TOC: American Journal of Irish Studies

The latest volume of American Journal of Irish Studies, Volume 11, has been published.

A Word from the Editor
Linda Dowling Almeida

Mother Jones: Ireland to North America to Ireland
Elliott J. Gorn
Fifteenth Ernie O’Malley Lecture, 2013

Elliot J. Gorn’s fascinating look at Mother Jones is taken from his 2013 Ernie O’Malley lecture, Gorn looks at the evolution of the famous labor leader from her young days as immigrant and student Mary Harris to her life as Mary Jones, wife and mother, to her eventual incarnation as Mother Jones. Gorn argues that the persona of the public Mother Jones was a deliberate invention constructed from her private life experiences and political education in Ireland, Canada, and the United States.

Good Morning! First the Bad News . . . Reflections of a Morning Ireland Presenter
Cathal Mac Coille
Seventh Irish Institute Lecture, 2013

Cathal Mac Coille’s observes the state of Irish television news gathering from his seat as the anchor of Ireland’s most popular morning news program, Morning Ireland. In his 2013 Irish Institute lecture he describes the challenges and responsibilities faced by journalists of all kinds in an Ireland rocked in recent years by economic, political, cultural, and religious scandals and the subsequent public disillusion in its institutions.

Rights, Revolution, Republics 1750–1850. The Work and Works of William Sampson (1764–1836): A Chronology
Walter J. Walsh

Walter J. Walsh chronicles the life and career of political pamphleteer William Sampson from his emerging political radicalism in Ireland to his life in the United States and his participation in the battles for political independence and personal freedoms on both sides of the Atlantic. His landmark case was the 1813 People v. Philips trial which established the priest penitent privilege in American trial law. Walsh presented his paper initially at the 2013 Glucksman Ireland House conference “Religious Freedom in America, 1813 to 2013: Bicentennial Reflections on People v. Philips.”

People v. Philips in Light of Contemporary Developments in Ireland and the U.S.
Bryan McMahon

Drawing on his remarks from the April 2013 Glucksman Ireland House conference “Religious Freedom in America, 1813 to 2013: Bicentennial Reflections on People v. Philips,” McMahon examines the legacy of the court battle People v. Philips and its influence on courtroom tolerance of religious rights in the United States and Ireland over the past 200 years.

Irish Education: Rising to the Challenge?
Mary Hanafin

Former minister of education Mary Hanafin looks at the current state of Irish education. At the turn of the twenty-first century, Ireland was primarily white, ethnically homogenous, and Catholic. In 2014 the country is multiethnic, multilingual and multi-faith. That change puts pressure on all the major institutions of the country, but most particularly the schoolroom; this demographic diversity would be challenging in any generation but in the environment following the collapse of the Celtic Tiger the educational system had to adjust dramatically and quickly. From pre-K to university, Hanafin looks at the specific challenges and responses within the educational universe of Ireland.

Pasture to Pavement: Working Class Irish and Urban Workhorses in Nineteenth Century New York City
Hilary J. Sweeney

Hilary J. Sweeney considers the long relationship of the Irish and horses, from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day. In the post-Famine period horses were literally living machines powering the growing industrial economy and transport systems of New York City, and the immigrant Irish from rural farming communities had the skills to handle the animals as drivers, farriers, and groomers. As technology progressed and machines no longer required actual horse power, the population of horses and their handlers declined, but never completely disappeared. In the Manhattan of 2014 horses and carriages still carry passengers through Central Park and those horses are more than likely driven, housed, and shod by Irish immigrants or Irish Americans. Sweeney examines the evolution of the horse business through the decades, the issues raised by the presence of animals on city streets, the public acceptance of them and their handlers, and the fact that many of the controversies surrounding urban horses are the same today as they were in the late 1900s.

Politics and the Playhouse: Charles Erin Verner’s Eviction and the Construction of Irish-American Identity
Daphne Dyer Wolf

Daphne Dyer Wolf takes us back to the theater world of Irish America in the nineteenth century to retrace the life and career of an entertainer who adjusted quickly to his changing environment while responding to the mercurial tastes and politics of his audience. Giving the public what it wanted, Charles Erin Verner is an elusive character who was a popular figure of his time but whose historical footprint proves difficult to trace. His story illuminates the class-based nationalist politics of Irish America and the ability of an immigrant to remake himself in any image he wants.

Oral History: Horse-Powered, The Irish and the New York City Carriage Trade
Edited by Linda Dowling Almeida

In early 2014 Mayor Bill de Blasio promised to shut down the horse and carriage industry in New York City claiming that horses do not belong on city streets. He met with a storm of protest and at the end of 2014 the carriages are still rolling through the park. We decided to speak to some of the drivers, farriers, and stable owners and get a look at what for many is not only a traditionally Irish occupation, but a family business. Even our cover features one of the interviewees, Stephen Malone, driving Grand Marshal Mary Higgins Clark up Fifth Avenue in the 2011 St. Patrick’s Day Parade in a horse and carriage. All the interviews can be found in the Oral History Collection of the Archives of Irish America at NYU. Listen to our podcast, “Enjoying the Ride: The Irish in the NYC Horse and Carriage Industry, Then and Now” at
or through the Glucksman Ireland House iTunesU page.