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There’s a reason green is lucky for the Irish

Hospitality and Tourism
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It’s that time of year when it seems like everything is turning green. Yes, spring is on the way, but St. Patrick’s Day is also just around the corner. The first St. Patrick’s Day parade occurred on March 17, 1762, in New York City, featuring Irish soldiers serving in the English military. The parade, and St. Patrick’s Day celebrations across the country, have since become an annual occurrence. In 1991, Congress proclaimed March as Irish-American Heritage Month.

So grab a Guinness, put on a green T-shirt and prepare to spend a little green to celebrate, because even if you don’t have any Irish heritage, you can pretend for at least one day a year.

32.6 million

The number of U.S. residents who claimed Irish ancestry in 2017.

20,590

Estimated number of U.S. residents who speak Irish Gaelic.

It’s no surprise that the five states with the highest percent of Irish population are in New England — the Boston NBA team has a clover in their logo, after all.

State

Population with Irish heritage

Total population

Percent of total population

New Hampshire

276,506

1,331,848

21%

Massachusetts

1,390,013

6,789,319

20%

Rhode Island

187,403

1,056,138

18%

Maine

219,611

1,330,158

17%

Vermont

98,349

624,636

16%

 

21%

New Hampshire is the state with highest percent of Irish population.

2,323,593

California has largest Irish population of Irish.

The Census Bureau does not have records of any people of Irish heritage living in Hawaii or North Dakota in 2017.

Irish in the Southeast

State

Population with Irish heritage

Percent of total population

Florida

1,723,519

8.2%

North Carolina

845,007

8.2%

Virginia

756,901

8.9%

Georgia

736,848

7.1%

Tennessee

611,925

9.1%

Kentucky

501,924

11.3%

South Carolina

446,893

8.9%

Alabama

380,766

7.8%

Louisiana

309,946

6.6%

Arkansas

279,122

9.3%

West Virginia

233,578

12.9%

Mississippi

199,449

6.7%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

 

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