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Irish Social Center

Irish Social Center Chicago Button Museum
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Irish Social Center button museum Chicago Button Museum
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Irish Social Center Chicago, Ill.
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There are five separate illustrations: A green four-leaf clover at the center, a shield embalm on the top left that shows a eagle wing on one side and a arm/hand holding a knife on the other, a shield emblem on the top right with a cross and hand, a shield emblem on the bottom left with three crowns,  and a shield emblem on the bottom right with a harp.  The background is made of red, white, and blue horizontal stripes.

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This button was made for an Irish social center located in Chicago, Illinois. The Irish have a strong history in the city. By 1860, it had the fourth largest Irish population in the United States and the Irish had become entrenched in the city’s politics, religion, and workforce. Parishes and local pubs were often popular social centers for the Irish community.

The four coat of arms depicted in this button represent the four provinces of Ireland. Historically these provinces were loosely bordered kingdoms ruled over by separate monarchies. Today, all thirty two counties of Ireland can be found within the boundaries of these four cultural regions. The part eagle/part hand with sword represents Connacht in the west, with Galway as its main city. Ulster in the north, where the city of Belfast sits, is represented by a cross with a hand. The three crowns represent Munster in the south, with Cork as the main city. Finally, Leinster in the east is represented by the golden harp, where lies the capital city of Dublin.

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