• It has come to our attention that some users may have been "banned" when they tried to change their passwords after the site was hacked due to a glitch in the old vBulletin software. This would have occurred around the end of February and does not apply after the site was converted to Xenforo. If you believe you were affected by this, please contact a staff member or use the Contact us link at the bottom of any forum page.

The Irish and Tammany Hall New York


JohnD66

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2010
Messages
3,316
Great article here by Shay Dunphy on how the immigrant Irish built a political bastion out of Tammany hall in New York. The cynic in me says that the Irish brought their affinity for secret societies, violent electoral fraud and aversion to real social reform with us across the Atlantic. The likes of Richard 'Boss' Corker was interested only in getting re-elected and not with such trifles as workers' rights (at this time New York was an industrial city and most Irish were workers), tenants' rights or slum housing.


‘Solid Men’ – The Irish in New York Politics, 1880-1920 | The Irish Story
 

Clanrickard

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 25, 2008
Messages
33,035
the Irish brought their affinity for secret societies, violent electoral fraud and aversion to real social reform with us across the Atlantic.
You mean they were Orangemen?
 

Malcolm Redfellow

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
3,982
Website
redfellow.blogspot.com
Twitter
mredfellow
My seminal texts here would include Noel Ignatiev's How the Irish Became White.

The whole history of Tammany (see Gustavus Myers for the spadework, back in 1901, expanded in 1917) was based in corruption long before it became the base of immigrant Irish power and patronage in NYC, long before it was the creature of Boss Tweed, his cronies and acolytes.

May I be allowed to note that Tammany was corrupt from the very start: allegedly the Society of St Tammany was founded on 12th May 1789 by William Mooney, upholsterer of 23 Nassau Street, NYC, known to be a deserter from the revolutionary Army and believed to have taken the King's shilling thereafter. Mooney came to prominence in large part because he dressed the upholsterers' float in the 1788 Constitutional parade — and then traded on the fame it brought him.

The 1811 foundation stone of Tammany Hall (corner of Park Row and Frankfort Street) announces that Mooney was the founder and first Sachem. In fact, the Tammany Society of New York was the latest of a whole slew of 'nativist' Tammany Societies — the "father house" was in Philadelphia — and was brought to NYC by John Pintard, "merchant, philanthropist and scholar". Pintard was a bankrupt from New Jersey, who crossed the Hudson, made good, and became a leading light in establishing the New York Historical Society — his papers are in the Society's archives at 170 Central Park West).
 

rash mulligan

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 24, 2010
Messages
3,149
"The likes of Richard 'Boss' Corker was interested only in getting re-elected and not with such trifles"

Ah so that's where Obama gets it from.
 

Hitch 22

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 26, 2011
Messages
5,220
There has been a strange trend between Irish American and the Oul Sod down through the years which stems all the way from Tammany Hall.

Judge Daniel F. Cohalan who was Grand Sachem of Tammany Hall from 1908 to 1911 and John Devoy opposed Eamon De Valera when he arrived in America in 1919 to fund raise and seek support for the declared Irish Republic.
De Valera of course had taken over the republican leadership after Pearse and Casement who had been in close contact with Cohalan and Devoy were executed after the 1916 Rising.
Cohalan and Devoy had sought German assistance for the Irish Volunteers but toned down their pro-German views after the Democrat President Wilson led America in World War I in 1917.
Cohalan and Devoy sought to persuade President Wilson and the Democratic Party to instead recognize the Irish Republic under Wilson's Fourteen Points. The split meant that most Irish Americans backed De Valera and denied their support for Wilson their support in the 1920 President election.
Devoy supported the Anglo-Irish Treaty in 1922 and the Irish Free State and when he died in 1928 his body was buried in Glasnevin Cemetary.
Joseph McGarrity was the key ally of De Valera versus Cohalan and Devoy and he became the leader of the American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic.
He opposed the Treaty in 1922 and supported the pro-Nazi IRA during World War 2 after earlier falling out with De Valera when Fianna Fáil entered Dáil Éireann.
There was a strong anti-British sentiment in the Democratic Party which was fueled by working class Irish Americans, German Americans and Italian Americans who still had strong contacts with nationalists in their old countries. All three communities were also virulently anti-Semitic in the 1930s.
It is no accident that both American Ambassador to Britain Joseph P. Kennedy was opposed to aid to Britain in 1940 and Charles Lindbergh were against American participation until the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.
After the Troubles broke out Ted Kennedy lobbied Jimmy Carter to ban U.S. weapons sales to the RUC and he and other leading Democrats opening supported a British pull out from Northern Ireland at a time when the Republic of Ireland was jailing members of the IRA for shooting Gardaí.
The Republican Senator Peter T. King who courts the support of conservative Irish American Catholic once openly supported the IRA and even compared Gerry Adams to George Washington.
This went completely against the majority of nationalist opinion in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland at the time where support for physical force republicanism was confined to a minority.
Conservative Catholic Irish Americans were fed an Irish nationalist line by Sinn Féin propagandists who were supportive of the Soviet Union, establishing a Marxist state and took guns from Gaddaffi who blew up a U.S. Panam airliner.
However after 9/11 while Shinners were comparing George W. Bush to Hitler, King openly supported the Iraq War and praised the killing of Bin Laden and supports cracking down on Muslim fundamentalists.
Many hardline Irish republicans support the Palestinians, hope the Americans are defeated in Afghanistan and will tell you America got what it deserved on 9/11 while if you said the same thing to working class Irish Americans they would kick your head in.
 

