The bilingual program book, printed in English and Irish, was organized by the Central Council of Irish County Clubs, Inc, with Richard J. Cardinal Cushing, Archbishop of Boston, listed as the event’s patron.
Over 1,500 contestants participated in 72 different events, ranging from competitions in accordion, violin, harp, piano and Irish war pipes. Among the winners were Joe Derrane of Roxbury, who won first for senior accordion solo, with Joseph Joyce of Jamaica Plain and Tom Senier of Dorchester tied for second place. Paul Derrane, Joe’s younger brother, took first place for junior accordion solo and John F. Conroy of
won second in the intermediate accordion category.
Frank Neylon of
took first in the senior flute solo, and Veronica Fay took first in senior
piano solo. Joyce Berry of Cambridge Hingham took first in solo harp playing, and Jane Nash of took first for
Irish war (uilleann) pipe solo. Springfield
The team of Mary Murphy, Lorraine Murphy, Jean Costello and Mary Conroy took first in the senior four-hand reel competition.
In addition, there were matches in Gaelic football and Irish hurling, set dancing and step dancing competitions, Gaelic recitations and storytelling and essay contests on the topic of “Commodore John Barry, Fatherof the American Navy.”
The content of the program book was patriotic and nationalistic. The Feis was dedicated to Dr. Douglas Hyde, co-founder of the Gaelic League and President of
, “who awakened a slumbering,
almost defeated people to a consciousness of the power and beauty of their
language and their ancient culture. He
opened up new vistas of freedom of thought and developed fresh concepts of
political freedom.” A suggested reading list in the program
included works by Irish rebels General Tom Barry and Ernie O’Malley. Ireland
The competition winners received their trophies and medals at a special ceremony at the
Boston Latin School
on September 13, 1950.
In 1951, the Greater Boston Feis moved to a larger venue at Suffolk Downs Racetrack in East Boston.