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Westmeath Men’s Association Elects Officers for 1933

James Weston, Streamstown, The New President

More than five hundred guests and friends of the Westmeath Men’s Association were present at the installation of officers for the coming year, at their meeting rooms, Central Opera House, 67th Streets and 3rd Avenue, on Friday evening, January 6th.

The ceremony which was of a very solemn character, was conducted by Mr. George Murray, Secretary of the United Irish Counties Association, and a native of County Armagh.

The outgoing president, John Kelly, who had refused a fifth renomination because of the number of other members who, he says are eligible for the position, introduced the installing officer. The latter dwelt at great length on the duties of the officers and said it was a very great privilege to have conferred upon him, the honour of installing such a worthy set of officers as the Westmeath Men. “I have known of the work of your organization for a number of years,” said Mr. Murray, “in fact, I have actually witnessed many of your benefactions and the Westmeath Men should be mighty proud to have such an organization behind it.”

After the installation the newly elected president, James Weston, arose amidst the wildest applause, said that his first duty as president was to thank all the members present for the very great honour they had conferred upon him in electing him president of the Westmeath Men’s Association, an honour that any man might feel proud of, to preside over such a gallant, honest, intelligent body of men as the Westmeath Men represented.

And he fully realized the seriousness or the undertaking and the fortitude and endurance that its performance will demand. He would, nevertheless, do all in his power to prove to the Westmeath Men that the honour they had bestowed on him will not be misplaced and that it will be his greatest ambition to emulate as near as possible and to take advantage of every opportunity that will redound to the good and welfare of the Westmeath Men’s Association.

The following are the Officers elected for 1933:–James J. Weston, Streamstown, president; Michael Carolan, Ballynacargy, vice-president; James McAllister, Mullingar, financial secretary; Andrew Coyne, Coralstown, corresponding secretary; Patrick Kelly, Ballynacargy, recording secretary; John McCormack, Sonna, treasurer; Frank Shanley, Clonlost, master-at-arms.

Trustees:– Dr. Joseph P. Brennan, Cloneyheigne; Michael McCormack, Sonna; Frank Tighe, Multyfarnham; Patrick Macken, Castlepollard; and Bernard J. Troy, Ballynacargy.

— Christopher Murray

Christopher J. Murray and colleagues

John McCormack Receiving Delegation From United Irish Counties Association

(Left to right)– John C. O’Connor, Publisher of the Advocate; William Honan (Dublin), Christopher Murray (Westmeath); John McCormack; Matthew Troy, President of the United Irish Counties Association; Dr. Joseph P. Brennan; John J. Hanley (Sligo).

Through the courtesy of Denis F. McSweeney, John McCormack ‘s manager, a committee from the United Irish Counties Association was received by Mr. McCormack at the Academy of Music Sunday night. The occasion for the interview was to invite him to the Irish Ball at the Commodore Hotel, Friday evening, February 24.

The popular tenor received the committee in a most genial manner and assured them that he would be delighted to be present if his tour permitted. Immediately after the concert Mr. McCormack stood for a photograph with the members of the committee notwithstanding the fact that he had just given one of the most brilliant concerts of his whole career before an audience that crowded the Academy of Music from pit to dome. Mr. McCormack packs everything he has got into every song he sings and the numerous encores that followed his group fatigued him somewhat, but he smilingly posed for the picture given above at the solicitation of the cameraman.

Westmeath Men's Ball 1932

Ball of Westmeath Men’s Association in New York – Most Successful in a Decade

Fine Response of Members and Friends of All The Irish County Society
Special Report for Examiner
The Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association has given the Irish social life of New York interesting topic for some time to come after one of the most brilliant affairs the organization has ever had which took place on Saturday evening, November 26.

Yorkville Casino, in the memory of New Yorkers as the home of large and important functions, for the first time in years a crowd was taxed its fullest capacity.

The Westmeath Men’s Association is noted for its splendid social events which largely accounted for the number of visitors from almost every county in Ireland, and every Irish society in New York sent delegates in large numbers to participate in the festivities. It was a typically fine gathering of Ireland’s bravest sons and daughters. There was nothing left undone by the committee to make the arrangements a complete success. They expected a large crowd and subsequently had prepared for it and as soon as the guests began to arrive they were taken in hand by the ushers committee and were courteously conducted to their respective places in the boxes or on the dancer floor.

Perhaps the first thing that attracted the visitors in the main hall were the lavish decorations. There is where the artist’s hand had showed itself. Every colour that the rainbow sets forth was neatly blended and fasted in attractive centre pieces. Flags and banners hung in rest folds from all the boxes, beautifully intermingled with the colour’s and bunting of Ireland and America. On the stage immediately back of the orchestra, trees and plants of evergreens gave an added picturesqueness that made the whole look like veritable “fairyland.” It was a scene well calculated to inspire unity and patriotism in the heart of all those present and certainly one around which many tender recollections will evoke in days to come.

While the dance programme was wholly the composition of Irish masters, the Grand March left off with the soul-stirring composition of Westmeath’s own beloved poet, Leo Casey and “The Rising of the Moon.” The march was led by Christopher Keegan (Derrymore), his partner was Miss Annie Moran (Moate). Miss Moran was gracefully gown in pink satin with silver trimmings. Patrick Quinn (Thomastown) and Miss McCarthy (Mullingar) were second in line, then followed the Officers of the Association and over five hundred couples. The march was under the direction of Joseph Horan (Rahugh). At the conclusion of the march the eight leading ladies were presented with bouquets of American Beauty Roses by eight charming little flower girls ranging in age from from six to eight years old and as a fitting climax the orchestra played the “The Spangled Banned” and the the “Soldiers Song,” while all stood at attention.

