St. Patrick's Society of Montreal

Identity area

Type of entity

Corporate body

Authorized form of name

St. Patrick's Society of Montreal

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Other form(s) of name

  • St. Patrick's Society
  • Saint Patrick's Society

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Description area

Dates of existence

March 17, 1834-


St. Patrick's Society of Montreal was founded on March 17, 1834 to care for Irish immigrants and to defend the local Irish-Canadian community's interests. The first president was John Donnellan. The creation of the Society in Montreal was followed by the Société Saint-Jean-Baptiste (June 1834), the St. Andrew’s Society (February 1835), the St. George’s Society (April 1835) and the German Society (April 1835). The St.Patrick’s Society was non-sectarian until 1856 when a new constitution was adopted and it became wholly Catholic while the Protestant members formed the Irish Protestant Benevolent Society. The Society was incorporated in 1863. The constitution was changed in 1973 to accept women as members of the Society. The St. Patrick's Society is a charitable, social, and educational organization. It has the following specific aims: to promote and foster Irish tradition; to aid whenever possible persons of Irish birth or origin, and particularly, Irish immigrants; and to speak, when necessary, on behalf of the Irish Canadian community.

The Society was based at different locations until 1867 when it moved to the newly completed St. Patrick's Hall on Square Victoria. In September of 1872 a fire destroyed the Hall. The Society is now based out of St. Patrick Square at 6767 Cote St. Luc Road.

The Society had a prominent role in the building of St. Patrick's Church, which opened in 1847, and in the creation of the Côte-des-Neiges Cemetery, which opened in 1885. The Society promoted the creation of St. Mary's Hospital, St. Patrick's Orphanage, English Catholic Charities, St. Patrick Square, and the Father Dowd Home for the Elderly. For the Society, the annual ball and luncheon held in March are social and fundraising events. The proceeds are donated to local Irish charities and used for scholarships and grants. The Society also organized the St. Patrick's Day Parade from 1834-1916. In 1928 a group known as the United Irish Societies of Montreal was formed and it now sponsors the city's annual St. Patrick's Parade.

Since 1988 the Society has published NUACHT (news), a quarterly newsletter that updates readers on the local Irish community and news from Ireland.


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Created by the Records Management and Archives Department in March 2012.
Input by Concordia University Libraries 2015-05-21.




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