The Charitable Irish Society
The Oldest Irish Society in the Americas

Register & pay online for upcoming Charitable Irish Society events

    • 03/27/2017
    • 09/22/2017
    • Massachusetts Historical Society, 1135 Boylston Street, Boston

         The Charitable Irish Society’s history features in this exhibit. The exhibit chronology begins with the society’s founding in 1737 and ends with the 175th Anniversary Dinner of the Charitable Irish Society on March 18, 1912 that was attended by 800 people, including President William Howard Taft and Cardinal William O’Connell.

          A central theme of the exhibit is the aid that Bostonians sent to Ireland at the height of the Irish Famine Crisis in 1847.  Charitable Irish Society members were prominent in the fund raising efforts of Bishop Fitzpatrick’s Irish Relief Fund as well as of the New England Relief Committee which sent 800 tons of provisions on the USS Jamestown to Cork under the command of Captain Robert Bennet Forbes.     

         The exhibit also provides insights into the challenges that faced newly arrived Irish immigrants in the post-famine decades, and how these men and women built social, cultural and political institutions that broadened their opportunities and made them an influential segment of Boston’s society by 1912.

         The following programs will be of interest to Charitable Irish Society members.  You may register to attend by calling 617 646-0578 or on-line at

         Monday, March 27th, 5:30/6:00 pm, Reception/Talk:  The Mission of the Jamestown, A panel discussion with William M. Fowler, Northeastern University and Guest Curator, Catherine B. Shannon,  Westfield State University and Guest historian, Christine Kinealy, Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute, Quinnipiac University.

         Tuesday, March 28th, 5:15 pm, Modern American Society and Culture Series Seminar:  Moving News, Affecting Relief: The Irish Famine’s Trans - Atlantic Circulations, a talk by Anelise H. Shrout, California State University, Fullerton and Comment by Kevin Kenny, Boston College.

         Wednesday, April 12th, 5:30/6:00 pm, Reception/Talk, The Rise and Fall of the American Party by Peter Drummey, MHS.  This talk will explore the Know-Nothing movement in Massachusetts.

         Tuesday, April 18th, 2:00 pm, Family Program: Make your Own Comic,

         The Jamestown Relief Mission to Ireland. This is a hands-on history program for children that will tell the stories of Robert Bennet Forbes’ efforts for Irish Famine Relief.

         Thursday, April 20th, 9:00 to 4:00/ Workshop. Open to K-12 educators, Boston to the Rescue: Robert B. Forbes and Irish Famine Relief.  Professional development points and graduate credit available. $25 per person fee. Register at 617-646-0557.

         This exhibit is co-sponsored by the MHS and the Forbes House Museum, and made possible by a generous grant from the Sullivan Family Foundation.

Past events

06/02/2017 Memorial Day Remembrance, June 2, 2017
05/13/2017 Famine, Friends & Fenians
04/12/2017 Kevin Barry: A Writer's Apprenticeship
03/17/2017 Charitable Irish Society's 280th St. Patrick's Day Anniversary Dinner
02/10/2017 The Beauty Queen of Leenane by Martin McDonagh
11/18/2016 A Celebration of Irish Revolutionary Women and the Irish Language
11/09/2016 Fall 2016 Burns Visiting Scholar in Irish Studies lecture, presented by literary critic and poet Louis de Paor
10/18/2016 Burns Library Event Announcement - Poems of Repossession, October 18, 2016
10/17/2016 A Celebration of Irish Revolutionary Women and the Irish Language
09/30/2016 Plough and the Stars
09/26/2016 Boston College Irish Studies film screening, Sept. 26 - 1916: The Irish Rebellion
09/09/2016 Exhibition - "The Forgotten Heroines of the Easter Rising"
05/27/2016 Memorial Day Rememberance
04/06/2016 British Society - Tartan Day Celebration
03/17/2016 St. Patrick`s Day 279th Anniversary Dinner
03/02/2016 Spring 2016 Burns Scholar Lecture at Burns Library, Boston College
02/02/2016 Tuesday, Feb. 2: Dr. Raghnall O'Floinn on the National Museum of Ireland
12/13/2015 Celtic Sojourn After Party
12/13/2015 Christmas Celtic Sojourn with Brian O'Donovan
11/24/2015 Welcome Reception for the Irish Consul General, Fionnuala Quinlan and Vice Consul Meg Laffan
10/30/2015 Lecture on the Irish National Famine Museum by Caroilin Callery
10/24/2015 Celebrating W.B. Yeats at Boston College
10/14/2015 2015 Silver Key Awards Reception
08/18/2015 Charles River Sunset Cruise - farewell to Consul General of Ireland Breandán Ó Caollaí
06/27/2015 Martha's Vineyard - cocktails with the Consul General of Ireland Breandán Ó Caollaí
06/02/2015 An evening with the Consuls General
05/28/2015 Irish Night at Pops
05/22/2015 Memorial Day Remembrance
04/23/2015 "Journey Toward Hope" - A Night of Appreciation
03/21/2015 The Arts and Crafts Movement - Making it Irish
03/17/2015 St. Patrick`s Day Anniversary Dinner
03/17/2015 The Charitable Irish Society 278th Annual Meeting
01/26/2015 One Story Draws Another: Staff selections from the Irish collections at the Burns Library
12/09/2014 Gaelic Roots Christmas Concert Presented by Boston College
11/19/2014 Academy Award Nominee Documentary, Which Way Home
10/15/2014 2014 Silver Key Awards Reception
09/13/2014 Kilted pub crawl to support the Scots' Charitable Society and the Charitable Irish Society
05/23/2014 Annual Memorial Day Remembrance
03/17/2014 St. Patrick's Day Anniversary Dinner
05/24/2013 2013 Memorial Day Observance
05/24/2013 Memorial Lunch - Union Club
05/08/2013 Board of Directors Meeting
05/05/2013 "The Irish Servant Girl"
04/10/2013 Board of Directors Meeting
03/17/2013 St. Patrick's Day Anniversary Dinner
03/16/2013 Annual Meeting of the Society - Boston
01/23/2013 President's Reception
11/29/2012 2012 Silver Key Awards Reception

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