This episode is from the WNYC archives. It may contain language which is no longer politically or socially appropriate.
At City Hall. Eamon De Valera, former president and prime minister of Ireland, receives honorary citizenship to New York City. Thomas Cowan reporting the events. Grover A. Whalen and Vincent Impellitteri, President of the City Council, are present.
Band performs Star Spangled Banner. Frank Ryan of the Police Department sings The Soldier's Song.
Hon. Grover A. Whalen makes an introduction. A Boy from Manhattan island who had made good overseas as well as at home. Our distinguished guest showed great courage in his struggle for freedom for Ireland.
Speaking on behalf of Mayor O'Dwyer is Mr. Impellitteri. Mayor O'Dwyer is just as much a part of this event, heart and soul, as if he were here in our presence. Reads the speech from Mayor O'Dwyer: "Know all men by these presence that I, William O'Dwyer, Mayor of the City of New York, do hereby cite for distinguished and exceptional public service honorable Eamon De Valera, whose pubic benefactions and the advancement of human liberty, and in the example of his enlightened statesmanship for the promotion of peace and happiness among all people have enlisted the heartfelt gratitude and the deep affection of the people of the City of New York." (Applause from the crowd.)
Impellitteri hands the scroll to De Valera and the photographers take pictures of the historic moment.
Whalen introduces Eamon DeValera. De Valera is overwhelmed by the honor and "the welcome that has been given to me because of the people and the cause which I represent..." The Irish people have been able to enact a constitution which was framed by their own freely elected representatives. Today, we have in 26 counties in Ireland a freedom as complete as the freedom of any country in the world. No one will be satisfied until all the counties are as free as the first 26. I am assured that that day will come. Speaks a few lines in Gaelic. Crowd applauds and cheers.
Impellitteri speaks again and confers in name of Mayor O'Dwyer the citizenship of De Valera.
Police Department Glee Club sing some Irish songs. New York Fire Department Band closes.
Audio courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives WNYC Collection
WNYC archives id: 34076
Municipal archives id: LT2438
This is a machine-generated transcript. Text is unformatted and may contain errors.
The ballet is the cheers for a Monday vote out which F.M.'s voted into the council chamber here in City Hall on the animal Rover a whale and. He posed right on the roster now where ordinarily in the third and solitary are honorable president of the council who resides when the Council of the body in Iraq is the best camera men are having a few winning there and to see him to wave his hand the thought of recognition to the ovation here and for the home. Of a musical program we've heard all the Irish and everything that had won the heart of any Irishman is taken place here in New York today and I'm as the wailing is coming up in just a moment we'll hear the familiar voice of this great New Yorker chairman of the mayor's committee for the commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of red on the ark welcoming as he does the president and former prime minister of Iraq and now as soon as Mr Whalen can get quiet he'll make the opening introduction and present his guest but the little invalid that Mr Whalen. The. Frank Ryan of the police department sings A Soldier's Song. You. Know you. Make. Out. That. You. Know. There. Is. No. There. There. Who. You there. Oh oh. Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh oh. Oh. You. Will make the necessary introductions was chairman of the mayor's committees on reception to him and De Valera here at city hall you are Mr Whalen. President. Thing was guess ladies and gentlemen yesterday morning at four fifty five A.M.. A plane dropped in from Iowa and had on it a boy from Manhattan I have a. Bullet made good overseas as well as at home. I was glad very glad the benefit of the Bar president Praful and the matter was planned out best where he was blown. Of course I just ate with. The same sort of courage that he did in his struggle for freedom for Ireland when he announced that he came from one of the five boroughs of the city of New York. He was just as truthful on that occasion as he has been all through his life. And I might say in passing before I turn the rostrum over to the president of the council in power Terry that. In many years I have never see such a demonstration. That was given to our guest of honor today as we came down from the law fast Dorio tell park at get thirty four states East River Drive the fish market the battery and Wall Street all united and paying homage to live distinguished guests. I know there are two areas listening in and it will warm the cockles of his heart I'm sure when he heard the cheers that you gave our guest of honor at the end of this room I don't even recall ever hearing such cheers before in this chamber Mr involuntary that made me present you. This distinguished Son of Man. The former. President and Prime heir of violent M. and devil era Q Thanks. Mr Whalen. Your excellent phase Haman people are frank and you can thank these and Jack. It is indeed my profound place here and privilege on behalf of Mayor William old wire. To extend the office show ratings of our great city. And I most cartoon fashion to our very distinguished guests I miss this think played historic occasion. As we are gathered here in the cherry council chamber of New York City Hall I am acutely aware of the honor which this event brings to me. And I can read in the faces of all LOS who are press that frail which at this moment courses through all of our hot. Only one fact off the tracks from our genuine happen and that is the absence of marrow why. Our home lives day what had been more especially memorable if he were presiding. I know however that he is listening very tentatively at Gracie Mansion for these proceedings