The guests in the boxes show their appreciation in prolonged and loud applause. In the splendid gathering witnesses could easily seek young men and women from every village and town in Westmeath. The handsome toilettes of the ladies setting off their radiant countenances and the exhibition of colour was the base of a scene which will not easily be forgotten. This and the scenes of old acquaintances being renewed, the ring of healthy laughter throughout and the spirit of genuine hospitality could inspire the most stolid heart and fill it to an indulgence in the festivities displayed before it. Many, if not all, who tripped the light fantastic, saw in their vision the picture of their deal old home across the sea.

In the great assemblage there were many notable friends of the Association present.

Rev. Father Michael James Fox (Castletown-Geoghegan), and Buenos Aires, and Rev. John K. Flanagan, O.C.C. (Moate), Assistant at Caremelite Church, East 29th Street, New york, were guests of Mr. John Kelly, President of the Westmeath Men.

Hon. Matthew J. Troy (Ballynacargy, Assistant Corporation Counsel and President of the United Irish Counties Association, was host to score or more City and State Officials.

Counsellor Joseph P. Brennan, assisting his father, Dr. Joseph P. Brennan (Cloneyheigne) was entertaining a number of the medical profession. Likewise, Dr. Joseph E and Mr. Gavan (Rahugh) and their charming nieces

In Christopher Murray’s box were members of the Press including John C. O’Connor, Editor “Irish Advocate,” Charles Connolly, Editor “Irish Echo,” John Keane of the “Irish World,” Christopher Gaskin of the “Gaelic American,” and reporters of the New York American” and “Times.” In the box occupied by William McGann (Monte) were members of the State Transit Commission.

[ Hundreds of names ]

In addition the ladies of the reception committee co-operated in a whole-hearted manner. This Committee included: Mollie McCormack, Monroe,  Sonna; Molly Byrne, Lakenstown; Catherine and Anna Weston, Streamstown; Annie Coroon, Curraghmore; Mary Duffy, Sonna; Rita Ledwith and Lillie Boland, Rosemount.

Others of the “old guard” lent their assistance. Men like Frank Tighe, Multyfarnham; Dr. Joseph P. Brennan, Cloneyheige; Michael McCormack, Monroe; William Dunne, Derrymore; John Boylan, Rathwire; Peter Molloy, Killare, and James Weston, Streamstown.

— Christopher J. Murray


Westmeath Exiles

The following is taken from a recent issue of the “New York Advocate” :—

The Westmeath Men’s Association ball at the Yorkville Casino was another splendid event and there was a capacity attendance. The reception committee showed their full value as hosts. In the boxes above the ballroom floor there were many enjoyable parties. It was no easy matter to get away. Chris Murray, John Kelly, Dr. Brennan and several other Westmeath notables treated up in royal fashion. The Westmeath Men’s ball was always a brilliant success.


Westmeath Men’s Association Ball

The Westmeath Men’s Association ball at the Yorkville Casino was another splendid event, and there was a capacity attendance. The reception committee showed their full value as hosts. In the boxes above the ballroom floor there were many enjoyable parties. It was no easy matter to get away. Chris Murray, John Kelly, Dr. Brennan and several other Westmeath notables treated us in royal fashion. The Westmeath Men’s ball was always a brilliant success.


Selected As Ireland’s Fairest

The pick of Ireland’s fairest women were chosen for the grand march at the ball of the United Irish Counties Association, held recently in the St. George Hotel. Photo shows: left to right, the Misses Margaret Murray, Kay Stapleton, Mary Lydon, Mrs. Vincent Maher, and the Misses Gertrude Stapleton, Agnes Murray and Mary Mulcahy.

Agnes Murray and Margaret Murray



O’Brien, Donovan Hailed at Festival Of Irish Counties

The Democratic candidate for Mayor and the Republican candidate for Governor, both Irish, received different receptions last night at the ball of the United Irish Counties Association at the Hotel St. George, the first held in Brooklyn.

Surrogate John P. O’Brien got only applause as the gathering of more than 3,500 interrupted its dancing to hear his brief address. But “Wild Bill” Donovan beloved colonel of the “Fighting Irish,” got boos mixed with the cheers that greeted him when he spoke to the audience after Surrogate O’Brien has left the ball. Boos that were not given for his raciality but for his politics.

Neither candidate spoke long and neither bought a political issue into the gathering of the Irish. But there were Irish there who put the judge right on a bit of geography.

“He said ‘people of Tipperary and Limerick,” they said, “he forgot those of Belfast and Dublin.”

The old timers hadn’t forgotten. There was Thomas Kelly, former deputy sheriff, who led the first grand march 28 years ago in Madison Square Garden, and there was Michael Barrett, the second president of the association.

All represented

“There may be a division in Ireland,” they declared, proudly, “but there is no division here and hasn’t been since the organization was born on 1st Ave, Manhattan, All 32 counties are represented.”

To prove they were Americans they sang “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and then to prove they were Irishmen they sang the “Soldiers Song,” while the golden harp of Ireland shimmered on the wall against a green background and the lights in the ballroom shown green.

Kelly led the grand march last night and with him was his niece, Miss Catherine Burns. Behind him walked Mr. and Mrs. Christopher J. Murray. And the tune they marched to was “O’Donnell Abu.”

Ruth Pratt Present

Representative Ruth Pratt was present, as it was said, she always is, but she did not speak to the audience. On the other side of the political fence John F. Curry, leader of Tammany Hall, also had a box, but was not present during the evening.

Among the guests were:

  • W. J. Macauley, Consul General to President Wilson.
  • Dr. and Mrs. Joseph P. Brennan
  • Mr. and Mrs. Gerald Griffin.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Martin J. Lydon.
  • Michael J. Donovan.


The officers of the association are:

  • Matthew J. Troy, Assistant Corporation Counsel
  • W.J. Honan, first vice president
  • P.J. Sisk, second vice president
  • J.J. Hanley, treasurer
  • J. Brennan, financial secretary
  • M. Flannery, recording secretary
  • G. Murray, corresponding secretary
  • John MacPoland, chairman reception
planning irish ball

Planning Irish Ball

Seven veterans of the first Irish Ball, held in old Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, in 1904, are shown with the new president of the United Irish Counties Association, whom they are aiding with plans to make the ball of the group in the Hotel St. George Friday a brilliant success.

