US President only person to hold “Freedom of Co. Louth” honour

Louth County Council is delighted to note that President Joe Biden will undertake a visit to Co. Louth, as part of his state visit to Ireland this coming week.  On Wednesday afternoon next, 12th April 2023, it is expected that he will be paying a visit to both Carlingford and Dundalk. Final details of President Biden’s schedule for his visit to the County are awaited.

In a previous visit to Co. Louth in 2016, as Vice President, Louth County Council bestowed Joe Biden, with the Freedom of Co. Louth. He remains the only individual to hold this honour.

Councillor Conor Keelan, Cathaoirleach, Louth County Council said: “On behalf of the people of County Louth, we are thrilled to note that President Biden will be visiting us this coming Wednesday. He has close and long-standing ties with the county and the Cooley Peninsula, and we look forward to extending the warmest of welcomes to him. I have no doubt that he will witness a large and welcoming County Louth gathering.”

Joan Martin, Chief Executive, Louth County Council, said: “We are really honoured that Joe Biden has opted to come once again and visit us in Co. Louth, this time as President of the United States. We have been working with the Department of the Taoiseach, the Department of Foreign Affairs and the United States Embassy in our preparations for the visit; and are confident that he will receive a rousing welcome and great memories to take away from his visit.”

President Joe Biden is the second US president to formally visit Co. Louth. In 2000, an estimated 60,000 people gathered in the Market Square in Dundalk to see President Bill Clinton, who when referring to the peace process, famously said: “It’s a new day in Dundalk and a new day in Ireland”.