Deerfield Residence

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For the Chancery, see Embassy of the United States in Dublin
Deerfield Residence
American Ambassador's Residence Dublin.jpg
Deerfield Residence in Phoenix Park, Dublin
Deerfield Residence is located in Dublin
Deerfield Residence
Location within Dublin
Former namesChief Secretary's Lodge
General information
Architectural styleGeorgian
LocationChesterfield Avenue,
Phoenix Park,
Dublin, Ireland
Coordinates53°21′29.5″N 6°19′59.3″W / 53.358194°N 6.333139°W / 53.358194; -6.333139
Current tenantsUnited States Ambassador to Ireland (since 1927)
Construction started1774
OwnerUnited States government (since 2013)
U.S. Ambassador's Residence in Dublin
The Deerfield Residence during Fourth of July celebrations
Entrance to the U.S. Ambassador's Residence, Phoenix Park, Dublin 8

The Deerfield Residence (formerly the Chief Secretary's Lodge) is the official residence of the United States Ambassador to Ireland.

The premises has been the Ambassador's Official Residence since 1927, and was previously the Embassy of the United States of America in Ireland.[1] Deerfield Residence is a large 18th-century building, sitting on 62 acres (250,000 m²) of private grounds in the centre of the Phoenix Park in Dublin. It sits across from the official residence of the President of Ireland, Áras an Uachtaráin.[2]

Edward F. Crawford is the current ambassador, having presented his credentials to President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins on July 1, 2019.[3][4]


Chief Secretary's Lodge[edit]

The residence was originally built by Sir John Blaquiere, 1st Baron de Blaquiere, then Chief Secretary for Ireland, and taken over to become the Chief Secretary's Dublin residence in the late 18th century. Until the abolition of the post in 1922 it served as the official residence in Dublin of the Chief Secretary, the second-in-command in the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland's administration. The Chief Secretary played a role akin to a Prime Minister in the administration. Winston Churchill - later to be Prime Minister of the United Kingdom - spent some of his childhood living in the Phoenix Park. Following the establishment of the Irish Free State, a number of possible uses for the empty residences in the Phoenix Park were considered, from sale or demolition to turning the Chief Secretary's Lodge into a residence for the President of the Executive Council (Prime Minister).[5] In the mid-1920s plans were made to move the Governor-General of the Irish Free State, Timothy Michael Healy, from his large and costly Viceregal Lodge (now Áras an Uachtaráin) official residence to the smaller Chief Secretary's Lodge across the road.[6] Healy however expressed a wish that, if he was to move at all, it should be to his private home in Chapelizod. Believing that Healy's home was too exposed and a security risk, the Executive Council of the Irish Free State (cabinet) chose to leave Healy in the Viceregal Lodge. Instead the Chief Secretary's Lodge was rented on a ten-year lease to the United States government, to become a combined ambassador's residence and embassy, on February 19, 1927.

In January 1938, with the American lease nearly up, the Irish Government decided to make the Chief Secretary's Lodge the official residence of the President of Ireland.[7] The decision was rescinded when a report from the Office of Public Works (OPW) advised the Taoiseach, Éamon de Valera that the building was structurally unsound and would need expensive remedial work of the sort that could not be completed in time for the planned presidential entry into office in June.[8] The President was later installed in the vacant Viceregal Lodge nearby. The building was re-rented to the United States government. The embassy was later moved to a purpose-built building in Ballsbridge (Embassy of the United States in Dublin), leaving the lodge as the Ambassador's residence.

U.S. Ambassador's Residence[edit]

Extensive renovations to the house and property were made by the U.S. Government in 1952. In the 1970s, the grounds were christened the name Deerfield by the wife of a United States ambassador on account of the number of deer who roam in the open parkland around the mansion (Phoenix Park). The property consists of 62 acres of lawn, orchards and gardens on which are located the Ambassador's residence, three cottages and a security building at the front gate. The lower ground floor of the residence comprises a ballroom, reception and dining room, library, office, kitchens pantry, staff room and laundry. Six suites, bedroom, bathroom and dressing room, plus a sitting room are located on the upper floor. Outdoor amenities include a seasonal American football field, basketball court and tennis court.[9]

The front gate of the Ambassador's Residence, as viewed from Chesterfield Avenue.

It has been previously suggested that the building should become the residence of the Taoiseach. In 2005, the idea of turning the Chief Secretary's Lodge into a Taoiseach's residence was abandoned when the Office of Public Works instead applied for planning permission to turn the former ranger's residence (Steward's Lodge) in the grounds of the state guest palace, Farmleigh, into a smaller Taoiseach's residence instead.[10] On April 5, 2013 the Irish government sold Deerfield House along with an acre the lodge sits on in Phoenix Park to the United States Government permanently, with the remaining 61 acres still owned by the Irish government. The grounds are operated by the United States Department of State.

U.S. Presidents John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton have all stayed at Deerfield during Irish visits. Presidents Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush and Barack Obama stayed elsewhere for security reasons, due to the expanse of the property. Security at the grounds are provided externally by the Special Detective Unit (SDU), the main counter-terrorism and counter-intelligence branch of the Garda Síochána (Irish national police), and internally by the U.S. Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) and U.S. Marine Corps Embassy Security Group.[11]

Notable residents[edit]

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
United States of America

Starting with W. W. McDowell, the second envoy of the United States, the residence has been used by each subsequent envoy (until 1950) or ambassador (since 1950).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "US Embassy marks 50 years in Chancery building". RTÉ News. 23 May 2014. Retrieved 3 June 2014.
  2. ^ "Ambassador's residence". Embassy of the United States: Dublin - Ireland. Archived from the original on 14 August 2010. Retrieved 27 September 2010.
  3. ^ @USEmbassyDublin (29 June 2019). "Ambassador Designate Ed Crawford has arrived in Ireland!" (Tweet). Retrieved 29 June 2019 – via Twitter.
  4. ^ "Billionaire Irish-American takes office as US ambassador to Ireland after Áras ceremony". 1 July 2019. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
  5. ^ Dáil Éireann, Vol 8 Col 68 Committee on Finance 27 June 1924 Archived 7 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Committee on Finance. Governor-General's Establishment. 11 June 1926 Archived 7 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Report of President Clinton's visit to Ireland". Archived from the original on 14 March 2008. Retrieved 9 May 2006.
  8. ^ National Archives of Ireland.
  9. ^ "U.S. Ambassador's Residence in Dublin". U.S. State Department. Archived from the original on 14 August 2010. Retrieved 8 April 2014.
  10. ^ "US Ambassador's Residence, Phoenix Park. Dublin City – 1776". Curious Ireland. Retrieved 3 June 2014.
  11. ^ Cusack, Jim (24 November 2012). "Exposed: US embassy is top terror risk". Irish Independent. Retrieved 6 April 2014.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°21′29.5″N 6°19′59.3″W / 53.358194°N 6.333139°W / 53.358194; -6.333139