My name is Brianna Callahan and I am of Irish and Portuguese decent. My father’s family comes from Ireland and my mother’s family is from Portugal. I grew up in a small, Irish-American community, so I have always identified with being Irish. The Irish are the largest reported ancestry group in Massachusetts at 23.8%, compared to the 4.9% of Massachusetts residents who are of Portuguese decent. I know almost nothing about my Portuguese ancestry, but my father’s family is still in Ireland and I know much about my Irish ancestors. My family has taken a lot of pride in our Irish ancestry and culture which we explore through creative outlets such as film and dance. My uncle and father made a documentary movie about the Irish in Boston called the “The Green Square Mile,” a clip of which can be seen here-Green Square Mile. I have been Irish Dancing since I was a young girl, and it has provided me with strong cultural ties to my ancestry.
Both sides of my family have lived in Charlestown since they immigrated and my family resides in the same house that my father grew up in. My paternal grandfather worked as a longshore man in the Charlestown Navy Yard and my father is a lawyer. My maternal grandfather drove trailers for the U.S. Post Office and my mother is a registered nurse. I have a younger sister, Meaghan, who is a freshman at Providence College in Providence Rhode Island. I am a sophomore Political Science major and hope to pursue a career as a lawyer. I want to learn more about the relationship between sociology and political science. I enjoy playing golf, sailing, skiing, traveling, reading and am a member of the Irish Dance Club at Siena.