Ireland: A Country to Behold Then and Now

If you’re looking forward to some fall travel, now may be the perfect time before the real harsh weather of the winter sets in. Prices are relatively good for hotels and airlines now, as it’s not the high season of the summer or Christmas break.

One great travel spot before the winter really sets in is Ireland. With beautiful scenery, friendly people and romantic accommodations, it’s the perfect spot for anyone, even the President of the United States. As we approach the 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination, it’s interesting to look at the president’s experience in this beautiful location.

When he visited in the summer of 1963, he made history for many reasons. He was the first Irish-American President, the first Catholic President and the first sitting President to visit Ireland. He visited relatives in New Ross, toured the ancestral homestead and more. As JKF proclaimed during his trip, “They love me in Ireland!”  Upon his return home, he penned a letter to Dot Tubridy. Housed with the Shapell Manuscript Foundation, the letter said,

jfk ireland
Letter by JFK with the Shapell Manuscript Foundation

Now that I have returned to the United States and I look back on my visit to Ireland I find that I have nothing but pleasant memories. My visit there was nothing but pleasant memories. My visit there was definitely the highlight of my trip…Dot: It couldn’t have been better. We loved it – All of your countrymen were wonderful to us and so were you.

Certainly, if a President of the United States enjoyed his stay this much, the rest of us would undoubtedly have a lovely visit there as well.



Rachel Forsythe has a B.A. in English Literature and worked as an editor for a local weekly news magazine. She is now a stay-at-home mom, raising three younger boys and two older daughters. Her favorite activities are hiking, reading, traveling, bike riding, skiing in the winter and surfing in the summer. She also loves to cook. Be in touch with Rachel at Rachel[at]

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