and as far as he himself is concerned he is just as much pop pop up this event hot and self as if he were here in our press. Thanks. In reading Mr De Valera and his associate Frank take him. I want to officially conveyed a both of them that the citizens of New York are indeed proud and joyful that they have come to visit with us. I know that I express the feelings of all the offerings when I say that I hope they will stay long you enjoy the genuine hospitality far with this municipality it's already known and that they will return again and again. After all these famous visitors are no strangers here in New York they have been here before up in fact infelicity Mr De Valera New York is fully aware. Yeah that this function has a unique aspect in that our honored guest is actually a native son of Manhattan. I doubt that there was ever before Pa Sambo more expressive of the affectionate relationship up painting between this propolis and our limb then the fact that the people of America then the people of our time. Chose chief executive's form in the territory of the up. And for those listening in with who do not believe in the democratic way government let them try to match that. This moment requires an expression from me however of a deeper care. What memories are evoked by the very mention of the name of a man the Valera. Among the lovers of liberty every way. Is almost miraculous progress. From the the vaster of doubloons revolutionary Easter week of nineteen sixteen and I saw that in person in one nine hundred seventeen. Through countless dramatic the substitute. To the presidency of the Council of the League of Nations in Geneva some twenty years later emphasizes that history sometimes out of it romance. The voice which once called the commands of battle with the barricades was to be the very same voice which was to later of peel from the chair of the greatest political council among the nations of the earth in behalf of peace. If the powers of aggression had weighed the logic and prophecy of that mighty plea what well mankind might have been spared. Why then counts. Serene in the face of see the fun just criticism the term in advance seemed national idea. Foremost and sending material aid to broken hearted people down a starving continent midst of the Valera you have been the first of a thought of gallants virtuality through up period of dark materialism. And the ark through me as president of the city council. In the name of merit white and furs upon you your ex the monthly payment the Valar of this embellished for all. Symbolizing the menace apologies up Biotene appreciation of your tireless struggle to extend the boundaries of human freedom not only for the people of your own nation but for all the liberties say King peoples of the world this citation Mr De Valera. Is an indication of the Berry right and steam in which you are held by the people of the city of New York it reads as follows know all men by these prices that I am owed why as mayor of the city of New York do hereby cite for distinguished an exceptional first public service honorable a man. Whose public benefactor in the advancement of human liberty and in the exam pulled up his enlightened statesmanship for the promotion of peace and happiness among all people heaven list that the heartfelt gratitude and the up action of the people of the city of New York. Thanks. Nah. Muslim public airing in the name of national dryer is shaking hands with him and they will air on the cameramen are insisting that they have a picture of this a sonic event most of America is a curious man because he insisted on opening the scroll and reading it not knowing of course of Mr Impala tell he was going to read it as well and all the cameramen are having a few innings because this is a historic event and that it's a mighty grand thing indeed that we can refer back to these pictures and to the faces on the historic moment and those who participated through the medium of the pictures of these cameramen are always so zealous in the painting Mr De Valera room sofa is quite surprising to look at because his face looks so much bigger in the pictures we see and yet he has a small face but he has a rather long neck and which is accented by a very high collar he's wearing the glasses that he's partly by now Mr Whalen. And then that although. Mr President. Ladies and gentlemen. I need not tell you that's what pleasure I had received to school. The knowledge that I have been made and not only citizens of this wonderful city is so overwhelming. That I find it very high and to find words to express my feelings. I have and every occasion in which I have come to this city received such a warm welcome that I assure you it would have touched a hat which is much colder I hope than mine is. I know that the welcome that has been given me. Has not bein a personal letter although I have been always greeted as a boy from and have. It is a welcome that has been given to me because of the people and a cause which I represent have represented anyhow for quite a number of years. The people of the Irish race who have come to this country. And all testing times prove themselves amongst the most devoted sons of the United States. They have played their share in building up the greatness of this country I have been practically in every state and in every city here and in your state. And in no city have I been in which I have not found. Men and women occupying positions of the highest in part whether it was political. And business in any other activity human activity in the country. People. Respected here in the United States because of their worst and when I come here have come here as a representative of the people of that land the land from which they have sprung it's no wonder that I should have got it when on the other hand the people of the United States whether the people blood or not have played a part in helping us to we know freedom. During the whole of our struggle you will recognize in Ireland in the struggle of the Irish people really a