John F. Kennedy photo

Remarks on the Quay at New Ross.

June 27, 1963

Mr. Mayor:

I first of all would like to introduce two members of my family who came here with us: my sister Eunice Shriver, and to introduce another of my sisters, Jean Smith. I would like to have you meet American Ambassador McCloskey, who is with us. And I would like to have you meet the head of the American labor movement, whose mother and father were born in Ireland, George Meany, who is traveling with us. And then I would like to have you meet the only man with us who doesn't have a drop of Irish blood, but who is dying to--the head of the protocol of the United States, Angler Biddle Duke.

See, Angle, how nice it is, just to be Irish!

I am glad to be here. It took 115 years to make this trip, and 6,000 miles, and three generations. But I am proud to be here and I appreciate the warm welcome you have given to all of us.

When my great grandfather left here to become a cooper in East Boston, he carried nothing with him except two things: a strong religious faith and a strong desire for liberty. I am glad to say that all of his great grandchildren have valued that inheritance.

If he hadn't left, I would be working over at the Albatross Company, or perhaps for John V. Kelly. In any case, we are happy to be back here.

About 50 years ago, an Irishman from New Ross traveled down to Washington with his family, and in order to tell his neighbors how well he was doing, he had his picture taken in front of the White House and said, "This is our summer home. Come and see us." Well, it is our home also in the winter, and I hope you will come and see us.

Thank you.

Note: The President spoke at 11:30 a.m. His opening words "Mr. Mayor" referred to Andrew Minihan, Chairman of the New Ross Urban Council. He later referred to business establishments of New Ross which he could see across the quay and behind the crowd.

John F. Kennedy, Remarks on the Quay at New Ross. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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