eoghanacht

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2006
Messages
33,340
Always been fascinated by Tammany Hall.

The shenanigans that both parties in America got up to was out and out gangsterism.
 

eoghanacht

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2006
Messages
33,340
There has been a strange trend between Irish American and the Oul Sod down through the years which stems all the way from Tammany Hall.

Judge Daniel F. Cohalan who was Grand Sachem of Tammany Hall from 1908 to 1911 and John Devoy opposed Eamon De Valera when he arrived in America in 1919 to fund raise and seek support for the declared Irish Republic.
De Valera of course had taken over the republican leadership after Pearse and Casement who had been in close contact with Cohalan and Devoy were executed after the 1916 Rising.


Cohalan and Devoy had sought German assistance for the Irish Volunteers but toned down their pro-German views after the Democrat President Wilson led America in World War I in 1917.
Cohalan and Devoy sought to persuade President Wilson and the Democratic Party to instead recognize the Irish Republic under Wilson's Fourteen Points. The split meant that most Irish Americans backed De Valera and denied their support for Wilson their support in the 1920 President election.
Devoy supported the Anglo-Irish Treaty in 1922 and the Irish Free State and when he died in 1928 his body was buried in Glasnevin Cemetary


.
Joseph McGarrity was the key ally of De Valera versus Cohalan and Devoy and he became the leader of the American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic.
He opposed the Treaty in 1922 and supported the pro-Nazi IRA during World War 2 after earlier falling out with De Valera when Fianna Fáil entered Dáil Éireann.
There was a strong anti-British sentiment in the Democratic Party which was fueled by working class Irish Americans, German Americans and Italian Americans who still had strong contacts with nationalists in their old countries. All three communities were also virulently anti-Semitic in the 1930s.
It is no accident that both American Ambassador to Britain Joseph P. Kennedy was opposed to aid to Britain in 1940 and Charles Lindbergh were against American participation until the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.
After the Troubles broke out Ted Kennedy lobbied Jimmy Carter to ban U.S. weapons sales to the RUC and he and other leading Democrats opening supported a British pull out from Northern Ireland at a time when the Republic of Ireland was jailing members of the IRA for shooting Gardaí.


The Republican Senator Peter T. King once openly supported the IRA and even compared Gerry Adams to George Washington.
These went completely against the majority of nationalist opinion in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland at the time where support for physical force republicanism was confined to a minority.
Conservative Catholic Irish Americans were fed an Irish nationalist line by Sinn Féin propagandists who were supportive of the Soviet Union, establishing a Marxist state and took guns from Gaddaffi who blew up a U.S. Panam airliner.
However after 9/11 while Shinners were comparing George W. Bush to Hitler, King openly supported the Iraq War and praised the killing of Bin Laden and supports cracking down on Muslim fundamentalists.
 

JohnD66

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2010
Messages
3,316
There has been a strange trend between Irish American and the Oul Sod down through the years which stems all the way from Tammany Hall.

