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Showing posts from November, 2020

Irish Immigrant Annie Glover Hung in Boston during Witch Craze in 1688

On November 16, 1988  Boston City Council  proclaimed Goody Glover Day, in tribute to Goodwife Ann Glover, an Irish women accused of being a witch by Cotton Mather and other Boston Puritan leaders.   Raymond L. Flynn was mayor . An editorial in The Boston Globe, dated November 17, 1988, noted that a group of academics and a businessman "have formed a committee to erect a memorial on Boston Common or at the State House, where statues commemorate Anne Hutchinson and Mary Dyer, who were also victims of religious intolerance.   A memorial to Glover would be a reaffirmation by today's citizens that bigotry in any form is intolerable. The efforts deserve support." Glover was an Irish captive sent to Barbados by Oliver Cromwell in the 1650s.  Her husband died there, and by 1680 she and her daughter were living in Boston, employed as housekeepers by John Goodwin.  In summer 1688 four of the five Goodwin children fell ill.  The doctor concluded "nothing but a hellish Witchcra

Boston Massacre Memorial Unveiled on Boston Common on November 14, 1888

On November 14, 1888, state and city officials and citizens from throughout greater Boston officially unveiled  the  Boston Massacre Memorial  on the Tremont Street Mall on Boston Common.    The memorial commemorates the infamous episode in which five men were shot and killed by British soldiers in Boston on March 5, 1770, an event that helped launch the Revolutionary War.  The five martyrs were Crispus Attucks, Samuel Gray, Jonas Caldwell, Samuel Maverick and Patrick Carr.  Carr was an Irishman and the last to die from his wounds.  Read more about the Irish connections to the Boston Massacre. Governor Oliver Ames attended, along with  Mayor Hugh O'Brien , the city's first Irish-born mayor of Boston.  The chairman of the memorial committee was William H. Dupree , a former slave who fought in the American Civil War with the 55th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, an offshoot of the famed 54th Regiment of Black soldiers.  Also on the committee was Irish immigrant John Boyle O’Re

John F. Kennedy - the Quintessential War Hero

  President John F. Kennedy was a decorated war hero who led his men to safety after their ship, the PT 109, was torpedoed by a Japanese destroyer during World War II.   The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum in Boston has a fascinating account of this episode, and Kennedy's military service, and a significant collection of war memorabilia.  See materials here . The John Fitzgerald Kennedy National Historic Site in Brookline, MA also has details of Kennedy's wartime service.  During his presidency, President Kennedy attended Veterans Day ceremonies to honor the military, while also aspiring to a peaceful world. “On this day of remembrance, let us pray in the name of those who have fought in this country's wars… that there will be no veterans of any further war -- not because all shall have perished but because all shall have learned to live together in peace,” he said in remarks at Veteran's Day ceremony, November 11, 1961. Find out more about Presiden

Boston's Purple Shamrock, James Michael Curley, died on November 12, 1958

Twin Curley statues at Union Park on Congress Street, Boston James Michael Curley , the larger-than-life political figure who dominated Boston and Massachusetts politics for half a century, died on November 12, 1958.   Over 100,000 people passed by his coffin at the Hall of Flags in the Massachusetts State House, according to a story in  The Boston Globe .  “The rich and the humble, Democrats and Republicans, bared the depth of their tribune in whispered prayers and unrestrained tears,” wrote the  Globe . Then a final process drove Curley's body through the streets of Boston and then to Holy Cross Cathedral in the South End, where his son, Reverend Francis S. Curley, S.J., celebrated mass along with Richard Cardinal Cushing of  South Boston .   Curley is buried the  Old   Calvary   Cemetery  in  Boston .  Born on November 20, 1874 on Northampton Street in Roxbury, Curley's political career was unparalleled.  Curley served four four-year terms as mayor of  Boston , in 1914, 1922

John Fitzgerald, grandfather of JFK, wins Boston U.S. Congressional Seat in November, 1894

Plaque to John F. Fitzgerald in Boston's North End . On November 6, 1894, John Francis Fitzgerald of Boston's North End was elected as U.S. Congressman, representing the Boston Ninth District. He assumed office in March 1895 and served as U.S. Congressman until 1901. The grandfather of U.S. President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, Fitzgerald was an audacious, colorful politician whose melodious singing voice earned him the nickname Honey Fitz. Born in Boston's North End on February 11, 1863, Fitzgerald was the son of Irish immigrant Thomas Fitzgerald of Limerick and Mary Josephine Hannon of Acton, MA. His daughter, Rose Fitzgerald , married Joseph P. Kennedy from East Boston, spawning the Kennedy political dynasty that dominated Boston for most of the 20th century. Fitzgerald's political career happened quickly. He worked his way up from the Boston Common Council in 1892 to state senate in 1893. In the congressional primary held in September 1894, Fitzgerald beat sitting