Never before seen footage of JFK’s visit to be donated to New Ross Library

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

A 20-minute long colour video capturing the visit of President John F. Kennedy to New Ross in County Wexford in June 1963 is to be donated to the Kennedy Book and Research Archive at New Ross Library during the 2021 Kennedy Summer School.

The Kennedy Book and Research Archive was launched at New Ross Library by the Kennedy Summer in association with Wexford County Council in 2017 on the 100th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s birth.

The collection contains items of unique interest, including a number of books written by John F. Kennedy before taking up political office, LIFE magazine from the 1960s, and other contemporary publications.

The New Ross Standard from June of 1963, during President Kennedy’s official visit to Ireland and more.

The Kennedy family traces their roots back to Dunganstown in County Wexford when Patrick Kennedy, JFK’s great-grandfather left Ireland during the Great Famine in 1848.

The Kennedy Book and Research Archive is this year delighted to accept the Movie collection of Mrs Peggy Walsh, Hoodsgrove, Rosbercon, New Ross.

Photo: Peggy Walsh

Speaking of the movie, Chair of the Summer School Willie Keilthy said, “Today we are privileged to have so many formats for collecting local historic and social events instantly on our smartphones. Back in the late 1950s and 1960s collecting such footage was limited to the standard film camera or the super 8 movie camera with sometimes waiting weeks to have them developed and then only available to a few.

“Fortunately, Peggy Walsh now 98 years old was a keen photographer and videographer and back in the day made lots of short movies capturing the most important events of the day in New Ross including the visit of President Kennedy to the town, the last days of the New Ross Dublin Train Service, play at New Ross Golf Club and many others.”

The poignant footage will be showcased to the public for the first time at an outdoor screening event hosted by New Ross Library at the New Ross Library Park on September 2nd, 2021 at 5.30 pm.

This event takes place as part of the annual Kennedy Summer School which will be hosted in New Ross in County Wexford from September 2nd to 4th 2021 with some events also available online.

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