COMMODORE DEKAY CEREMONY – JUNE 17TH

At 6:30 pm on Tuesday evening June 17th the Division will hold a brief ceremony at Commodore George Coleman DeKay’s grave site in St. George’s Cemetery at 319 Front Street in Hempstead. This event will honor his extraordinary efforts to deliver aid to the Irish devastated by the famine.

Attendees are encouraged to bring any clean used clothing and canned goods for donation to St. George’s Church whose rector is graciously hosting this event.

Members should wear business attire (with sashes, medallions and berets for those who have them.)

George Coleman DeKay (1802-1849), an American citizen of Dutch/Irish descent and also a Commodore in the Argentine Navy, lobbied Congress to contribute a ship and spent large amounts of his own money to provision it to transport aid for Ireland during the 1847 famine.

Congress, as a result of his efforts, authorized the temporary removal of armaments and the transfer of the frigate Macedonian to civilian control under his command.

Commodore DeKay sailed from New York for Ireland on June 15, 1847 with 12,000 barrels (approximately 1.700 tons) of provisions, donated by private citizens of the United States, and arrived in Cork on July 16th.