Seated (left to right) are Luke J. Flynn, first president of the organization; Matthew F. Troy, incumbent, and Michael F. Barrett, who succeeded Mr. Flynn.

Standing (same order) are Dr. Luke P. Brennan, James Boylan, first treasurer; Christopher J. Murray, John D. Fitzgerald and Thomas Kelly, who led the grand march at the first Irish ball.


United Irish Counties Association to Honor Brooklyn

Christopher J. Murray, William Honan, Matthew J. Troy, Dick O'BRien

Will Hold Their First Irish Ball in That Borough at the St. George Hotel November 4.

Twenty-eight years ago, Thomas Kelly, former Deputy Sheriff of New York, and County President of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, stepped into the center of old Madison Square Garden, amid the deafening cheers of fifteen thousands people as bands blared forth “Let Erin Remember the Days of Old.” The first grand march of the first Irish Counties Ball was on, and “Tom,” as he is affectionately known among his friends, proudly marched at its head. Next in line was the then president of the United Irish Counties, Luke J. Finn, and it was estimated that more than twenty-five hundred couples participate in the march.

The selection of a leader for the grand march of the Irish Counties is Ireland’s tribute to its most popular son, and at a large and enthusiastic meeting in the St. George Hotel, Brooklyn last Thursday evening a tribute of equal importance was again bestowed upon Mr. Kelly, the members rising in enthusiastic acclamation when his named was mentioned to again participate in the grand march of the first Irish Counties Ball to be held in Brooklyn.

Through all the years Mr. Kelly has lost none of his popularity and thousands of his countrymen will be delighted to see him once more in this, the premier social event among the Irish race in America.

Following Mr. Kelly, will be the officers of the association, Hon. Matthew J. Troy, president; William J. Honan, vice-president; Patrick J. Sisk, second vice-president; John J. Hanley, treasurer.

Other officers, Joseph Brennan, Michael Flannery, George J. Murray, Patrick Heaney, John O’Connor, Richard J. Stack, Patrick J. Grimes, J. Ryan, Patrick J. McGee, Joseph M. Donovan, John O’Donnell, Charles J. Gaskin, John —-, Frances Dunn, Joseph Townley.

Others on the committee, John F. Maher, chairman; Richard O’Brien, Andrew J. Trimble, Christopher Murray, Bernard J. Troy, Gerald Maloney, Thomas Rogers, William Prior, Michael Barrett, John Mc——, William Burke.

Ladies’ Auxiliary: Mrs. P.J. Clifford, chairlady; Delia Kelly, secretary; Helen A. Maher, Kathleen Kearney, Mrs. Joseph Cunningham, Margaret Mulcahy, Helen McAvoy, M—- Russell, Nora Lyn. AT the next meeting, which will be held at the 8th George Hotel, on Thursday evening, October 20, the various committees of the ladies’ auxiliary will be appointed under the supervision of Mrs. Clifford.

corinthian cinema dublin

Irishman in Film in Dublin

Mr. Christopher J. Murray, former Commissioner of Weights and Measures for New York, watched in the Corinthian Cinema, Dublin, the performance of his son, James Murray, in “The Reckoning.” Mr. Murray, who is a native of Raharney, Co. Westmeath, began his business career in Dublin and later went to the United States. He returned to Ireland for the Eucharistic Congress. Mr. J. Murray abandoned a stage career for the films, making his first “hit” in “The Crowd.”


Father Sees Son On Screen

Proud Parent in Dublin Cinema

Last night Mr. Christopher J. Murray, former Commissioner of Weights and Measures for the City of New York, sat in the Corinthian Cinema, Dublin, and watched the performance of his son, James Murray, one of the principals in “The Reckoning.”

Mr. Murray, who is a native of Raharney, Co. Westmeath, began his business career in Dublin, and later went to the United States. He returned to Ireland for the Eucharistic Congress and is still residing here.

He is rightly proud of his son, James, who is in the front rank of the younger actors in motion pictures. Murray abandoned a stage career for the films, making his first great hit by his work in “The Crowd,” directed by King Videor. “Hide Out” is his third picture for Universal, his first being “The Shakedown,” with Barbara Kent, and his second being “Shanghai Lady,” in which Mary Nolan was starred. He was previously seen in Dublin in “Line of Duty,” with Noah Beary and Sue Carroll.

St. Brigid's Holy Water Fountain - Raharney Westmeath

Holy Water Fountain Donation to St. Brigid’s in Raharney

The above holy water fountain was likely donated by Christopher J. Murray to St. Brigid’s Church in Raharney between 1930 and 1932 because Patrick, Thomas, Matthew, and Michael had all passed away by 1930, as had his first wife Mary and also his parents. Christopher J. Murray was in Ireland for an extended 2.5 month stay in 1932 and was known to be traveling at the very least, to Mullingar and Dublin. It is likely he paid a visit to Raharney during this time.

The only unresolved mystery is that his brother James Murray is also believed to have passed in 1930 and yet his name does not appear on the engraving.


Westmeath Men’s Excursion to Ireland

The Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association has reason to feel proud of the excursion sponsored by them to the Eucharistic Congress. More than five hundred tourists have availed themselves of the facilities that the committee has placed before them, and of this number several are from neighboring counties.

Bernard J. Troy, brother of Corporation Counsellor Matthew J. Troy, was chairman, and succeeded in making arrangements a complete success.

The first contingent left a few weeks ago on the Laconia, on which were Christopher Coroon, treasurer of the Westmeath Football Club; his two sisters, Miss Annie Coroon, Mrs. Grimes and her family and Miss Massie Coroon.

