Saint Patrick’s Day is upon us. It seems that around this time of year everyone is claiming that some ancestor at some point was Irish and therefore this is their holiday! But what is the history behind this day? Why all of the green? What do shamrocks have to do with anything? We are glad you asked!
Saint Patrick is considered the patron saint of Ireland because he brought Christianity to Ireland. But not initially. Pirates captured him and forced him to work as a shepherd for years. But in that time learned the language and the culture. He eventually escaped and eventually returned to be a missionary there. The popularity of the shamrock came because he used it as a teaching tool to describe the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). It is believed he died on March 17th in 461. The day was initially celebrated in Ireland by people taking a break from Lent and getting to eat and drink whatever they would like that day. Today we often see people celebrating with corned beef. The holiday was a dry holiday for years as pubs were usually closed on that day. However, drinking was popularized in the 20th century with some key advertising campaigns and now it is synonymous with the St. Patrick’s Day.
The holiday was celebrated in America in as early at 1737 with a parade in Boston. However it wasn’t until the Great Potato Famine of Ireland that brought so many Irish people to American that this holiday found great popularity. The Irish people were initially despised when they came over and had a hard time finding jobs. However, when they realized that because of their numbers they carried a lot of voting power, politicians wanted to be part of celebrating their culture.
Today we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with good friends, good food, and good drinks. If you need to stock up for your St. Patrick’s Day party, don’t forget to drop by and pay us a visit to Redlands Ranch Market.