Monday, March 10, 2008

St. Patrick's Day Vintage Postcards Part 1

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Monday March 17th will bring the celebration of St. Patrick's day continuing a tradition that began in America in Boston in 1737. St. Patrick was born around 385 AD and his original name was Maewyn and he was sold into slavery at the age of 16, escaped six years later, studied the ministry for 12 years under Saint Germain in Gaul and then returned to Ireland. He traveled throughout the country for 30 years establishing schools, monasteries and churches while converting pagans to Christianity and died March 17 461.

The day was originally a Catholic holy day but spread beyond that to the broader holiday we celebrate today. The large number of Irish immigrants coming to America in the 19th and 20th century brought their traditions and celebrations with them with St. Patrick's day being celebrated here before the Revolutionary War. The first post card is an early 1900s example with Cufton Castle surrounded in a brilliant green border with shamrocks.

The second postcard was published in 1907 by The Ullman Manufacturing Co. in the Emerald Isle Series 115 and shows a boy, decked out in many of the traditional emblems of St. Patrick's day, riding a billy goat. Our next discussion will cover some of the symbols used on post cards to honor this very Irish holiday. Be sure to check the St. Patrick's Day listings on my webpage at Moody's Vintage Postcards.

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