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Eire Society of Boston records

Collection MS-2010-012: Eire Society of Boston records


  • Creation: 1817 - 1997
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1937 - 1990

Scope and Contents

These records document the activities of the Eire Society of Boston through their correspondence, event ephemera, financial records, minutes, and publications. Events are further illustrated by photographs and scrapbooks. The core of the Society's functions is captured through its administrative files, which include personal and official correspondence of members, communications to members, constitutions, officer and member lists, biographical sketches of Gold Medal winners, arrangements for Annual Dinners, Night at "Pops" programs, Irish travel and tourism brochures, publicity for Society events, and news clippings on Ireland, Irish politicians, and the Eire Society.


Language of Materials

In English.

Restrictions on access

Collection is open for research.

Restrictions on use

These materials are made available for use in research, teaching and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright Law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source. The original authors may retain copyright to the materials.

Historical Note

The Eire Society of Boston was founded in 1937 by a group of over eighty people that had attended a sixteen-lecture Irish history course organized by the Massachusetts Department of Education. The Society's stated goals were to "promote the knowledge of Irish culture through the encouragement of study in the arts, sciences, literautre, language, and history of Irleand" as well as highlighting Irish contributions to civilization via Society lectures, theatrical and musical productions, and publications. The Society sought to distinguish itself from existing Boston-area Irish cultural organizations such as the Charitable Irish Society by making its focus scholarly rather than charitable and social. The Society was open to both men and women, had no religiouos affiliation, and barred participation by anyone "holding or seeking" public office.

Long-running Eire Society programs and publications included a four-page newsletter, the Bulletin; a monthly winter lecture series from October-April; and an annual dinner, Gold Medal award for exemplification of Society ideals, and night at the Boston Pops. In addition to annual programming, the Society organized participation in local Irish cultural events and trips to Ireland; used Society funds to support Boston-area museum and library acquisitions of significant Irish artworks and special collections; and invited Irish artists to perform in the United States. Despite its early distinction as a cultural rather than charitable organization, the Society has also supported initiatives in Ireland including the arts, ecumenical groups, education, hospitals, and peace-seeking.


"About Us." Eire Society of Boston Website, accessed 12/7/2020:

Ryan, George E. "Looking Inward: The Eire Society of Boston." Bulletin 18, No. 4 (January 1980):1-3.


25.75 Linear Feet (49 containers)


Composed of official records of the Eire Society of Boston, including meeting minutes, correspondence, programs, publications, and financial records. In addition there are clippings, scrapbooks, and some photographs which relate to the society and its activities. While most of the material dates from the period after 1937, there are some collected artifacts and ephemera from the nineteenth century pertaining to Irish and Irish-American political figures.


Organized in eight series: I. Administrative files, II. Eire Society publications, III. Meeting minutes, IV. Financial records, V. Photographs, VI. Scrapbooks, VII. Artifacts, and VIII. Collected materials.


Because the current accessioning system was not used until January 1986, it is not possible to know exactly the dates of acquisition of materials received before that time. The initial gift of materials seems to have been in 1981, with subsequent donations from the Eire Society of Boston (1990-2014).

Eire Society of Boston Records
1817-1997 (bulk 1937-1990)
Andrea Goldstein in 1995; updated by Lynn Moulton
Description rules
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the John J. Burns Library Repository

John J. Burns Library
Boston College
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill MA 02467 United States