A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from March 12, 2016
“Kiss me, I’m Irish”

"Kiss me, I’m Irish” is a popular sentiment on St. Patrick’s Day. The kissing saying probably reflects the ancient Irish tradition of kissing the Blarney Stone.

“Kiss me, I’m Irish” buttons appeared in 1962 and 1963, especially at New York City’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The kissing expression was soon used by other nationalities, such as in “Kiss Me, I’m Italian” and “Kiss Me, I’m German.” The expression continues to be printed on many products, such as T-shirts, posters and bumper stickers.


Wikipedia: Blarney Stone
The Blarney Stone (Irish: Cloch na Blarnan) is a block of Carboniferous limestone built into the battlements of Blarney Castle, Blarney, about 8 kilometres (5 mi) from Cork, Ireland. According to legend, kissing the stone endows the kisser with the gift of the gab (great eloquence or skill at flattery). The stone was set into a tower of the castle in 1446. The castle is a popular tourist site in Ireland, attracting visitors from all over the world to kiss the stone and tour the castle and its gardens.

1 April 1962, The Observer (UK), pg. 30, col. 8:
And as for pre-printed shirts, saying “Kiss me, I’m Irish” for St. Patrick’s Day or “Tear on the Dotted Line” ... the thing has limitless possibilities.

22 June 1962, The Spectator (UK), “All Sons of Kings” by Ronald Bryden, pg. 823, col. 2:
On March 17, I had stood on Fifth Avenue, barred from crossing Manhattan by a quarter of a million people—policemen, pipers, drum-majorettes—parading up the island in plastic green trilbies, rosettes and badges saying ‘Kiss Me, I’m Irish.’

7 March 1963, Lockhart (TX) Post-Register, “Rockne News” by Mrs. Arthur Goertz, pg. 5, col. 2:
Among her jewelry she wore a large green and white pin saying “Kiss Me I’m Irish,” and black shades with white rims to make her appearance more mystifying.

19 March 1963, Boston (MA) Record American, “200,000 Watch Parade in Southie,” pg. 3, col. 1:
A brand new feature of Southie’s big celebration was the presence of pretty girls along the sidewalks who sported white badges with green letters demanding “Kiss Me!, I’m Irish!”

7 October 1963, New York (NY) Times, “400,000 Turn Out for Parade Honoring Pulaski,” pg. 26, col. 2:
As a brght succession of costumed girls and martial bands swung down 52d Street in the sunlight yesterday afternoon, a sidewalk vender stood patiently in the shadows trying to sell huge green buttons that said, “Kiss me, I’m Irish.”

Business was not brisk.

18 March 1964, Boston (MA) Globe, “2-Party Blarney At Lunch” by James S. Doyle, pg. 1, col. 8:
On the left was Gov. Peabody with a big button on his lapel that said “Kiss Me, I’m Irish.”

Old Fulton NY Post Cards
20 March 1965, The Irish American Advocate (New York, NY), “The Green Blooms Early With 3 St. Pat’s Parades,” pg. 9, col. 3:
Hughes took time out to buss the colleens in the stand. Addonizio, pointing to the hue button on his chest, said, “This doesn’t get me a darned thing.”

It read: “Kiss me, I’m Irish.”

OCLC WorldCat record
Kiss me I’m italian
Author: Gillo Dorfles; et al
Publisher: Paris : Ed. Georges Fall, 1970.
Edition/Format: Print book : English

OCLC WorldCat record
KISS ME, I’M PUERTO RICAN!
Author: Ramon A Monge
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication: Social Work, v17 n4 (19720701): 128
Database: JSTOR Arts & Sciences XII Collection

OCLC WorldCat record
Kiss me, I’m German
Author: Linda Lee Brown; Golden Aires (Musical group)
Publisher: [S.l.] : Golden-Aires, 1979.
Edition/Format: Music LP : English

OCLC WorldCat record
Kiss me, I’m Armenian : a memoir
Author: John D Hagopian
Publisher: Phoenix, Ariz. : Jurobian, ©1982.
Edition/Format: Print book : Biography : English

OCLC WorldCat record
“Kiss me, I’m not Irish, but I wish I was” : the cultural adoption of Irish music in America
Author: Kristen L Nyers; Frank D Gunderson
Publisher: Tallahassee, Florida : Florida State University, 2009.
Dissertation: M.M. Florida State University 2009
Edition/Format: Thesis/dissertation : Document : Thesis/dissertation : eBook Computer File : English
Database: WorldCat
Summary:
Ethnomusicological works often examine music as an expression of identity. In these studies, music is seen as the product of culture and ethnicity. This thesis reverses this approach and instead explores how musical experiences, rather than only reflecting identity, can produce identity. Within the context of the United States of America, a multicultural society, the Irish music tradition is generally understood to belong to the community of the Irish diaspora.

Ancestry
Origin of “Kiss Me, I’m Irish” Saying
Posted by Anna Swayne on March 6, 2015 in AncestryDNA
(...)
Kissing someone who is Irish is pretty much the next best thing to kissing the stone in Blarney Castle, which is likely where this famous saying comes from. According to legend, kissing the stone will give you the power of eloquent and persuasive speech. Two different stories relate kissing the stone with luck.

One dates back to 1440s when the builder of the castle, Cormac Laidir MacCarthy, was in a lawsuit and needed some extra luck. He sought out Clíodhna (goddess of love and beauty) and she told him to kiss a stone on his way to court. He did, and he won his case. Later he took that same stone and installed it into the castle.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • Saturday, March 12, 2016 • Permalink