On the New York of the Hamburg American Line, which sailed June 9, were Christopher J. Murray, Mr. and Mrs. Michael McKenna and many others.

Among those sailing on the Adriatic on June 11, accompanied by Mr. Troy, are: Father William Donlon, Father Hayes, Miss Maureen Troy, Miss Kathleen McDonnell, Miss Annie Connolly, Daniel White, Patrick Bannon, Miss Ellen O’Connor, Miss Elizabeth O’Connor, Anthony Horan, Hugh Laragy, Miss Rose Donlon, Miss Statia Barron, Miss Mary and Master Edward Troy, Mrs. Ellen Rooke, Miss Attie Walsh, Miss Mary Delaney, Mr. and Miss Mary Sheehy, Miss E. Peterson, Bernard Murray, Mrs. Catherine dishing, Miss M. V. Cushing, Mrs. Ellen Cullnane, James Donlon, Miss Annie Phelan, Miss Nora Foley, Miss E. Lane, Mrs. Elizabeth McDermot, Edward McDermot, Miss Margaret Shevlin, Timothy O’Connell, Thomas Fitzgerald, James Begley, James Byrnes, John Lynch, Miss Bridget Maddix, Miss Elena Dennehy, Patrick Carroll, Testus I Conroy, Patrick and Mrs. Nellie Ambrose, Mr. and Mrs. Philip Coyle, Miss Josephine Ryan, Miss Mary Kelly, Mrs. Ellen Hogan, Mrs. Catherine McKenzie and son Thomas, John Henry, Jeremiah Donohue, Patrick Jones, Michael Shea, Timothy Carroll and others.

An important feature of this excursion will be the meeting of the returning exiles in one of the prominent hotels in Mullingar before their return to the States.


Christopher J Murray Sets Sail For Ireland

Christopher J. Murray set sail for Ireland on June 9, 1932 on the New York of the Hamburg American Line for the primary purpose of attending the Eucharistic Congress and a Westmeath reunion in Mullingar that had been planned by the Westmeath Men’s Association. However, he spent an extended time there.

After arriving there, he stayed in Ireland for almost 2 and a half months. During that time he appeared in some local newspapers. He departed Ireland from Cobh, County Cork on August 27, 1932 aboard the SS Albert Ballin and arrived back in New York on Sept 2, 1932.


The Colclough Family

Metropolitan Life Insurance Company

412 East 202nd Street,

New York City, May 2, 1932


To the Editor, “Westmeath Examiner.”

Dear Sir,– On page seven of your issue of April 10th, a letter appears therein from Max Kisdf, Hamburg, Germany, inquiring about a family named Colclough.

If you are further interested and if you have not received any communication from other sources, may I suggest that you write to Michael Coakley or Colclough, Bellevue, Raharney. I am quite sure that the family whom your correspondent seeks is the aforementioned.

Very truly yours,

Christopher J Murray


Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association of New York City – Its Origin, Its Objects, And Its Duties

Everyone in this world has a cross of some kind to bear. It may be one lying unseen in the silence of the heart’s most profound depths, or it may be one that is painfully visible to all. To some, God gives but one cross to bear; upon others he showers what seems like a multitude of smaller ones. It was a similar cross that came to a Westmeath Man forty odd years ago that was responsible for the organizing of the Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association.

This man, whose name we shall not mention, was very prominent in business and was considered in fairly good circumstance. Conditions changed however, he met with business reverses. In addition to this, sickness entered his home and one by one carried his little family to eternal rest in Calvary Cemetery. Finally, discouraged and heartbroken, he gave up the fight and he, himself, in a very short while joined the other members of his family in death.

It was then discovered that all his financial resources were expended in a brave but futile attempt to save the lives of the members of his family. Rather than see the remains of this heroic father interred in a public burial ground forever unnamed, a number of his friends and acquaintances subscribed enough money to cover expenses of placing his remains with those of the other members of his family in Calvary Cemetery.

The few men who took part in the noble work wished soon afterwards to form a society for the purpose of aiding the sick and in general to do and perform all such care-taking as might be necessary for the relief and advancement of its members. To continue this laudable undertaking it was found necessary to seek members from among their own acquaintances, and in a short time results seemed to manifest themselves so thoroughly that the membership increased beyond the fondest hopes of the organizers. In the meantime contributions to the — of a fund continued and enough was now in hand for all needs. Followed by the remarkable success of their venture they decided to incorporate under the law of the State of New York. Consequently an application for incorporation was forwarded to the Secretary of State in Albany, and on July 16, 1892, Abraham R. Lawrence, then a Justice of the Supreme Court, issued a certificate of incorporation to the “Westmeath Men’s Society and Benevolent Association of New York.” The announced objects as set forth in the certificate of incorporation, are as follows:

  • The intellectual and social improvement of its members
  • The cultivation and encouragement of mutual friendship and good will
  • To aid and assist members in sickness and distress
  • To provide burial for deceased members when no ability exists
  • To encourage all persons, native or descendants of natives of the County Westmeath in union, as representatives of our fatherland and also to assist at all times possible each other’s welfare, in this, our adopted country
  • To promote a spirit of brotherly love and sociability among its members and help to encourage a spark of true friendship and benevolence towards one another

The first President was James Quest, a native of Killucan;

Thomas Murtagh, Secretary

Maurice Fay, Multy, Treasurer

Other charter members were Lawrence McGrath, James O’Neill, Michael Godfrey, William Crosby, James Keenan, Frank Tighe, Edward and James Cahill, Patrick J. Coughlan, John J. Cunningham.

The praiseworthy provenance of the founders has been signally fulfilled in the practical workings of the association. Its benevolence and sympathy have been particularly extended to assist ever undertaking for the welfare of its members. While performing these duties, perhaps the grandest opportunity was yet to come. Our people as a race, at that time had no unified method of recreation. Irish societies were few and far between in the City of New York and our own Westmeath people had to look for diversion elsewhere.

