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JFK ancestral home recovered JFK ancestral home recovered


JFK ancestral home has been recovered in Limerick 



JFK ancestral home recovered – Ruins of where the former US Presidents ancestors once lived have been recovered in Bruff Co. Limerick 

JFK ancestral home has been recovered in Limerick

By I Love Limerick Correspondent Jade Crowe

Ruins of a dwelling that once homed ancestors of former US President of John F Kennedy have been recovered just outside of Bruff, Co. Limerick.


It is a well-known fact that the infamous Kennedy family have Irish roots, the Kennedys come from County Wexford. However, it is JFK’s maternal roots, the Fitzgeralds that stem from Co. Limerick.

Ruins of a dwelling that once housed John F Kennedy’s mothers (Rose Kennedy) great grandparents have been recovered. The house which would have been in use during the 1820s, once housed JFK’s great great grandmother, Mary Lenihan, who married his great great grandfather, Edmund Fitzgerald.

This amazing historical discovery was recently made by local historian Declan Hehir.

During Caroline Kennedy’s visit to Bruff in 2013, there was speculation that the ruins of this dwelling once belonged to her ancestors, however, this is a discovery that has only recently been confirmed. Nevertheless, Caroline Kennedy and Jean Kennedy Smith visited the former farmhouse during their stay in Ireland.

JFK ancestral home

Thomas Fitzgerald Museum in Bruff

JFK’s ancestral history does not end just there in the small town of Bruff. The Thomas Fitzgerald Centre can also be found in Bruff, the building once served as a former courthouse. Thomas Fitzgerald was the great grandfather of JFK. The Thomas Fitzgerald Centre contains photographs from John F Kennedy’s visit to Ireland in 1963, along with photographs from when Caroline Kennedy (the only surviving child of John F and Jackie Kennedy) visited Bruff back in 2013. The centre also has a mural depicting the Fitzgerald family tree.

Outside of the Thomas Fitzgerald Centre, the life-size bronze statue of JFK can be found. The monument was unveiled in 2019 and pays the perfect tribute to John F Kennedy’s Limerick Heritage.

With this discovery, we hope that this can increase tourism in Limerick along with all of the other amazing historic features that Bruff has to offer.

A Timeline of the JFK’s Limerick Roots

JFK ancestral home

Depiction of the Fitzgerald family tree

Thomas Fitzgerald, son of Mary Lenihan and Edmund Kennedy, great grandfather to John F Kennedy, emigrated from Bruff Co. Limerick to Boston in the United States In 1852. The Bible that Thomas Fitzgerald was used by JFK at his inauguration when he was sworn in on Air Force 1 as the 35th US President. Thomas married Rosanna Fitzgerald Cox (also from Limerick). Rosanna would give birth to John F Fitzgerald, grandfather of John F Kennedy, the former Mayor of Boston, also known as Honey Fitz. JFK ancestral home recovered

In 1890, John F Fitzgerald’s wife Mary Ann Hannon gave birth to anthropologist Rose Elizabeth Fitzgerald, mother of John F Kennedy. In 1914, Rose married Joseph P. Kennedy Sr. and went on to have nine children, the second oldest being John F Kennedy.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, better known as JFK, served as President of the United States of America from 1961, until his tragic assassination in Dallas in 1963.

For more information on the Kennedy’s connection to Bruff go HERE 

For more stories on John F Kennedy go HERE 

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.