The History of the Irish People in America


Description of the Book

1001 Things Everyone Should Know About Irish American History is a comprehensive and vividly illustrated celebration of Irish American enterprise, talent and courage. Organized around such broad subjects as Culture, Politics, Business, Religion, and Sports, it engagingly profiles the Irish American Presidents and Congressional Medal of Honor recipients and highlights the ten most important works of Irish American fiction, while offering many surprises. Alongside the exploits of Irish American soldiers like General Philip Sheridan, O’Donnell tells the incredible story of Jennie Hodgers, a Belfast-born woman who served in the Union Army disguised as a man. Elsewhere Bing Crosby shares the stage with Willis O’Brien, the brilliant pioneer of film animation and the man who brought King Kong to life. Entrepreneur Henry Ford is featured with Rose O’Neill, inventor of the wildy popular Kewpie Doll. And throughout readers will find answers to questions like who was the Murphy who dreamed up “Murphy’s Law”; why is a do-over shot in golf called a “mulligan”; what exactly does it mean to “scream like a banshee”; and, did Mrs. O’Leary’s cow really start the Great Chicago Fire of 1871? Written with the understanding that so much of the Irish experience in America is inseparable from the history of the Emerald Isle, 1001 Things also devotes substantial coverage to the history of Ireland. These ingredients combine to demonstrate how the Irish have shaped America – and make 1001 Things Everyone Should Know About Irish American History the ideal book for Irish Americans eager to discover more about their rich heritage.

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The Irish are an amazingly well-informed and literate people as a rule, but now with 1001 Things there will be no standing us! Edward O'Donnell has dug and delved into the archives and in simple, straightforward, yet scholarly prose presented us with a feast of fact. Being Irish is a twenty-four hour a day vocation and I can't think of a better book to help one along the Hibernian road. What the hell are you waiting for? Get the book and get reading!"
-- Malachy McCourt, author of A Monk Swimming: A Memoir and Singing My Him Song

"The 1002nd thing that everyone should know about Irish American history is that Edward O'Donnell has produced the most comprehensive, incisive and engaging treatment of the subject ever attempted. He has mastered the difficult challenge of presenting the facts without ever slipping into pedantry or trivia. This will be an important reference work for years to come."
-- Peter Quinn, author of Banished Children of Eve

"Edward O'Donnell's new book will be a lasting source of pleasure and edification for everyone interested in the history of Irish America. In a unique and highly engaging format, he gives us a rich and colorful portrait of one of America's most prominent ethnic groups. His grasp of the Irish antecedents is every bit as impressive as his command of the American context."
-- Kevin Kenny, Boston College, author of Making Sense of the Molly Maguires and The American Irish: A History

"Few people understand the Irish like Edward O'Donnell. Even fewer can explain Irish culture, history, politics and religion with such wit, insight and knowledge. Keep this immensely readable book handy, because you'll return to it time and time again."
-- Terry Golway, author of For the Cause of Liberty: A Thousand Years of Irish Heroes and The Irish in America