This film is part of Free

From Here to the Whitehouse

Discover the ancestral home that formed American Presidents, astronauts and the American dream.

Documentary 1987 14 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for Northern Ireland Screen


From Here... to the White House traces the links between the north of Ireland and America, not least the fact that some 17 American Presidents have an intangible connection to Ulster. More widely, the film tells the story of the quarter of a million Ulster Scots who emigrated to America in the 18th century - the lives they left behind and their hopes of making a home in the new world. Now a generation has returned to Ulster in search of their roots.

The 250,000 Presbyterian Ulstermen who left for America in the 18th Century played a pivotal role in shaping the society and pioneer spirit of the fledgling nation. Neil Armstrong - whose forebears hailed from County Fermanagh - is just one of the many Americans whose ancestral roots lie in Northern Ireland. The exhibits at the Ulster Folk Museum and the Ulster American Folk Park provide insights into everyday life in the North of Ireland in the 18th century and conditions for those making the journey to America. This film was produced by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board. It captures Northern Irish tourism at an intriguing time, as conflict escalated so did the pressure to close the Tourist Board.