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Meases and the Nesbits, Thomas FitzSimmons and Thomas Dolan of Philadelphia; Columbus O'Donnell and Luke Tiernan of Baltimore, all these have been leading merchants in their day. Few American financiers occupy a more conspicuous place than Thomas F. Ryan, and no great industrial leader has reached the pinnacle of success upon which stands the commanding figure of James J. Hill, both sons of Irishmen. The names of Anthony N. Brady, Eugene Kelly, James S. Stranahan, and James A. Farrell, president of the United States Steel Corporation, are household words in business and financial circles.
John Keating, the first paper manufacturer in New York (1775); Thomas Faye, the first to manufacture wall-paper by machinery, who won for this distinction the first gold medal of the American Institute; John and Edward McLoughlin of New York, for many years the leading publishers of illustrated books; and John Banigan of Providence, one of the largest manufacturers of rubber goods in America, were natives of Ireland. John O'Fallon and Bryan Mullanphy of St. Louis, and John McDonough of Baltimore, who amassed great wealth as merchants, were large contributors to charitable and educational institutions; William W. Corcoran, whose name is enshrined in the famous Art Gallery at Washington, contributed during his lifetime over five million dollars to various philanthropic institutions; and one of the most noted philanthropists in American history, and the first woman in America to whom a public monument was erected, was an Irishwoman, Margaret Haughery of New Orleans.
Irishmen have shown a remarkable aptitude for the handling of large contracts, and in this field have been prominent John H; O'Rourke, James D. Leary, James Coleman, Oliver Byrne, and John D. Crimmins in New York; John B. McDonald, the builder of New York's subways; George Law, projector and promoter of public works, steamship and railroad builder ; and John Roach, the famous ship-builder of Chester, Pa. John Sullivan, a noted American engineer one hundred years ago, compieted the Middlesex Canal; and John McL. Murphy, whose ability as a constructing engineer was universally recognized, rendered valuable service to the United States during the Civil War. Among pioneer ship-builders in America are noted Patrick Tracy from Wexford and Simon Forrester from Cork, who were both at Salem, Mass., during the period of the Revolution and rendered most valuable service to the patriot cause; and the O'Briens, Kavanaghs, and Sewalls in Maine.
But it is not in the material things of life alone that the Irish have been in the van. Thousands of Americans have been charmed by the operas of Victor Herbert, a grandson of Samuel Lover, and with lovers of music the strains of Patrick Sarsfield Gilmore's band still linger as a pleasant memory. Edward A. MacDowell, America's most famous composer, was of Irish descent. The colossal statute of “America" on the dome of the National Capitol was executed by Thomas Crawford, who was born in New York of Irish parents in 1814; Henry Inman, one of the very best of portrait painters, was also born in New York of Irish parents; John Singleton Copley, the distinguished artist, came to Boston from Co. Clare in 1736; Thompson, the sculptor, was born in Queen's Co.; another noted sculptor was William D. O'Donovan of Virginia; and Augustus Saint Gaudens, one of the greatest sculptors of modern times, was born in Dublin. Other sculptors of Irish race have been elsewhere mentioned. Among America's most talented artists and portrait painters may be mentioned George P. Healy, William J. Hennessy, Thomas Moran, Henry Pelham, Henry Murray, John Neagle, and William Magrath, all of Irish birth or descent.
Ireland has given many eminent churchmen to the United States. The three American Cardinals, Gibbons, Farley, and O'Connell, stand out prominently, as do Archbishops Carroll, Hughes, McCloskey, Kenrick, Ryan, Ireland, Glennon, Corrigan, and Keane, all of whom have shed lustre on the Church. History has given to an Irishman, Francis Makemie of Donegal, the credit of founding Presbyterianism in America, while among noted Presbyterian divines of Irish birth were James Waddell, known as "the blind preacher of the wilderness," Thomas Smyth, John Hall, Francis Allison, William Tennant, and James McGrady, all men of great ability and influence in their day. Samuel Finley, President of Princeton College in
1761, was a native of Armagh, and John Blair Smith, famous as a preacher throughout the Shenandoah Valley and the first president of Union College (1795), was of Irish descent. Among the pioneer preachers of the western wilderness were McMahon, Dougherty, Quinn, Burke, O'Cool, Delaney, McGee, and many others of Irish origin.
Irishmen and their sons have founded American towns and cities, and the capital of the State of Colorado takes its name from General James Denver, son of Patrick Denver, an emigrant from county Down in the year 1795. Sixty-five places in the United States are named after people bearing the Irish prefix "O" and upwards of 1000 after the “Macs”, and there are 253 counties of the United States and approximately 7000 places called by Irish family or place names. There are 24 Dublins, 21 Waterfords, 18 Belfasts, 16 Tyrones, 10 Limericks, 9 Antrims, 8 Sligos, 7 Derrys, 6 Corks, 5 Kildares, and so on.
