"Originally a religious holiday to honor St. Patrick, who introduced Christianity to Ireland in the fifth century, St. Patrick's Day has evolved into a celebration for all things Irish. The world's first St. Patrick's Day parade occurred on March 17, 1762, in New York City, featuring Irish soldiers serving in the English military. This parade became an annual event, with President Truman attending in 1948. Congress proclaimed March as Irish-American Heritage Month in 1995, and the President issues a proclamation commemorating the occasion each year." (1)A few of the highlighted statistics available:
Number of U.S. residents who claimed Irish ancestry in 2010. This number was more than seven times the population of Ireland itself (4.58 million). Irish was the nation's second most frequently reported ancestry, trailing only German. Sources: 2010 American Community Survey.
Number of Irish-born naturalized U.S. residents in 2010. Source: 2010 American Community Survey.
Number of places in the United States named Shamrock, the floral emblem of Ireland. Mount Gay-Shamrock, W.Va., and Shamrock, Texas, were the most populous, with 1,779 and 1,910 residents, respectively. Shamrock Lakes, Ind., had 231 residents and Shamrock, Okla., 101, and three Shamrock Townships in Minnesota, Nebraska and Missouri had populations of 1,272, 413 and 40, respectively. Source: 2010 Demographic Profile.
Number of places in the United States that share the name of Ireland's capital, Dublin. The most populous of these places is Dublin, Calif., with a population of 46,036. Source: 2010 Demographic Profile.
26.4 billion and 2.3 billion
U.S. beef and cabbage production, respectively, in pounds, in 2010. Corned beef and cabbage is a traditional St. Patrick's Day dish. Sources: USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service.
Value of potted florist chrysanthemum sales at wholesale in 2010 for operations with $100,000 or more sales. Lime green chrysanthemums are often requested for St. Patrick's Day celebrations. Source: USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service.