In order to give them that social intercourse for which they craved the organization planned to bring them unlimited joy and happiness. Excursions were then very much in vogue and once or twice each year the Westmeath Men chartered pleasure boats and the sail up the sound with the gay laughter of hundreds of men, women, and children laughing with the — drum band and the younger element tripping the light fantastic to the rollicking music of a ten piece orchestra are epics in the Association that can never be forgotten by those who participated.

Later years came more modern methods of entertainment and the organization developed along the lines of serial activities and the various functions held under the auspices of the Association have come to be established social features of the social life in the Metropolis. The high standard of excellence which has characterized the many social affairs has been consistently maintained and it brings together our boys and girls, men and women from every village, hamlet, and town in Westmeath. If it was organized for no other purpose than this, it would repay the promoters a thousandfold but let us see what a very prominent official of the City of New York has to say about our organization.

“It is due to the organization in a large — we that—  many of have met, to our —-, which after all is one of the pleasures of this life to meet and greet your fellow man. Especially is the affection all the more real when you know that he is from your own home, from your own county, from your own fireside.

I feel that there is no man here that will not be coveted by his association with the Westmeath Men. The past history of your association speaks for itself. During the many years of your existence you have done nobly.

When the shadow of death came within your parish you have gone into the homes of the widows and orphans and with kind, counseling words you have eased the pain that the pangs of death and suffered had left in its trail; your weekly cheque has helped to pay the doctor’s bill, the butcher and the grocer. Your sick committee has always an encouraging word for those in ——– on account of illness, where in the hospital or in the home.

On each recurring Thanksgiving Day you have Mass, offered for the repose of the souls of your deceased members you gather in large numbers to assist in the Holy Sacrifice.

You have erected a monument in Calvary Cemetery where those of your needy members may find a last resting place, so that they may be always remembered by you. If it had not been for your keen observation many of your countrymen would have been buried in a nameless grave in a public field, among the outcasts of a large City like New York.”

Extract from an address delivered at the the —- of officers by Hon. Thomas Kelly, Deputy Sheriff, City of New York.

The outstanding principles that have — the promoters and which have — the officers to instill into the hearts of his members the love of motherland have withstood all during its long and creditable career. The history of their County could be one of the most interesting. To many it does with the most unsullied praise of their ancestors in the most trying circumstances of their devotion to God and country, their love for justice and right and their fidelity to the principle should give her people immeasurable cause for being proud of their race and of the grandeur and nobility of their character.

We feel that the heart of every Irishman who loves his country or wishes for the success of those of his neighbors should be deeply impressed by the necessity for peace and more concentrated unified efforts of our people because by this alone we can take advantage of the grandest opportunity to do something special and beneficial alike to ourselves and our race.

The Association has made splendid progress in membership, financial resources and — until to-day it occupies a special place in the domain of Irish organizations in America. That it has been of the greatest benefit to our members is testified by the thousands of dollars paid in sick and help benefits in addition to the hundreds of dollars it has paid to the bedside of sick —-.

The financial obligations of the members are being compared with the generous benefit derived. The work of the officers and members of the various committees is voluntary and not a cent is expended for salary of any kind whatsoever.

The — then, shall be our justification for preserving for the first time this brief history of the Westmeath Men’s Association of New York City, showing our people at home the activities of friends and kin in another land.

The officers who have recently elected to carry on the work for 1932, are as follows:

  • John Kelly, Terrycrew, re-elected as President
  • Bernard J. Troy, Ballynacargy, Vice-President
  • Andrew Coyne, Hightown, Secretary
  • John Flanagan, Moate, Recording Secretary
  • Christopher J. Casserly, Killucan, Financial Secretary
  • John McCormack, Sonna, Treasurer

Board of Trustees:

  • Dr. Joseph P. Brennan, Cloney
  • Michael McCormack, Sonna
  • James W—-, Streamstown
  • Frank Tighe, Mullingar
  • Patrick Macken, Castlepollard

Seargeant-at-arms, Frank Shanley, Clonlost




Westmeath Excursion to Ireland in June

The excursion to the Eucharistic Congress in Dublin next June, sponsored by the Westmeath Men’s Association, will be of interest to a great many tourists from the midlands.

The committee has made arrangements to visit many of the shrines throughout the country. From Royal Meath also comes an invitation to the High Mass on the Hill of Slane in commemoration of the first Paschal fire in the year 432. “As this,” says the invitation, “is the 1500 anniversary of St. Patrick’s lighting that fire, we intend to have appropriate ceremonies, and a section will be reserved for the Westmeath excursionists.”

From the Hill of Tara comes another invitation. William Martin of Kilmessan, to whom we are indebted for this invitation, is making complete arrangements to have every spot of history interest thoroughly explained.

There is no man in Westmeath who knows her beautiful lakes better or is more proud of them than David Callaghan. Mr. Callaghan is one of the pioneers of auto service in Mullingar and he has assured the committee that, come what may, the returning exiles will have the best service at his disposal. This is important because of the number of lakes that dot the midlands, and Mr. Callaghan is determined that we shall bring back a mental picture of the scenic beauty that adorns the various lakes throughout the county.

On this itinerary are visits to the far-famed Hill of Uisneach, Goldsmith’s “Deserted Village,” the “Three Jolly Pigeons” and Auburn. It may be stated that it is optional with the tourist to make any, all or none of these visits.

Before returning to the United States a big reunion and dinner will be held on a convenient date in one of the well-known hotels in Mullingar.

Get in touch with Bernard J. Troy, 617 81st street, Brooklyn, who is in charge of arrangements; phone him, Sunset 6-2007, for your appointment. He will advise you on re-entry permits and passports.

