Want that quintessential Irish experience in America? Here are some suggestions on where to go to take in the history and the heroism of the Irish contribution to the US.
1. Be present at a Notre Dame football game.
Until you have actually sat in the stadium in South Bend with the green jackets and sweaters everywhere and heard the Fighting Irish song being played, you have missed a great Irish-American experience.
2. Ellis Island
Though some folks find it too modern in its makeover, there are still haunting moments as you flick through the photo files starting with Annie Moore in 1892. This is where the Irish dreams in America started out for millions.
3. Fenway Park in Boston
Fenway Park in Boston was built by Charles Logue (1858–1919), an Irish immigrant to the United States who founded the Charles Logue Building Company. It constructed dozens of churches in and around Boston, as well as the Park. Eamon de Valera spoke there before 50,000 Irish supporters in 1919, a larger crowd than attended the Red Sox World Series in 1918.
4. JFK Library, Boston
Where the Irish famine journey ended with the election of the only Irish Catholic ever to become President of the United States. Magnificent exhibition of Kennedy’s life and times.
5. World Trade Center
One third of the firefighters and cops who gave their lives saving others were Irish American. The new museum has many of the heroic details of how they gave their all to save lives.
6. Givens' Irish Castle
In Chicago is Givens' Irish Castle. Certainly the oddest sight in Chicago's Far Southwest Side, this building is a replica of castle on Ireland's River Dee, built by a nostalgic and wealthy Irish American for his fiancee in 1885. Givens’ wife-to-be reportedly died before seeing her castle, but her ghost is said to walk up the hill from 103rd Street to the castle entrance on Longwood Drive
7. Irish Famine Memorial, New York
A ruined Irish cottage brought brick by brick from Mayo and a quarter acre of an Irish field evoke the desolation and deprivation of the Great Hunger even in the middle of Manhattan.
8. Monument to fallen Irish at Gettysburg
The Irish played an incredible role in the most vicious and vital battle of the American Civil War. The memorial to those Irish who fell is there on the battlefield as a reminder to everyone of their role in the battle against slavery.
9. Butte, Montana
Butte, Montana, is by many measures the most Irish place in America. It is where entire villages emigrated from Ireland to work the copper mines. Nearby is the site of Custer's Last Stand where Irish-born captain Myles Keogh played a hero's role.
10. Murphys, California
Set up by two Irish brothers from Wicklow, Murphys, California, was the major departure town for the Gold Rush back in 1849. There are still many Irish touches to the picturesque area and many descendants of the Irish who came west looking to make their fortunes.
Are there any we missed? Let us know in the comments section.