History of the Atlanta St. Patrick’s Parade
The Atlanta Constitution, in 1893, told of an eventful St. Patrick’s Day parade with a full-page account of the festivities. The article read as follows: “Three hundred Irishmen from the Hibernian Benevolent Society along with the Ancient Order of Hibernians, and the Catholic Knights of Atlanta, marching to the music of the Fourth Artillery band filed into the Catholic Church for Mass, at which Father Clifford preached on the life and work of St. Patrick. Upon the conclusion of Mass, the societies paraded to the Opera House on Marietta Street to celebrate.”
For the next century, the Parade continued to be a small, but dependable annual Atlanta tradition, skipping only the years during the First and Second World Wars.
Since that time, the parade has grown under the leadership of Atlanta St. Patrick’s Parade, Inc. (“The Parade Committee”). To this day, members of the Hibernian Benevolent Society, the Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH), Clan Na NGael, Fire Emerald Society of Metro Atlanta (FESMA), the Irish Information Center and the Metro Atlanta Police Emerald Society (MAPES) are all actively involved in the Parade as participants, sponsors and often as members of the Parade Committee.