The Ancient Order of Hibernians is a longstanding Irish-American Catholic organization which can be found at aoh.com. The group was founded in New York’s and Pennsylvania’s coal-mining region in 1863 to promote the unity among Irish Catholics living in the United States against the discrimination they faced as Catholics and immigrants.
The group has included such members as president John F. Kennedy and astronaut James McDevitt among its ranks. The current president is Seamus Boyle and the national chaplain is the Reverend Thomas M. O’Donnell. A full list of officers can be found in the National Officers area of aoh.com.
AOH’s beliefs and activities are found under the National Programs area on the website aoh.com. The group is a Catholic organization and advocates strongly against abortion for the right to life, for a united Ireland, and for immigration laws that allow Irish citizens to immigrate to the U.S. more easily. Among its programs are charities, veterans support programs, and scholarships for the children and grandchildren of current Hibernians.
The History section of AOH.com contains several articles outlining the history of the Hibernians, of Ireland, and of Irish fraternal societies in general. The AOH Store section of the website contains products sold by this group, including pictures of stained glass windows of Irish Catholic cathedrals and the written histories behind them, Hibernian decals and logos, and Irish history DVDs.
Potential applicants to the Order can click on the Membership section of the website. Applicants must be male American citizens of Irish descent who are practicing Catholics. Applicants should apply to the AOH division in their own state. Membership in a separate junior division is also available for boys 8-16 who would otherwise be eligible as grown men.