— The Committee

Matthew J. Troy, President of the United Irish Counties Association

American Irish Counties Association New President

Native of Ballynacargy

( Special to “Examiner” )

Of the many honors that have come to Assistant Corporation Counsel, Matthew J. Troy, none has caused greater satisfaction or appreciation among his friends than that recently conferred upon him by his election to the presidency of the United Irish Counties Association. It is doubtful, indeed, if a great tribute could be paid to an Irishman in the City of New York, by his fellow-countrymen than that he be the unanimous choice of representatives from almost every county in Ireland to be the executive head of an organization, the delegates of which represents a membership of over 15,000.

The choice of Mr. Troy, however was a master stroke. He has all the attributes of a great leader and on more than one occasion has demonstrated that he combines organization and executive ability with a necessary degree of caution. His frankness and honest appeal to men mark him as an outstanding figure. His powers of persuasion are unlimited and the knowledge that Mr. Troy has been continually active in civic and social affairs and that he possesses the qualities of leadership and business efficiency that are of paramount importance to the development of plans that are now in formation for the benefit of the Irish people here in New York, convinced the members that he was the most logical man to lead the Counties. The undertaking of these new duties will necessarily impose a great sacrifice on Mr. Troy’s time and energy. However, he is only too willing to respond to the call of his countrymen and to give the work which he will be called upon to perform the best that is in him.

A Word About Mr. Troy

Matthew J. Troy was born in Ballynacargy, Co. Westmeath, where his parents still reside. When he arrived in New York, he did not seem to possess any more superior qualities than thousands of other young Irishmen who have been coming to this country from time immemorial. He did however, have a spirit that was both confident and defiant. He came to conquer not to retreat. He sized up the Metropolis at the start–New York is the greatest leveller in the world–it crushes the weakling and the unworthy but for the resolute, the earnest and able, it opens up its arms with a warmth of welcome that can be experienced in no other city.

To aspire to anything worth while Mr. Troy immediately saw the necessity for continuing his education. He registered at St. Francis Xavier College, and three years later graduated with high honors. He then entered Fordham University where pursued his studies until he entered the United States Army at the time of the World War. In 1919 he returned from military service and entered Fordham University Law School where he applied himself most diligently, receiving his degree in 1921. In January, 1922, he had the distinction of being the youngest delegate to the Irish Race Convention in Paris. He remained in Ireland until October, 1922. Upon his return to the United States he became a member of the legal staff of the Brooklyn, Manhattan, Transit Corporation. Here he so distinguished himself that his fame became nationwide and his eminence in the legal profession was becoming a matter of history. The success of this young lawyer that is in his early thirties, came to the attention of Mayor James Walker, who sent for him and appointed him to the office of Assistant Corporation Counsel. He was assigned to the difficult task of Trial Counsel and Admiralty Lawyer for the City and now is in full and complete charge of the Contract Department. This is one of the most important and responsible departments in the City, having to do with the vetting of contracts which involves the expenditure of millions of dollars and so ably is this department being administered under the supervision of Mr. Troy, that not one of his decisions has even been reversed.

Not only is Mr. Troy one of Mayor Walker’s consultants but a close friend as well. When the Mayor decided to go to Ireland in September, 1927, he felt his entourage would be incomplete without Mr. Troy. The latter adjusted his affairs and accompanied his honor to the Emerald Isle.

Mr. Troy is a fluent, forceful and polished orator and is in constant demand at public meetings throughout the city.

Among the nonprofit clubs to which he belongs and which have honored him on various occasions are the Elks, the Democratic Club, the American Legion, Fordham University Club, Mulry Club, St. Patrick’s Society, Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association, etc.

Although tremendously busy with his legal work and a multitude of activities he always finds time to continue his post graduate studies and has received additional Degrees in recent years from both St. John’s College of Law and Fordham University.

He was unanimously elected chairman of the great Irish ball of 1932, which went down in history as the great social affair ever held by the Irish people in America, there being over five thousand persons present at the Commodore Hotel, the success of which was entirely due to his splendid organizing qualities.

Mr. Troy is a man among men, likable and lovable. He has a warm hand for his numerous friends and acquaintances and it is not at all surprising that he draws men closer to him by a tie that is unbreakable.

His friends predict for him a very brilliant future. Indeed, there is no disguising the fact that the signs are very optimistic that some day the Mayor’s Chair, in City Hall, may be occupied by a born Irishman–and that Irishman will be Matthew J. Troy (– Christopher J. Murray.)

The following account of the installation of officers is taken from the “New York Advocate” of March 26th:–

The rejuvenated United Irish Counties Association, installed a brand new set of officers in the Blue Room of the McAlpin Hotel last Saturday Night.

Representatives of the 21 Irish county societies attended the installation and the officers selected were drawn from 16 of the affiliated societies.

The new officers are all young men, capable and experienced. The installing ceremony was conducted by John F. Maher of Tipperary. Mr. Maher introduced each officer in turn to the 400-odd representatives and guests present. President Troy made a lengthy and business-like address in which he outlined the objects of the association and the activities that would engage the attention of the members. Mr. Troy is a very able young man and a fine executive; he has the goodwill and cooperation of all the Irish county societies in the program has outlined for the year before him. A United County Ladies Auxiliary will be attached to the main body.

The other officers installed included Mr. Roman of Dublin, Mr. Sisk of Cork, vice-presidents; John J. Hanley of Sligo, treasurer; George Murray, Armagh, financial secretary; Michael Flannery, Tipperary, corresponding secretary; There are also several trustees and auditors which made up the representation of the counties. Quite a number of ladies were present, representing their county societies.

On the whole, it was a very — body who came to see the new — assume office.

The western and midland counties vied with the men of Munster and Ulster in showing their faith and goodwill in the new men at the helm of the United Irish Counties Association.

The Rev. Fathers Cox and McLoughlin, two of our popular Irish sogarths, one from Cork and the other from Galway, came to give the new officers their blessing and a word of encouragement in the good work they had taken over. Roderick J. Kennedy, fresh from his great work in the St. Patrick’s Day parade, came to say a friendly word as a Tipperary man. Dr. Joseph P. Brennan spoke and Charles F. Connolly.

