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June 27, 1963


          “A hundred thousand welcomes!”

John F. Kennedy, the 1st Irish-American president, landed by helicopter at the Gaelic Field in New Ross, Ireland today.

He is the 1st American president to visit Ireland during his term of office.

JFK was welcomed by Irish school children waving American flags & singing the President’s favorite Irish tunes.

JFK joined in himself in singing “The Boys of Wexford”.

“We are the boys of Wexford
Who fought with heart & hand
To burst in twain
The galling chain
And free our native land.”

         JFK Greets Irish School Children
                   JFK Library Photo

In his speech at New Ross, JFK said:

“When my great grandfather left here to become a cooper in East Boston, he carried nothing with him except 2 things:  a strong religious faith & a strong desire for liberty.  I am glad to say that all of his great grandchildren have valued that inheritance.” 

The President then made the 6 mile drive to Dunganstown on the banks of the Barrow River. It was the home of his great great grandfather, Patrick Kennedy.

Presidential Party at Dunganstown
        Photo by Cecil Stoughton
            JFK Library Photo

The President was greeted by his hostess & cousin, Mary Ryan, who is 63 years old.

JFK said:  “I’m glad to see you & I’m sorry for all the trouble I caused you.”

Mrs. Ryan, whom JFK visited on his 1st trip to Ireland in 1947, gave him a kiss on the cheek.

    Mrs. Ryan Gives Cousin Jack a Kiss

They then had tea where JFK proposed this toast:

“To all the Kennedys who went & all the Kennedys who stayed.”

Later at Redmond Place in Wexford, JFK asked if there were any Kennedys in the audience & if so, to raise their hands.  A few did.  JFK responded: “I’m glad to see a few cousins who didn’t catch the boat.”

As to be expected, the President was very complimentary of the Irish.  He said:

“In Ireland….you see something of what is so great about the United States…through million of your sons & daughters & cousins–25 million, in fact–you see something of what is great about Ireland.”

This evening the President will attend a garden party at the Irish president’s home in Dublin.*

*Source: “One of Ourselves: JFK in Ireland” by James Robert Carroll (2003)

June 27, 1963


Less than 3 years after having been defeated as Richard Nixon’s Vice-Presidential running mate, Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. has been appointed US ambassador to South Vietnam by President Kennedy.

Lodge, who replaces Frederick E. Nolting, also was defeated by JFK in his bid to be re-elected to the US Senate from Massachusetts in 1952.*

*Lodge will serve as ambassador until June 1964 when he makes a bid for the Republican Presidential nomination. 

Lodge later returns to South Vietnam for a 2 year term as ambassador.

          Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr.
 US Ambassador to South Vietnam

June 27, 1950


Just 2 days after North Korean troops invaded South Korea, President Harry S Truman is ordering US air & naval forces to South Korea.

The President says this action is necessary to enforce the resolution of the United Nations calling for an end to the hostilities.*

*Truman’s decision is met with universal support by both Congress & the American people.

           President Harry S. Truman 
             National Archives Photo

June 27, 1968


12 years after taking the country & world by storm, Elvis Presley is taping a “Comeback Special” for broadcast television.

According to director Steve Binder, Elvis’s career is “in the toilet” after several years of making movies in Hollywood.

Binder wants Elvis to do an informal jam session with members of his band on the TV special.

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