Judge Daniel F. Cohalan who was Grand Sachem of Tammany Hall from 1908 to 1911 and John Devoy opposed Eamon De Valera when he arrived in America in 1919 to fund raise and seek support for the declared Irish Republic.
De Valera of course had taken over the republican leadership after Pearse and Casement who had been in close contact with Cohalan and Devoy were executed after the 1916 Rising.
Cohalan and Devoy had sought German assistance for the Irish Volunteers but toned down their pro-German views after the Democrat President Wilson led America in World War I in 1917.
Cohalan and Devoy sought to persuade President Wilson and the Democratic Party to instead recognize the Irish Republic under Wilson's Fourteen Points. The split meant that most Irish Americans backed De Valera and denied their support for Wilson their support in the 1920 President election.
Devoy supported the Anglo-Irish Treaty in 1922 and the Irish Free State and when he died in 1928 his body was buried in Glasnevin Cemetary.
Joseph McGarrity was the key ally of De Valera versus Cohalan and Devoy and he became the leader of the American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic.
He opposed the Treaty in 1922 and supported the pro-Nazi IRA during World War 2 after earlier falling out with De Valera when Fianna Fáil entered Dáil Éireann.
There was a strong anti-British sentiment in the Democratic Party which was fueled by working class Irish Americans, German Americans and Italian Americans who still had strong contacts with nationalists in their old countries. All three communities were also virulently anti-Semitic in the 1930s.
It is no accident that both American Ambassador to Britain Joseph P. Kennedy was opposed to aid to Britain in 1940 and Charles Lindbergh were against American participation until the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.
After the Troubles broke out Ted Kennedy lobbied Jimmy Carter to ban U.S. weapons sales to the RUC and he and other leading Democrats opening supported a British pull out from Northern Ireland at a time when the Republic of Ireland was jailing members of the IRA for shooting Gardaí.
The Republican Senator Peter T. King who courts the support of conservative Irish American Catholic once openly supported the IRA and even compared Gerry Adams to George Washington.
This went completely against the majority of nationalist opinion in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland at the time where support for physical force republicanism was confined to a minority.
Conservative Catholic Irish Americans were fed an Irish nationalist line by Sinn Féin propagandists who were supportive of the Soviet Union, establishing a Marxist state and took guns from Gaddaffi who blew up a U.S. Panam airliner.
However after 9/11 while Shinners were comparing George W. Bush to Hitler, King openly supported the Iraq War and praised the killing of Bin Laden and supports cracking down on Muslim fundamentalists.
Many hardline Irish republicans support the Palestinians, hope the Americans are defeated in Afghanistan and will tell you America got what it deserved on 9/11 while if you said the same thing to working class Irish Americans they would kick your head in.
Tammany Hall and Clan na Gael/ NORAID are are two very different subjects.
 

JohnD66

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2010
Messages
3,316
I was particularly, eh 'impressed' by this passage from the article. I'm not sure we even managed to be this corrupt on this side of the Atlantic.

Everyone on the payroll, whether in the police department or elsewhere, had a duty to pay a percentage of their income to Tammany Hall. This was then used to pay off voters in the districts, to convince them that a Tammany candidate up for election for a municipal post was the man for the job. However, not all of the money was used for this purpose. “Boss” Croker also attained for himself a mansion off Fifth Avenue, was able to regularly summer in Europe and also kept a racehorse. All this despite the fact that the only public office Croker ever held was that of the relatively minor position of city chamberlain.
 

Malcolm Redfellow

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
3,982
Website
redfellow.blogspot.com
Twitter
mredfellow
After re-reading some of the previous posts, I found myself wondering: Are we happy with where this thread has to be heading?

Let's reprise a few well-established heads-of-debate (any, or all of which deserve much more detailed deliberation than here, but just a couple for starters):

1. Why were Irish Catholics not "white on arrival" in the United States?

The first Congress passed (26 March 1790) a naturalisation law:

That any alien, being a free white person, who shall have resided within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States for the term of two years, may be admitted to become a citizen thereof, on application to any common law court of record, in any one of the states whereof he shall have resided for the term of one year at least, and making proof to the satisfaction of such court, that he is a person of good character, and taking the oath or affirmation prescribed by law ...
Yet there was a strong prejudice — not because of any Irishness (though that was implicit in describing the protestant Ulster Scots as "Scotch Irish"), but because of Catholicism. Now there's an ingrained prejudice that stretches back to the earliest colonial days.

