Archiver > IRISH-IN-CHICAGO > 2007-10 > 1193370291

From: Nan Brennan <>
Subject: Re: [IRISH-IN-CHICAGO] Gathering at the Irish American HeritageCenter
Date: Thu, 25 Oct 2007 22:44:51 -0500
References: <>
In-Reply-To: <>


Thank you for taking the time to write up our day at IAHÇ, and so
nicely done, too.


Did you send Brian a copy?

On Oct 21, 2007, at 9:57 PM, wrote:

> About 15 members of the “Irish-in-Chicago” listserv gathered at the
> Irish
> American Heritage Society on Knox Avenue in Chicago today. Brian
> Donovan, the
> resident volunteer genealogist, treated us to an in-depth tour of
> the Center.
> Highlights of the day included:
> * Frank Crowley, the Art Gallery curator, gave us a tour of the
> exhibit: “Samhain/Day of the Dead: Intersection: Exhibits,
> Performance and
> Installations.” The exhibit examines the ancient Celtic festival of
> Samhain and Mexican
> Day of the Dead festivals. Both festivals celebrate the themes of
> birth, death
> and resurrection, the cycle of life and how it is recognized in
> Celtic and
> Mexican cultures. The ancient festival of Samhain is the beginning
> of winter and
> the yearly opening of the Celtic underworld. Puppets play a large
> part in the
> exhibit and they demonstrate the prominence of darkness of the Celtic
> traditions and contrast Day of the Dead traditions. It was quite a
> unique exhibit.
> · We visited the Museum and Brian Donovan described many of the
> acquisitions including a magnificent collection of Belleek Parian
> China; a tapestry
> by Lily Yeats, sister of W.B. Yeats; a historic chair commissioned
> by The
> Irish Fellowship Club of Chicago on the occasion of the visit of
> U.S. President
> William Howard Taft on St. Patrick's Day, 1910; a square grand
> piano dating from
> the late nineteenth century; an exquisite collection of Irish Lace;
> the first
> organ from St. Patrick's Church in St. Charles, Illinois; a series of
> historic maps showing the Irish contribution to European culture
> from the sixth to
> the twelfth centuries, and a copy of The Book of Kells.
> · We toured the beautifully decorated library (opened in
> 2006) which
> houses books that deal with every aspect of Irish and Irish
> American life.
> Other media include Irish and Irish American periodicals and
> newspapers, CDs,
> DVDs, videos, cassettes, and phonographic albums. One of the
> physical highlights
> of the library is the literary border, designed and hand painted by
> artist
> Edward Cox. The library is open to the public.
> * We then had lunch in the Center’s kitchen where a small
> buffet was
> provided by Maureen and others from Maureen’s favorite store:
> Costco! Great
> turkey wraps, delicious Caesar salads, apples and cookies were
> enjoyed by all.
> While we ate, we shared some genealogy finds, talked about some new
> resources
> and in general had a grand day.
> The next gathering of the Irish-In-Chicago group is tentatively
> planned for
> Sunday, January 13, 2008 with a backup date of Sunday, January 20.
> Suggestions
> for a possible venue include The Chicago History Museum, Gaelic
> Park, and
> Harold Washington Library among others.
> Maureen, thanks so much for organizing today, it was great to see
> what the
> Irish American Heritage Center has to offer. We hope everyone on
> the list who
> lives near Chicago can plan to join us at our next gathering.
> Elaine Beaudoin
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