About Irish American Heritage Month

Since 1991, Presidents of both political parties has designated March as Irish American Heritage Month to recognize the contribution that Irish immigrants and their descendants have played in the formation of our Nation. Among those contributions are nine signers of the Declaration of Independence, over twenty of Washington’s generals, the first man to hold a commission in the United States Navy, over 190,000 Irish born Americans who fought in the Civil War, pioneering women such as Nellie Bly and Christa McAuliffe, the inventor of the modern submarine and 253 Medal of Honor recipients who list the place of their birth as Ireland.

Despite this, the public is largely unaware of “Irish-American Heritage Month”. Should not the contributions of Irish American have the same national and institutional recognition as other ethnic cultural celebrations, such as; National African American History/Black History Month, National Hispanic Heritage Month, Asia/Pacific American Heritage Month? Yet while taxpayer financed institutions such as the Smithsonian, the Library of Congress and even the armed services actively celebrate and recognize the contribution of the groups mentioned above through special programs and materials, they continue to ignore the contributions of Irish Americans.

Full and appropriate national celebrations and recognition can only happen when all Americans take action. Irish Americans have done so much to shape and form virtually all areas of life in the United States throughout our country’s great history. We must act now and speak up in order to be heard.