 1916 Easter Rising.

"I can think of no more appropriate way to commemorate the events which led to the formation of our state than by the creation of a garden which will symbolize independence, creativity, growth and beauty. The Springfield Irish garden will be a wonderful addition and we are delighted that the long and enduring links between Ireland and the United States will be reaffirmed,” said Gavin.

Senator Daly, Member of the Governments All Party Consultation Group on Commemorations, said: “I am honored to be part of these celebrations marking the 1916 Rising. Springfield is a city that shares many connections with Ireland so I am delighted that it is the first city in America to launch their 1916 Garden of Remembrance.”

Seven garden templates have been designed by Gavin with each garden containing three elements; seven trees to represent the seven signatures of the proclamation, a replication of the 1916 proclamation and an Irish Flag.

Source: Press Release