Welcome to the website of The Father Abram J. Ryan Division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the oldest Irish Catholic organization in America. If you’re visiting our site you are probably aware that our division brings the city of Louisville Kentucky one of the finest St. Patrick’s Parades in the country. We’re also known around the community in Louisville as the presenters of “The Shillelagh” the award given to the winner of the St. Xavier and Trinity High Schools rivalry football game. A tradition that is over fifty years old. When most people in town think of us this is what we are most known for.
There is quite a bit more that we are involved with around the community. The Father Abram J. Ryan Division is involved with many local charities right here in Louisville, as you can read about as you browse our website. You can also read in the website about our efforts to bring recognition to the other fine catholic schools in Louisville. In 2013, the brand new Hibernian Cup was awarded for the first time to the winner of the DeSales and Holy Cross High School rivalry football game and what we hope will be the beginning of a yearly tradition that is long overdue.
The division is active with issues that are important nationally to the National Ancient Order of Hibernians that represent all the divisions across the nation. Our division has raised money for the building of a Commodore Berry memorial that has been built at the Navel Academy in Annapolis. Commodore Berry wasn’t only Irish, he was the first navel officer in the United States commissioned by George Washington himself. The A.O.H. here in Louisville is supportive of the Campaign for a United Ireland and is making efforts to add Kentucky to the list of States that have adopted resolutions to show the states support of the unification of Ireland. States like New York, California, Massachusetts. Rhode Island and Pennsylvania just to name a few. The division is also in the process of petitioning the state government to establish the month of March as Irish American Heritage month state wide.
The A.J.R. Division has taken on thirty new members in just the last two years and is still growing. If you are Irish and have an interest in exploring your heritage download and fill out one of our membership applications and sent it in to us, we’re always glad to bring new members in.
It has been quite a while since Louisville has had a division of Lady Hibernians. The A.J.R. Division is proud to announce there is a new ladies division that has recently formed. You can visit their website at www.laohlouisville.com.
I hope you enjoy checking out our website and if you have the time please drop us a line or two right here on the website, we’re always glad to here from our loyal supporters.
Mark J. Wakefield
Father Abram J. Ryan Division #1 President