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Guide to the Archives of Irish American United Irish Counties Association Collection AIA.056

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
10th Floor
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2630

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by Rebecca Altermatt

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on September 07, 2018
Description is in English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

 Updated by Megan O’Shea to reflect the incorporation of items separated for use in the exhibit The Fifth Province: County Societies in Irish America at Glucksman Ireland House in 2011 Updated by Megan O'Shea to reflect the incorporation of material from accession number 2018.103  , February 2018 , September 2018

Descriptive Summary

Source: Kearns, Martin
Creator: Archives of Irish America
Title: Archives of Irish America United Irish Counties Association Collection
Dates [inclusive]: 1931-2018
Abstract: The United Irish Counties Association organized in 1904 as an attempt to reunite again all Irish under one umbrella organization. The UICA aims to promote and preserve Irish heritage and culture. Its Annual Feis brings together Irish talent for a celebration of music, dance, and song. The collection consists of annual Feis programs, newspaper clippings, papers from Irish Institute, and photographs of United Irish County Societies activities.
Quantity: 4 Linear Feet in 3 record cartons, 1 half manuscript box, 1 manuscript box, and 1 custom-size artifact box
Location: Materials stored offsite and advance notice is required for use. Please request materials at least two business days prior to research visit.
Language: Materials are in English.
Call Phrase: AIA.056

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Historical/Biographical Note

Irish county organizations were first organized in New York City in the late 1840s. The early societies were for the most part purely social organizations, but in the 1870s some of them started to offer benefits for sickness and death. As the Irish settled into different areas of the city, individual county societies became more prevalent. With the growth of Irish sports, these county societies were even more important. The United Irish Counties Association organized in 1904 as the Irish Counties Athletic Union, as an organization to coordinate and provide venues for sporting events and dances. The goal was to reunite the individual Irish Societies under one umbrella organization, to establish a "central unit of administration to guide and coordinate the activities of the Irish County Organizations," according to the history written by James Comerford, former President of the UICA. (See Box 3, Folder 18.) In 1907, the name was changed to United Irish Counties Association (UICA) with the aim of providing more Irish activities in addition to sports and dances. The purpose of the UICA as articulated in its incorporation papers is to "aid and encourage the members of the Irish race in this State (New York) in taking advantage of all the educational and business opportunities; to furnish information and advice to them on all matters relating to high schools, night schools, trade schools, civil service and commercial opportunities." The organization also promotes activities to preserve and promote the traditional culture if the Irish. This is realized in the Feis, an annual celebration of Irish music, dance, song and athletics.

For more information, visit: http://www.uicany.org/United_Irish_Counties/History.html

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Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of souvenir journals from the annual dinners and dances of the Association. Also included are programs and documentation on the Feis, a festival celebrating Irish culture and music. A scrapbook kept by Rosalie Fitzpatrick on the Feis is also included in the collection. The unbound scrapbook contains originals and photocopies of many of the Feis programs as well as newspaper clippings and articles. One of the articles is written by Ms. Fitzpatrick herself in response to an article written by a Ms. Miller on the meaning and tradition of the Feis. Also of interest is a history of the UICA written by James Comerford, one-time President of the Association. A copy of the article is contained in Ms. Fitzpatrick's scrapbook (Box 3, Folder 18).


Files are organized alphabetically. The Annual event seems to have changed names between "ball" and "dance" over the years; these files are organized chronologically.

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Access Points

Subject Names

  • Kearns, Martin

Document Type

  • Souvenir programs.

Subject Organizations

  • United Irish Counties Association of N.Y.

Subject Topics

  • Irish Americans -- New York (State) -- New York -- Social life and customs.
  • Folk festivals

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Administrative Information

Custodial History

In 1998, Martin Kearns donated materials collected by Peter Nesdale, which had been sent to him by Mel Keighran. This gift included records from the 1940s-1950s and commemorative buttons. Rita and Jim Fitzpatrick sent a gift of annual feis programs, newspaper clippings, papers from Irish Institute, and photographs of United Irish County Societies activities. Accession number associated with the Fitzpatrick gift is 2012.030.

A photograph of the 1944 installation of officers was donated by Brian McGinn in 2011.

Access Restrictions

Open for research without restrictions.

Use Restrictions

The Tamiment Library does not have information about who owns copyright to this collection. Materials in this collection are expected to enter the public domain in 2127. The Tamiment Library is not authorized to grant permission to publish or reproduce materials from this collection.

Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date; United Irish Counties Association Records; AIA 056; box number; folder number;
Archives of Irish America, Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012, New York University Libraries.

