Making Sense of the Molly Maguires

Making Sense of the Molly Maguires

4.07 (65 ratings by Goodreads)
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Twenty Irish immigrants, suspected of comprising a secret terrorist organization called the Molly Maguires, were executed in Pennsylvania in the 1870s for the murder of sixteen men. Ever since, there has been enormous disagreement over who the Molly Maguires were, what they did, and why they did it, as virtually everything we now know about the Molly Maguires is based on hostile descriptions of their contemporaries. Arguing that such sources are inadequate to serve as the basis for a factual narrative, Making Sense of the Molly Maguires examines the ideology behind the contemporary evidence to explain how and why a particular meaning came to be associated with the Molly Maguires in Ireland and Pennsylvania. At the same time, this book examines new archival evidence from Ireland that establishes that the American Molly Maguires were a rare transatlantic strand of the violent protest endemic in the Irish countryside. Combining social and cultural history, Making Sense of the Molly Maguires offers a new explanation of who the Molly Maguires were, as well as why people wrote and believed such curious things about them.
In the process, it vividly retells one of the classic stories of American labour and immigration.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 348 pages
  • 162.6 x 237.7 x 28.7mm | 780.19g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • New
  • 20 halftone figures, 3 maps
  • 0195106644
  • 9780195106640

About Kevin Kenny

Kevin Kenny is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin.
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Review quote

Few have ever heard of the Pennsylvanian Molly Maguires. Kevin Kelly certainly makes sense of them in a generously subsidised book which is meticulously researched and referenced, includes enough statistics to support his arguments, and is packed with fascinating details. * Charles Chenevix Trench, Irish Independent (Dublin) * Professor Kenny's scholarly work is a valuable addition to the literature on the Molly Maguires and an aid to understanding this tragic episode in the history of Irish-Ammerican immigrant labour. * Seanchas Ard Mhacha: Journal of the Armagh Diocesan Historical Society *
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Rating details

65 ratings
4.07 out of 5 stars
5 38% (25)
4 35% (23)
3 22% (14)
2 5% (3)
1 0% (0)
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