Author: Jay P. Dolan
A history of the Irish in America from the eighteenth century to the present, by one of the nation’s most eminent scholars of the immigrant experience. Jay Dolan of the University of Notre Dame is one of America’s most acclaimed scholars of immigration and ethnic history. In The Irish Americans, he caps his decades of writing and teaching with a magisterial history of the Irish experience in the United States—the first general-reader’s account to be published since the 1960s. Dolan draws on his own original research and much other recent other scholarship to weave a fresh and vivid narrative. He follows the Irish from their first arrival in the American colonies through the bleak days of the potato famine that brought millions of poor immigrants; the years of ethnic prejudice and “No Irish Need Apply;” the rise of Irish political power and the heyday of Tammany politics; to the historic moment when John F. Kennedy was elected to the highest office in the land. Dolan evokes the ghastly ships crowded with men and women fleeing the potato blight; the vibrant life of Catholic parishes in cities like New York and Chicago; and the world of machine politics, where ward bosses often held court in the local saloon. Rich in colorful detail, balanced in judgment, and the most comprehensive work of its kind yet published, The Irish Americans will become a must-have volume for any reader with an interest in the Irish-American heritage.