Pathé newsreel footage shows St. Patrick’s Day celebration in full swing in Drumshanbo, County Leitrim in 1953.

The video, titled ‘Dance at Cross Roads,’ shows a procession of horse carts and walkers, including girls in traditional costumes, waving flags on their way to the dance.

In 1953, the charming town of Drumshanbo, nestled in County Leitrim, Ireland, witnessed a vibrant and jubilant St. Patrick's Day celebration like no other. The occasion was immortalized by Pathé Newsreel, a renowned news agency known for capturing and documenting significant events of the time.

Through their footage, we can relive the magic of that day, as the community came together to celebrate Ireland's patron saint in true Irish style. Let's step back in time and delve into the joyous scenes depicted in the Pathé Newsreel of the 1953 St. Patrick's Day celebration in Drumshanbo.

The traditional Irish dancing takes place at the crossroads, while some locals look on.

“On goes the céilí until late in the afternoon,” says the announcer. “Plenty of singing and dancing to give an old fashioned twist to the ever new St Patrick’s Day.”

Pathé Newsreel, founded by Charles Pathé in France in 1896, was a pioneer in capturing and distributing news through film. Their newsreels were shown in cinemas, providing audiences with the latest happenings from around the world. The Pathé cameras were renowned for their ability to document historical moments, both significant and heartwarming, which have become invaluable records of the past.

This Pathé newsreel footage captured not only the vibrant celebrations but also the profound significance of St. Patrick's Day in Drumshanbo. It was more than just a day of revelry; it was a testament to the enduring cultural heritage of Ireland and a reminder of the strong sense of community that bound the people of Drumshanbo together.

H/T Leitrim Observer, Forgotten Ireland

* Originally published in November 2017. Updated in July 2023.