Prime Minister of Ireland visits Choctaw Nation members to thank them for gift sent 171 years ago

DURANT, Okla. (AP) -- The prime minister of Ireland visited and met with members of the Choctaw Nation in Oklahoma to thank them for a gift sent 171 years ago.

The Choctaws in 1847 collected $170 and sent the money to Dublin.

The money, worth an estimated $4,400 today, was used to help feed the Irish during a potato famine.

Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said Monday in Durant that the gift is a sacred memory and bond.

Choctaw Chief Gary Batton visited Ireland last year to attend the unveiling of the sculpture Kindred Spirits that commemorates the relationship between the two nations.

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