Wednesday, March 16, 2011

We Love A Parade!

~.~ The First St. Patrick's Day Parade ~.~

The first St. Patrick's Day parade took place not in Ireland but in the United States. Irish soldiers serving in the English military marched through New York City on March 17, 1762. Along with their music, the parade helped the soldiers reconnect with their Irish roots, as well as fellow Irishmen serving in the English army.
Over the next 35 years, Irish patriotism among American immigrants flourished, prompting the rise of so-called "Irish Aid" societies like the Friendly Sons of Saint Patrick and the Hibernian Society. Each group would hold annual parades featuring bagpipes (which actually first became popular in the Scottish and British armies) and drums.
In 1848, several New York Irish Aid societies decided to unite their parades to form one New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade. Today, that parade is the world 's oldest civilian parade and the largest in the United States, with over 150,000 participants.
Each year, nearly three million people line the 1.5-mile parade route to watch the procession, which takes more than five hours. Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and Savannah also celebrate the day with parades involving between 10,000 and 20,000 participants.


  1. How funny that the first St. Patrick's day parade was in the US. Everyone loves to be Irish for a day :) My grandmother was Irish but I've never done much celebrating for the holiday.

  2. Love that picture! I forgot to watch the parade on TV. They always have a great one in NYC. I have distant relatives in Ireland and Wales. Don't know any of them though. My sister did get to meet some about ten years ago when she went there. I love the Irish music.