Diasporational Part Eleven: Squire Butler, the Kilkenny Man who Built a Fortune with Butter & Eggs.


By Niall McArdle In New York on September 2nd, 1882, two young Irish immigrants, James Butler and P.J. O’Connor, opened a small grocery store called P.J. O’Connor & Co. on 2nd Avenue. Within a year they had opened a second store at 10th Avenue. In 1884 Butler bought O’Connor out; the business was renamed James Butler Inc. […]

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Diasporational Part Seven: The Irish Revolutionary Who Wooed Hollywood Leading Ladies


Big, broad, brawny, with a warm speaking voice, he was popular with his audience and his leading ladies. As an actor he might have been merely adequate, but he gained quite a reputation for his Hollywood conquests. Married five times, he had affairs with Bette Davis and Jane Powell, among others. He was quoted as saying “no woman will ever own me, I own myself.”

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Diasporational Part Four: The Blind Irish Fiddler and “The Mutiny on the Bounty”


The Blind Irish Fiddler and The Mutiny on the Bounty By Niall McArdle Say the word mutiny and it is a fair bet that most people will immediately think Bounty. Maritime history is filled with tales of desertion and revolt against a ship’s captain, some bloodier than others, but none captures the imagination more than the defiance of […]

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Diasporational Part Three: The Irishman Who Taught Churchill Oratory


Winston Churchill is for many the epitome of English statesman, scholar and orator. With his V for Victory sign, his cigars and his bulldog frame, he stands as the Imperial Briton, the Victorian English gentleman who helped deliver the world from the Nazis.

It is ironic, therefore that this most English of leaders, famed for his speechmaking, borrowed much of his oratorical style from an Irishman.

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