There is, perhaps, a further element: the Irish had rejected colonial English overlordship — since the English system was the foundation of American institutions, it was by definition the 'best' — and therefore the Irish were degenerate and vicious. Cue Edmund Burke:

Indeed, in England, the double name of the complainants, Irish and Papists, (it would be hard to say which singly was the most odious,) shut up the hearts of every one against them. Whilst that temper prevailed, (and it prevailed in all its force to a time within our memory,) every measure was pleasing and popular just in proportion as it tended to harass and ruin a set of people who were looked upon as enemies to God and man, and, indeed, as a race of bigoted savages who were a disgrace to human nature itself.
2. How did the Irish "become white"?

Ignatiev (see my previous posting) assumes, in essence, this was achieved by acculturation — which meant defending and advancing the "White Republic" and its capitalist bastions.

— "Ooh, err, miss! Doesn't that mean we ought to define "whiteness"?"
— "Yes, indeed, wee Charlie, and also "capitalist". But please not this very moment, else we'll never get anywhere."​

In the first instance the Irish immigrants of the mid-19th century achieved their positions, and came to have a strong hand in controlling the metropolitan East Coast, by under-cutting free black labour, then by unionising and defending their gains (which is where Tammany comes in), and thereby establishing a "colour bar". This is an unpleasant topic (and one which I'm currently steering well clear from — which is why I'm leary of where the thread might be going).

3. Onwards and upwards (degrees of graft)

Having infiltrated the city governments, higher tiers became the next target. That, in turn, meant the Irish-Americans had to be strong in the Democratic Party — and take on their natural political enemies in the Republican ascendancy. The proper testimony here should by George Washington Plunkitt — Plunkitt of Tammany, as recorded by William L. Riordon:

This city is ruled entirely by the hayseed legislators at Albany. I’ve never known an upstate Republican who didn’t want to run things here, and I’ve met many thousands of them in my long service in the Legislature. The hayseeds think we are like the Indians to the National Government – that is, sort of wards of the State, who don’t know how to look after ourselves and have to be taken care of by the Republicans of St. Lawrence, Ontario, and other backwoods counties Why should anybody be surprised because ex-Governor Odell comes down here to direct the Republican machine? Newburg ain’t big enough for him. He, like all the other upstate Republicans, wants to get hold of New York City. New York is their pie.

Say, you hear a lot about the downtrodden people of Ireland and the Russian peasants and the sufferin’ Boers. Now, let me tell you that they have more real freedom and home rule than the people of this grand and imperial city. In England, for example, they make a pretense of givin’ the Irish some self-government. In this State the Republican government makes no pretense at all. It says right out in the open: “New York City is a nice big fat Goose. Come along with your carvin’ knives and have a slice.” They don’t pretend to ask the Goose’s consent.

We don’t own our streets or our docks or our waterfront or anything else. The Republican Legislature and Governor run the whole shootin’ match. We’ve got to eat and drink what they tell us to eat and drink, and have got to choose our time for eatin’ and drinkin’ to suit them. If they don’t feel like takin’ a glass of beer on Sunday, we must abstain. If they have not got any amusements up in their backwoods, we mustn’t have none. We’ve got to regulate our whole lives to suit them. And then we have to pay their taxes to boot.

Did you ever go up to Albany from this city with a delegation that wanted anything from the Legislature? No? Well, don’t. The hayseeds who run all the committees will look at you as if you were a child that didn’t know what it wanted, and will tell you in so many words to go home and be good and the Legislature will give you whatever it thinks is good for you. They put on a sort of patronizing air, as much as to say, “These children are an awful lot of trouble. They’re wantin’ candy all the time, and they know that it will make them sick. They ought to thank goodness that they have us to take care of them.” And if you try to argue with them, they’ll smile in a pityin’ sort of way as if they were humorin’ a spoiled child.

But just let a Republican farmer from Chemung or Wayne or Tioga turn up at the Capital. The Republican Legislature will make a rush for him and ask him what he wants and tell him if he doesn’t see what he wants to ask for it. If he says his taxes are too high, they reply to him: “All right, old man, don’t let that worry you. How much do you want us to take off?”

“I guess about fifty per cent will about do for the present,” says the man. “Can you fix me up?”

“Sure,” the Legislature agrees. “Give us somethin’ harder, don’t be bashful. We’ll take off sixty per cent if you wish. That’s what we’re here for.”

