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JFK Arrives in Dublin

June 26, 1963 - President Kennedy arrived in Dublin this evening and said it was “like coming home.” That was the way the Irish felt about it too, according to the reception which greeted Mr. Kennedy. He was hailed by President Eamon de Valera as the “first citizen” of the United States but also by the people of Dublin as the local boy — three generations removed — who made good. All of Dublin seemed to be at the airport or lining the road of the 12-mile route to the U.S. Embassy in Phoenix Park. Of the many banners that greeted Mr. Kennedy, one projected a political note. It said: “Undivided Ireland welcomes you — no partition for the Congo, why Ireland?” But for today at least, most people seemed willing to forget that the six Northern counties still are under British rule. The visit was the first of an American President to Ireland while in office, and that was enough for the Dubliners, especially since it was a President with the name of Kennedy.

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