A reception was prepared for the delegates and guests after the installing ceremony.


Westmeath Men’s Association and The Eucharistic Congress

It is easy to understand the continued rush of tourists anxious to book on the excursion sponsored by the Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association to the Eucharistic Congress in Dublin next June.

No doubt they have been inspired by the active part Westmeath has already had in the bringing of the Eucharistic Congress to Ireland. “Mizpah,” in a recent issue of the Westmeath Examiner, has drawn attention to the fact that the town commissioners of Mullingar, were the first public body in Ireland to endorse the resolution presented by the “Messenger,” a Catholic periodical to have the Eucharistic Congress held in Dublin, in 1932. This historic event took place at an ordinary meeting of the commissioners, on March 2, 1927, five years ago.

The “Messenger” pointed out that it would coincide with the commemoration of St. Patrick’s coming to Ireland 15 centuries ago. Copies were sent to his late lordship, the Bishop of Meath, to the editor of the “Messenger” and the press. The fire, so to speak, lit between Uisneach and Tara, in Mullingar, on that memorable occasion, eventually becoming an unquenchable blaze. Practically every public body took it up, in many cases quoting the actual words used by the Mullingar town commissioners.

What better way can we show our appreciation to the town commissioners for their noteworthy foresight in taking the initiative in bringing to Ireland this worldwide event than by descending on Mullingar in large numbers and hold a big reunion of the Westmeath exiles in the chief town of the midlands. This can be done very easily through any member of the Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association or through Bernard J. Troy, 617 61st Street, Brooklyn, who has full charge of the bookings. There are some choice accommodations yet to be had.

–Christopher J. Murray


The Westmeath Men’s Association’s Influence on New York City’s Irish Community Reaches Its Peak Level

On this day, Matthew J. Troy, a member of the Westmeath Men’s Association (from Ballynacargy), was elected president of the United Irish Counties Association, the highest position in the organization. The United Irish Counties Association presides over 32 county associations in New York City. Troy would remain president for 2 years before passing the torch to Paul O’Dwyer (from County Mayo) in 1934. No representative from Westmeath would ever rise to this position in the U.I.C.A. ever again.


Westmeath Association to Celebrate March 17

An important meeting was held in the Central Opera House on Feb. 9 when a committee of seven members from the Westmeath Men’s S. and B. Association, consisting of Joseph P. Horan, Anthony Horan, Frank Shanley, Jean Glennon, Christopher J. Murray, Bernard Troy and Andrew Coyne and the Westmeath Football Club, represented by Michael Carlin, Patrick Shanley, Patrick Quinn, — Keenan, Henry Grattan, Chris —, John —, and —- Broder, met to make arrangements to celebrate St. Patrick’s night, March 17, in the Lexington Hall, 100 East 116 street, between Park and Lexington avenues.

Professor James McGrath’s orchestra has been engaged to supply music for the lovers of the Irish dances. The Lexington Hall will accommodate over 2,000 people and the committee are making arrangements to make this affair the greatest Westmeath dance ever held in New York.


Notes From The Editor

This writer refuses to believe that the United Irish Counties’ Association, in its twenty-eight years of existence, has ever held a more successful ball than that which was held at the Commodore Hotel Friday night. From the moment the doors were opened until the last guest had left the hotel it was finely conducted, splendidly managed and thoroughly enjoyable; the most perfect Irish affair ever attended by this writer—and he has seen some good ones. It will certainly add something to the prestige of the United Irish Counties and to the Irish of New York. During the evening I noticed nearly every well-known Irish man and woman in New York in the ballroom, including Thomas F. Delaney, president of the association, and Mrs. Delaney; Councillor Matthew Troy, chairman of arrangements, and Mrs. Troy; Daniel Murphy president Cork; Richard Stack, president Kerry; William C. Duggan,

Waterford; John McDonnell, Mayo; John Reilly, Cavan; John Kelly, Westmeath; John J. Hanley, Sligo; George Murray, Armagh; Dr. and Mrs. J. P. Brennan, Mr. and Mrs. Michael J. Donovan, Councillor Joseph Donovan and Miss Aloock, Dr. and Mrs. Jas. OTlejnerty, John O. O’Connor, Virginia Sutter, James O’Connor, Michael A. Murphy, Mr. and Mrs, Eugene MeCrohan, Mr. and Mrs. P. J. Clifford. P. J. Sullivan, Patrick Daly, James Guertn, Dan McCarthy, P. J. Curran, Joseph McLoughlin, Brian O’Rourke, J. D. Buckley, Mr. and Mrs. Dave ScanIon, James Boylan, Adrian Boylan, Thomas Heaney, Mrs. Kathleen Mannlx, George Ryan, May Craughan, Martin J. Lydon, Rev. Eugene McLoughlin, Councillor . and Mrs. William O’Dwyer, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Foley, John Aloock, —-, Mr. and Mrs. P. J. Grimes, Thomas Ooneannon, Richard O’Brien, Patrick Mannion, John F. Manor, Helen Maher, Mr. and Mrs. Christopher J. Murray, John J. English, Patrick Lisk, Mr. and Mrs. James Farrell, Mr. and Mrs. Peter Coleman, P. J. Collins, Matt Reilly. Wm. F. Prior, “Cappy” Fitzgerald, Mr. and Mrs. John Keane, Mr. and Mrs. Wedger Meagher, Dolly Sutton, Clarence A. Maher, Mary Kelly, Norah Flaming, Monica Oeritty, Mary Keating, Brendan Dooley, Jack Holllgan, Michael Carolan, Anthony Trimble, Elisabeth Foley, Mary OBrten, Mr. and Mrs. J. Cunningham, Tommy Hill,, Kathleen Mannlx, P. J. Kenneally, John Lovatt, Mrs. K. Gerritty, Margaret Murray, John Foley, Josephine O’Brien, Nellie Mahon, Edward White, P. J. Carroll, John Farrell, Michael Mahon, Nora Lyne, Kathleen Stapleton, Mr. and Mrs. Norman Curran, Dave Llnney, Francis Troy, Mr. and Mrs. Michael Collins, Charles T. Rice, John Sheehan, John Clifford. Hannah Sullivan, Mrs. Nora Sweeney, Elisabeth Foley, Patrick Kenneally, Jerry Cunningham, James J. Duffy, John. Keating, Hugh Kelly, Anita Cleary, W. J. Honan, Barney Conway, P. J. Duffy, Patirck Reynolds, BUI Danenfeld. Charles Anderson, Councillor J, B. McDonough, Owen Traynor, Jaek Murphy, Peter Donoghue, Bernard McDonald and John McCoy.