Then the Legislature goes and passes a law increasin’ the liquor tax or some other tax in New York City, takes a half of the proceeds for the State Treasury and cuts down the farmers’ taxes to suit. It’s as easy as rollin’ off a log – when you’ve got a good workin’ majority and no conscience to speak of.
Sadly there's a lot more, in the same vein, if you press me.
 
Last edited:

mido

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 28, 2007
Messages
3,374
Irish went into political crime, Italians organised crime -same outcomes
 

cropbeye

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
944
My seminal texts here would include Noel Ignatiev's How the Irish Became White.

The whole history of Tammany (see Gustavus Myers for the spadework, back in 1901, expanded in 1917) was based in corruption long before it became the base of immigrant Irish power and patronage in NYC, long before it was the creature of Boss Tweed, his cronies and acolytes.

You seem to have a very naive view of what society was like in the early 1800's. There was not much social justice to be found anywhere. Women didn't have the vote. There was still a lot of establishment antipathy to Roman Catholics and Irish Catholics in particular. Government itself was not clean fair or tolerant in the modern sense. You seem to believe in a benign establishment at the top governing on total logic and absent of prejudice. There was certainly no welfare in the modern sense. While society was a melting pot it was mostly each community for itself.



May I be allowed to note that Tammany was corrupt from the very start: allegedly the Society of St Tammany was founded on 12th May 1789 by William Mooney, upholsterer of 23 Nassau Street, NYC, known to be a deserter from the revolutionary Army and believed to have taken the King's shilling thereafter. Mooney came to prominence in large part because he dressed the upholsterers' float in the 1788 Constitutional parade — and then traded on the fame it brought him.

The 1811 foundation stone of Tammany Hall (corner of Park Row and Frankfort Street) announces that Mooney was the founder and first Sachem. In fact, the Tammany Society of New York was the latest of a whole slew of 'nativist' Tammany Societies — the "father house" was in Philadelphia — and was brought to NYC by John Pintard, "merchant, philanthropist and scholar". Pintard was a bankrupt from New Jersey, who crossed the Hudson, made good, and became a leading light in establishing the New York Historical Society — his papers are in the Society's archives at 170 Central Park West).
 

Malcolm Redfellow

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
3,982
Website
redfellow.blogspot.com
Twitter
mredfellow
cropbeye @ 12:45 pm

I'm taking it that the reply (and the put-down) is interpolated as the second paragraph of that quotation:

You seem to have a very naive view of what society was like in the early 1800's[SUP]1[/SUP]. There was not much social justice to be found anywhere[SUP]2[/SUP]. Women didn't have the vote[SUP]3[/SUP]. There was still a lot of establishment antipathy to Roman Catholics and Irish Catholics in particular[SUP]4[/SUP]. Government itself was not clean fair or tolerant in the modern sense[SUP]5[/SUP]. You seem to believe in a benign establishment at the top governing on total logic and absent of prejudice[SUP]6[/SUP]. There was certainly no welfare in the modern sense[SUP]7[/SUP]. While society was a melting pot it was mostly each community for itself[SUP]8[/SUP].
So:

[SUP]1[/SUP] Your unsupported value judgement. I try to educate myself on just that. My ancestors in the early 1800s were coal-miners and agricultural labourers — for both occupations I have considerable sympathy, particularly when I review the childhood mortality and early deaths. By the way, I and my pen-name are both male, so the correct form is naïf.

[SUP]2[/SUP] Self-evident.

[SUP]3[/SUP] Ditto; but what is the relevance in this context?

[SUP]4[/SUP] See my post at 12.25 pm, above.

[SUP]5[/SUP] An odious (and odorous) comparison!

[SUP]6[/SUP] I certainly do not. Please give a base for that assumption; and I'll correct it.

[SUP]7[/SUP] Another value judgement. I could equally argue, with evidence, in many ways the social support among peer-groups was far better than today. Else you are using a very limited definition of "welfare". Tammany was an effective "welfare" — and, in places such as Covington, Louisiana, its surviving (highly respectable) agencies remain so today, particularly as a pressure group.

[SUP]8[/SUP] I'm less convinced that there was much social movement, though matters improved for some as industrialisation advanced.
 

Cellach

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
5,094
Yet there was a strong prejudice — not because of any Irishness (though that was implicit in describing the protestant Ulster Scots as "Scotch Irish"), but because of Catholicism. Now there's an ingrained prejudice that stretches back to the earliest colonial days.
 
Top