Related Material at the Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Archives of Irish American County Society Records (AIA 003) Emerald Society Records (AIA 057) James J. Comerford Papers (AIA 010)

Missing Title

  1. Archives of Irish America County Society Records (AIA 003)
  2. James J. Comerford Papers (AIA 010)
  3. Emerald Society Records (AIA 057)

Immediate Source of Acquisition

An additional acceretion was donated by Martin Kearns, June 2018. The accession number associated with this gift is 2018.103.

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Container List

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: AIAXOS001 Folder : 1 American Irish Historical Society, Annual Banquet (41st) [Photograph]
Feb 19, 1938
Box: 1 Folder : 1 Annual Ball: Committee
Box: 1 Folder : 2 Annual Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 3 Annual Ball Journal
Box: Shared Tamiment 030 Folder : 11-12 Annual Banquet journals
Box: 3 Folder : 20 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 4 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 5 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 8 Annual Grand Ball Journal: Diamond Jubilee
Box: 1 Folder : 9 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 11 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 12 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 3 Folder : 21 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 3 Folder : 22 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 3 Folder : 23 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 3 Folder : 24 Annual Grand Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 13 Annual Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 14 Annual Ball Journal
Box: 1 Folder : 15 Annual Ball Journal
1991, 1993
Box: Shared Tamiment 031 Folder : 5 Annual Ball photograph
Box: 2 Folder : 1 Annual Dinner Dance Journal
Box: 2 Folder : 2 Annual Dinner Dance Journal
Box: 2 Folder : 3 Annual Dinner Dance Journal
Box: 2 Folder : 4 Annual Dinner Dance Journal
Box: 2 Folder : 5 Annual Dinner Dance Journal
Box: 2 Folder : 6 Annual Dinner Dance Journal
Box: 2 Folder : 7 Annual Dinner Dance Journal
Box: 2 Folder : 8 Annual Banquet
Box: 2 Folder : 9 Annual Banquet
Box: 2 Folder : 10 Annual Feis: Circulars
Box: 2 Folder : 11 Annual Feis: Committee
Box: 2 Folder : 12 Annual Feis: Delegates Meeting
Box: 2 Folder : 13 Annual Feis: Documentation
Box: 2 Folder : 14 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 2 Folder : 15 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 2 Folder : 16 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 2 Folder : 17 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 3 Folder : 1 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 3 Folder : 2 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 3 Folder : 3 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 3 Folder : 4 Annual Feis: Program
Box: 3 Folder : 5 Annual Feis: Syllabus
1964, 1981-1989, 1997-2001
Box: 3 Folder : 6 Auditors Report
Box: AIAXOS001 Folder : 1 Certificate of Incorporation
Box: 3 Folder : 25 Community Action Bureau
Box: 3 Folder : 7 Community Action Bureau publication: The Needs of the American-Irish Community in the City of New York
Box: 3 Folder : 8 Constitution
1942, 1952
Box: 3 Folder : 9 Constitution
Box: 3 Folder : 10 Correspondence
Box: 3 Folder : 11 Delegates Meetings, Newsletter
Box: 4 Ephemera: Commemorative Ribbons
Box: 3 Folder : 26 Glee Club
Box: 3 Folder : 12 Grand Festival: Yonkers Raceway
Jun 16, 1990
Box: AIAXOS001 Folder : 1 (Mixed Materials) Installation of Officers
1944, 1975-2007, undated
Box: 3 Folder : 13 (Mixed Materials [31142054616829])
Box: 6 Folder : 1 (Mixed Materials [31142063254414])
Box: AIAXOS001 Folder : 1 Irish Ball [Photograph]
Nov 4, 1932
Box: Shared Tamiment 030 Folder : 13 Irish Directory
Box: 3 Folder : 14 Irish Year Book
Box: 3 Folder : 15 Monthly Meeting Notices
1982-1989, 2003
Box: 3 Folder : 16 New York Irish Feis Day: New York World's Fair
Aug 1, 1964
Box: 3 Folder : 17 Rita Fitzpatrick UICA Feis Scrapbook: Annual Celebrations
Box: 3 Folder : 18 Rita Fitzpatrick UICA Feis Scrapbook: Articles and Personal Notes
1979, 1996, undated
Box: 3 Folder : 19 Rita Fitzpatrick UICA Feis Scrapbook: Photographs and Newsclippings (photocopies)
1938-1959, undated
Box: 6 Folder : 2 Rita McLoughlin Fitzpatrick UICA Feis singing award medals
Box: 3 Folder : 27 United Irish Counties for the U.S.O.

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