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Plaque to honour Irish diaspora added to Washington Monument

Memorial stones are accepted only in very rare circumstances.

A PLAQUE COMMEMORATING the Irish has been added to the Washington Monument at a ceremony today.

The plaque is to commemorate “the long and enduring relationship between Ireland and the United States”, according to the US National Park Service.

The donation to the National Park Service was delivered by Fianna Fáil Senator Mark Daly.

The plaque will be located among the 193 commemorative stones on the monument’s interior walls.

The Washington Monument contains commemorative and memorial stones received from all 50 states; scores of fraternal and community organisations, cities and towns across America; and 16 foreign countries.

The majority of stones were received between 1849 and 1855.

Memorial stones are accepted only in very rare circumstances: the most recent donation before the Irish addition was in 1982 from the state of Alaska.

U.S.-WASHINGTON D.C.-SUNRISE Source: SIPA USA/PA Images

The offer of a plaque from Ireland was accepted after ensuring it met proper criteria for inclusion in the Washington Monument, and review and approval by the director of the National Park Service.

“For more than 160 years, American states, organisations and even foreign governments have honoured the ideals of General George Washington with commemorative gifts to the Washington Monument,” said Gay Vietzke, superintendent of National Mall and Memorial Parks.

“We are honoured by this gift from the people of Ireland that continues this tradition and celebrates the shared heritage of our two nations.”

Read: Online voting could be introduced as part of Irish diaspora vote

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