symbol of liberty being a great liberty loving people you naturally anxious to help a small nation that was striving to find itself the freedom which you believe all nations were entitled to some eight or ten years ago it would have been a great pleasure to me. Had it been possible for me to come here and as I could have on that occasion given tanks on behalf of the Irish people to you for the wonderful assistance you gave us in our struggle. At that time that's about ten years ago the Irish people had been able to enact. Twenty six of the thirty two counties of Ireland of concern had been able to INEC a constitution which was framed by their own freely elected representatives and freely elected by themselves when they had done that they had established their freedom that part of the country was concerned and when we had got back all ports as we did at that time from Britain in that area then I could have come here and tank United States people of the United States for the assistance which he had given us and which had been so helpful to bring us to that happy consummation to day as I have already said to members of the place we have. A freedom must complete the freedom of any country in the world and I am I. And I am delighted because nobody knows I think there is no living person who knows as well as I do the part that the French are for United. In that happy victory however we have not got their victory which we set out to achieve no Irishman as I said yesterday for the press and door Irish woman even more than Irish mean no Irishmen or Irish woman would be satisfied until the whole of the island the twenty six county Illinois. And yet. I have that complete freedom I am assessed and as I was when I came here first and we were going to achieve it I am just us us into doing. This we have on the part of our people at home and that's part of all people throughout the world the same determination that we had in the past then I think the game will come when I thought I saw somebody else in a position that will. Take them to speak. People will come here today. And I. Will be completely free I would like to me. That I would like to be that person. But. To be that person or not I am absolutely assured that that day will come and I hope that's. Not. By the person that telling the people of New York. From one part of it to the other I'm going. To. Get a. Chance to do he had a. Good day. Here. In America. And you. I. Remember from our September. Council of the city of New York. To make another introduction the. President of the council to interpret the last remark to my. Sister a pilot's always going to. Be Irish. Irish language. Grover has asked me to interpret the remark I might pull him because I did spend a year in Ireland but another thing is they were prohibited from teaching Gaelic so I can apply. I do have one word narrowed wire was listening in to this program. And he heard the remarks made by Mr the Bolero and I recall a citation that he signed yesterday the citation merely gave recognition to Mr De Valera on behalf of the people of the city of New York for his this thing which is an exceptional public service. That's all the citation did but the mare felt after hearing what Mr De Valera sad and he's asked me to convey the mist of the Valera. The fact that all of a citation did not make him officially a citizen of the city of New York he's asked me now to make that announcement on his behalf. Albums in the peloton I just conferred the citizenship of the name of Merrill Dwyer on the honorable in the midst of the looking for that extra money. But there was a time when I had to fight independently of the fact that he has. Family at the time in which I suppose I would have been to God as an American citizen and a citizen the often the case I am very grateful to have more than great for the man who has already shown. More than usual hospitality to me and that he made plain adding that very much appreciated edition to the school. Will render. Several Irish malady. I I. I. I. I. I. I. Oh. I I. I. I. I. I. I. I. Suffer from. The. You. Say the. The the the. The the. The. The. The. A.F.. The. The. The. The why the. Please please club bar it's. The today. In the fire department band play the processional March but everybody remain seated on July distinguished guests leave this all. Mayor of the city of New York the Honorable William not unfortunately and how we regret being too ill to be present on this historic occasion was represented by the animal given to them voluntary president of the Council of the city of New York we all know him and former president and prime minister of Ireland has been received by the mayor the city of New York and the private circumstances without putting our necessary Spain on his health under the circumstances and there is no question about the loving welcome that New York has tended to Mr De Valera today was at the corner of forty second Street and Lexington Avenue where the Chrysler Building now stands. We realize in this very affectionate welcome that the heart that has truly loved never forget but as to the flow. And the sunflower turns on our God when you said the same love which he gave one. And the minstrel By can restrain his heart because he is no longer a slight. We take leave from the council chamber and study all the terminations of the reception by the committee headed by the whale and the animal. Prime Minister and former president of the ancient violence and nation that has brought the cultures to all the nations of the world until the great wall of steel the sun the from the north and because of our geographical position isolator that culture and to the great loss of the world because previous to that it had penetrated as far as the very opposite so long live island and long lived wonderfully art that knows how to create those who have achieved whether they are from Ireland or anywhere else in the world for the good and benefit of all mankind represented as it is in this quality of goodness and the right. Way to do our study of.