Immigrant Irishmen have also been the founders of prominent American families. One of the most ancient of Irish patronymics, McCarthy, is found in the records of Virginia as early as 1635 and in Massachusetts in 1675, and all down through the successive generations descendants of this sept were among the leading families of the communities where they located. In Virginia, the McCormick, Meade, Lewis, Preston, and Lynch families; in the Carolinas, the Canteys, Nealls, Bryans, and Butlers; and in Maryland, the Carrolls and Dulanys are all descended from successful Irish colonizers.
Even from this very incomplete summary, we can see that Irish blood, brain, and brawn have been a valuable acquisition to the building of the fabric of American institutions, and that the sons of Ireland merit more prominent recognition than has been accorded them in the pages of American history. The pharisees of history may have withheld from Ireland the credit that is her due, but, thanks to the never-failing guidance of the records, we are able to show that at all times, whether they came as voluntary exiles or were driven from their homes by the persecutions of government, her sons have had an honorable part in every upward movement in American life. Testimony adduced from the sources from which this imperfect sketch is drawn cannot be called into question, and its perusal
by those who so amusingly glorify the “Anglo-Saxon" as the founder of the American race and American institutions would have a chastening influence on their ignorance of early American history, and would reopen the long vista of the years, at the very beginning of which they would see Celt and Teuton, Saxon and Gaul, working side by side solidifying the fulcrum of the structure on which this great nation rests.
The archives, registers, records, reports, and other official documents mentioned in the text; the various Town, County, and State Histories; the collections and publications of the following societies : Massachusetts Historical Society, Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania, New York Historical Society (34 vols.), New York Genealogical and Biographical Society (44 vols.), Maine Historical Society, Rhode Island Historical Society, Connecticut Historical Society, South Carolina Historical Society, and American Historical Society; New England Historical and Genealogical Register (67 vols., Boston, 1847-1913); New England Historical and Biographical Record ; Hakluyt: Voyages, Navigations, Traffiques, and Discoveries of the English Nation (London, 1607); Dobbs: The Trade and Improvement of Ireland (Dublin, 1729); Hutchinson: History of Massachusetts from the First Settlement in 1628 until 1750 (Salem, 1795); Proud : History of Pennsylvania, 1681-1770 (Philadelphia, 17971798); Savage: Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England (Boston, 1860-1862); Morris (ed.): The Makers of New York (Philadelphia, 1895); Pope : The Pioneers of Massachusetts (Boston, 1900), The Pioneers of Maine and New Hampshire (Boston, 1908); Richardson: Side-lights on Maryland History (Baltimore, 1913); Spencer: History of the United States; Ramsay: History of the United States; Prendergast: Cromwellian Settlement of Ireland.
THE IRISH IN CANADA
By James J. Walsh, M.D., Ph.D., Litt.D., Sc.D.
THEN Wolfe captured Quebec and Canada came under
British rule, some of the best known of his officers and several of his men were Irish. After the Peace was signed many of them settled in Canada, not a few of them marrying French wives, and as a consequence there are numerous Irish, Scotch, and English names among the French speaking inhabitants of Lower Canada. Two of Wolfe's officers, Colonel Guy Carleton, born at Strabane in the county Tyrone, and General Richard Montgomery, born only seven miles away at Convoy, in the same county, were destined to play an important rôle in the future history of Canada. Montgomery was in command of the Revolutionary Army from the Colonies, when it attempted to take Quebec, and Carleton, who had been a trusted friend of General Wolfe, was in command of the Canadian forces. The two men were the lives of their respective commands, and with the death of Montgomery Carleton's victory was assured.
Carleton was made Governor-in-Chief of Canada, and during the trying years of the early British rule of New France and the American Revolution, his tact did more than anything else to save Canada for the British. Bibaud, the French historian, says, "the man to whom the administration of the government was entrusted had known how to make the Canadians love him, and this contributed not a little to retain at least within the bounds of neutrality those among them who might have been able, or who believed themselves able, to ameliorate their lot by making common cause with the insurgent colonies.” Shortly after being made governor, Carleton went to England and secured the passage of the Quebec Act through the English parliament, which gave the Canadian French assurance that they were to be ruled without oppression by the British Government. Subsequently, in 1786, Carleton, as Lord Dorchester, became the first governor-general of Canada, being given jurisdiction over Nova Scotia and New Brunswick as well as Upper and Lower Canada, and to him