This past May 23, United States President Barack Obama (along with his wife, First Lady Michelle Obama) touched down in Ireland for a visit.
Obama’s trip to Ireland was part of a four-country tour that included England, Poland, and France…
The Irish people displayed their customary warmth and hospitality to the American politician and his spouse; since Barack Obama has Irish heritage (on his mother’s side), it does seem quite fitting that the American President should enjoy an official visit to his ancestral homeland!
Obama’s Ancestry Has Been Traced Back To Ireland’s County Offaly
Barack Obama met with a distant cousin while visiting Ireland… the President’s Irish lineage can be traced back to a cobbler who hailed from Moneygall, County Offaly.
While tracing his ancestry in Moneygall on Monday, the President enjoyed a delicious pint of Guinness at a local pub.
Barack Obama paid for his own brew, commented that the barley-based ale was “good stuff”, and traded some quips with the local bartender.
While in Moneygall, he was also able to see the town where his great-great-great grandfather, Falmouth Kearney, used to live…
America and Ireland will always share a special bond, as approximately 40 million American are of Irish heritage. This visit marked a symbolic strengthening of the ties between the USA and Ireland…
Security Was High During The Irish Tour
Barack Obama’s foreign visit required an extensive entourage…his Secret Service security staff numbered in the hundreds, and his armor-plated limo (equipped with a James Bond-inspired “explosion-proof” gas tank) and high-tech helicopter were used to safeguard the American head of state during his tour.
A team of six American doctors, surgeons, and nurses also traveled along with the Obamas, carrying everything (including the President’s Type AB blood) they might need to administer health care to Barack Obama away from the White House…
Ireland’s deputy prime minister, Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore, was there to greet the Obamas as they stepped off Air Force One onto the tarmac at Dublin Airport.
After arriving at the airport in Dublin, the President and First lady were helicoptered to Aras an Uachtarain (which is the official residence of the Irish President to meet with Ireland’s President, Mary McAleese.
Another happy moment occurred when the President gave a touching speech at College Green, a square that borders Trinity College, Dublin.
In Obama’s College Green speech, he spoke to a crowd of over 20,000 bystanders, telling of his desire to strengthen the “bonds of affection” between the USA and Ireland…
Obama’s stay in Ireland was cut short due to safety concerns stemming from an Icelandic ash cloud – he chose to curtail the rest of his visit in order to fly out and avoid the perils of the volcanic ash plume.
Though his trip was a short one, it was a positive visit, without any gaffes, security problems, or other mishaps, and the reception Obama received in the Emerald Isle was wildly positive…
Detractors viewed the President’s speeches and meet-and-greet’s as crass, pre-election campaigning…they also felt he was “cashing in” on the fame and glamor of the recent Royal Wedding by scheduling a British Isles visit so soon after Kate and William’s nuptials.
However, those who approved of Obama’s four-country tour were happy to see the President of the United Stated reaching out to the citizens of these overseas nations.
Celebrate Ireland With Traditional Irish Jewelry
The Shamrock is Ireland’s most recognizable symbol…this motif was used by Saint Patrick to convert Pagans to Christ during the Middle Ages.
According to legend, Saint Patrick used the three leaves of this tender plant to symbolize the presence of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit – he believed each leaf represented proof of God in the natural world.
Today, the Shamrock continues to inspire patriotism and love of all things Irish.
If, like Barack Obama, your family tree features an Irish branch or two, you’ll enjoy showing your heritage by wearing this affordable, handcrafted Silver CZ and Green CZ Shamrock Pendant – shining CZ gemstones and gleaming sterling silver add shimmer and style to three romantic, heart-shaped leaves…
For more exciting and authentic Irish jewelry designs, please visit our online Irish jewelry store..