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Shutting the Door on the Irish

On Saturday, Dec.11 2021, at 4pm the New York Irish History Roundtable is presenting an on-line discussion of how U.S. policymakers cut immigration possibilities for Irish men and women looking toward America. Why did this happen?

Linda Dowling Almeida will host this discussion using Zoom. Featured in the discussion will be Ray O’Hanlon, author of the new book, Unintended Consequences: The Story of Irish Immigration to the United States and How America’s Door Was Shut to the Irish. Reviews have called O’Hanlon’s book “essential” and “definitive.”

Ray O’Hanlon is also author of The New Irish Americans (1998) which examined the wave of undocumented migrants from Ireland in the 1980s—and which gave an early look at consequences of the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act. O’Hanlon is a senior editor at the Irish Echo who has written books and articles about the people of Ireland and American-Ireland relations for more than three decades.

Linda Dowling Almeida is a member of the faculty of Glucksman Ireland House at New York University. She is the author of Irish Immigration in New York City, 1945–1995 as well as many articles and reviews focusing on the Irish in New York. She has taught Irish American history, literature, and oral history with a focus on immigration and social/cultural life. She is a longtime member of the Roundtable and edits the reviews section of New York Irish History.


If you would like to raise a question about immigration restrictions to be addressed during the session, email it to before Dec. 1. As many questions as possible will be covered.


If you haven’t participated in a Zoom session before, it’s easy. You will need an active Roundtable membership and computer or smart phone with a camera. During the days just before the event you will receive by email a Zoom invitation to join the event. Just follow instructions on the invitation, and you will be led to the session. When you click to join the meeting on Dec. 11 you will be prompted to download and temporarily install Zoom at that time. After exiting the session, nothing will be left on your device.
See you on Dec. 11 at 4pm

Discussion of Seeing-Eye Boy by Terence Winch, 5/1/2021

On Saturday, May 1, 2021, at 4pm the New York Irish History Roundtable is presenting a first-time event. Using the internet and Zoom, the Roundtable will host a discussion of Terence Winch’s recent coming-of-age novel, Seeing-Eye Boy. Through Zoom, participants at home can listen to and join discussion with the author and other Roundtable members.… Continue Reading

Mass in Irish Language

The New York Irish History Roundtable is co-sponsoring a Mass in the Irish language on Saturday, March 14, 2020. It is open to all and will begin at 12 noon. The Mass will be held in the Basilica of St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral, which is at the corner of Mulberry and Prince Streets in Manhattan.… Continue Reading

Steven Butler Presentation

On Wednesday, March 18, Steven Butler will participate in a program on Oscar Wilde at Quinnipiac University. He is associate editor of the Roundtable’s annual journal and will speak on “Speranza’s Son: Irish America Dismisses Oscar.” The afternoon and evening program begins at 12:30 and is associated with the launch of a 15-month long exhibition… Continue Reading

The Unstoppable Irish

On Saturday, Nov. 9, author and singer Dan Milner will join us for an entertaining and unique presentation focusing on the integration of Irish people into the mainstream of New York City life during the hundred years following 1783—and on how the songs and music of Irish New Yorkers reveal that historical progress. Joining this… Continue Reading

Irish Women Of Action

On Saturday, April 13, the New York Irish History Roundtable will present a unique program on “Irish Women of Action,” associated with New York, who devoted much of their lives to major social changes like Irish independence, relief for the impoverished, and achievement of women’s rights. This special panel brings together experts on the topic,… Continue Reading

A Special Visit To Mc Sorley’s

On Saturday October 27th at 10 a.m. New York historian, author and Educator, Geoffrey Cobb will talk about the long and colorful history of this New York landmark and institution. Mr. Cobb recently wrote about the history of this special “Ale House” in Canada’s History. His article discussed the McSorley family history, the pub’s admission… Continue Reading

Rebel Rossa

On Saturday, Dec.1 at 2 p.m., film maker Williams Cole, great-grandson of O’Donovan Rossa, will present a revealing program and film-showing on the life and times of the 19th-century Irish patriot, and New Yorker. Williams Cole, accomplished documentary producer and director, will introduce and discuss his documentary, Rebel Rossa. A reception will follow. Join us… Continue Reading

Water And Ice: The Irish Victims

On Saturday, March 3 at 2 p.m., historian Art Mattson will tell the story of terrible shipwrecks in the 1830s that resulted in the deaths of over 200 immigrants just outside the port of New York. Most victims were Irish, many of them women and children drawn to the freedoms and expanding opportunities in America. They… Continue Reading

A Girl From Queens

On Saturday, May 12 at 2 p.m., author Eileen Markey will discuss the life—and death—of Sister Maura Clarke, M.M., whose brutal assault and murder at the hands of Salvadorian soldiers in 1980 became the source of international news and years of debate over America’s Cold War policy in Latin America. Who was Maura Clarke, and… Continue Reading

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