The Committee is focused on exploring and understanding the impact of the Irish in America. The Committee is active in seeking opportunities to witness, close-up, the history and the influence of the Irish in America. Through oral presentations and field trips our members are active in reaching out for an experience that brings them closer to their heritage.
Visits to Gettysburg, the Five Points in Manhattan, the Hunger Museum in Connecticut, the Molly McGuires of Pennsylvania, Gaelic Park in the Bronx, the forgotten immigrant cemetery in the woods of Mine Hill Hibernia New Jersey…… all provide us the opportunity to share, collectively, the story of the Irish in America. Our purpose is to acknowledge our Heritage and strive to build a greater sense of pride in the accomplishments of “the Sons of Ireland”.
General George Washington, eager to bring some relief to his oppressed army at Morristown, New Jersey, issued this general order which commemorated St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, 1780. Not only was this an opportunity to give his soldiers a day off from their labors, but this order recognized the Irish people’s quest for freedom from British rule.
Head Quarters Morristown March 16th, 1780 General Order
The general congratulates the army on the very interesting proceedings of the parliament of Ireland and the inhabitants of that country which have been lately communicated; not only as they appear calculated to remove those heavy and tyrannical oppressions on their trade but to restore to a brave and generous people their ancient rights and freedom and by their operations to promote the cause of America.
Desirous of impressing upon the minds of the army, transactions so important in their nature, the general directs that all fatigue and working parties cease for tomorrow the seventeenth, a day held in particular regard by the people of the nation. At the same time that he orders this, he persuades himself that the celebration of the day will not be attended with the least rioting or disorder, the officers to be at their quarters in camp and the troops of the state line to keep within their own encampment.