The grand march was led by Michael J. Donovan and his daughter, LuceUe, foUowed by the officers of the association and guests. At the time of writing I am unable to say with certainty whether it waswatched by 3,000 or 4,000—the attendance should be somewhere between those figures. Paddy KUloran and his Pride of Erin Orchestra supplied excellent music for the/occasion. Many of those present “played host” to friends In reception rooms in tha hotel, adding a further touch of hospitality to the evening. The Galway Hall group of dancers, colorfully clad, drew many admiring glances, and their dancing of a “set” was loudly applauded. Now to hand out the bouquets to those responsible. First of all, credit is duo to Councillor Matthew Troy for the extraordinary energy he put into his work as chairman of the arrangements; this energy was transmitted to his committees, and the result was, a perfect score for the United Irish Counties. Every committee member deserves credit, but I am going to pick Christopher Murray, John J. Hanley, John F. Maher, Riehard O’Brien, Michael A. Murphy. George Murray and Thomas F. Delaney for special mention. If one were to award a medal for courage It would go to James Boylan who, although injured in an automobile aocident, continued to attend the meetings and to work as chairman of the box committee. Michael Donovan gats the medal for good service; his hall and its many facilities being placed at the disposal of the commutes at no cost and at any time. I am sure that all who were present at the 1932 ball of the United Irish Counties will never forget it, and will await with impatience the next affair sponsored by the association.


The Big Irish Ball

The chairman of the Irish Ball Committee is Assistant Corporation Counsel Matthew J. Troy. At the meeting of the committee on Monday night, Mr. Troy had the support of John J. Hanley, president of the Sligo Men; Mr. Dick O’Brien of the Galway Men; James Boylan of the Monaghan Men; Mr. Murray of the Armagh Men; Dr. Joseph P. Brennan and Mr. Chris Murray of Westmeath; Edward White of Waterford; Martin Lydon of Sligo; Dan O’Neill, Pat O’Carroll and John F. Maher of Tipperary; George Murray of Armagh; Michael Murphy of Kerry, Patrick Sisk of Cork, and a score of other delegates, including Mrs. Cunningham, formerly Miss May Murry, president of the Roscommon Ladies, The committee, with the directing hand of their chairman, set the ball rolling and outlined a fine programme for the annual Irish ball at the Commodore Hotel on Jan. 15.


Friends Re-United – “Examiner’s” Wonderful Instrumentality

Mr. Christy Murray (“Raharney Rover”) Writes

To the Editor, “Westmeath Examiner.”

Dear Sir,– In your issue of October 24th, you had a reprint from the Irish American Advocate of New York, relative to a quarterly meeting of the Westmeath Men’s Social and Benevolent Association, at which meeting resolutions of condolence were voted to two of its members on account of recent deaths in their immediate families, one of the members being Mr. Patrick Macken, whose sister passed away.

Mr. Macken has near relatives (Mr. Eugene Smith and family of Ansonia, Connecticut) whom he had never seen.

Mr. Smith is a subscriber to the “Westmeath Examiner,” and on the copy referred to, upon reaching Mr. Smith, he observed notice of the Westmeath Men’s meeting. He satisfied himself, after comparing notes with his father and other members of his family that Mr. Macken was the relative he was so anxious to meet. He thereupon decided to investigate and arranged to attend the Westmeath Men’s Ball. Arriving there with Mrs. Smith he kept his identity secret and was greatly pleased to note the delightful and dignified way with which the hall was conducted. On disclosing his identity however, he was accorded a hearty welcome and one of the members soon had Mr. Macken brought into his presence. The touching scenes that followed the introductions between both were reminiscent of greetings at Cork harbour.

The responsibility for this meeting between these splendid people belongs, therefore, to the “Westmeath Examiner” which really brought it about by its chronicling of the activities of the Westmeath men in America. And the Westmeath Men’s Association desires to express its grateful acknowledgement.

–Christopher Murray

November 25, 1931

Daniel Reeves Stores

Reeves Employees Join in Co-operative Life Insurance

Group life insurance approximating $2,000,000 has been adopted by Daniel Reeves, Inc. for employees of the company’s 750 grocery stores in New York City, Brooklyn, Long Island, Westchester, Connecticut, New Jersey and other outlying sections, with coverage extended as well to the personnel of the main office, and to employees in the warehouses and other branches of the business.

Announcement of the group program was made by James Reeves, president of the concern. The insurance has been underwritten by the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, Christopher J. Murray acting as its representative in the transaction, and is on a co-operative basis, whereby employer and employees share the cost.

Individual amounts of life insurance, graded according to occupation, range from a minimum of $1,000 to a maximum of $10,000. In addition to death benefits established by the life insurance, the contract contains a total and permanent disability provision. Under this any employee becoming permanently disabled before the age of sixty will receive the full amount of his life insurance, with interest, in monthly instalments.

The insurance company maintains a visiting nurse service. The service is available to all insured employees of Daniel Reeves. In conjunction with the visiting nurse service, pamphlets on health conservation and disease prevention are periodically distributed.


Social Rounds By C.P. O’Grady

The Midland Counties Ball at the Lyceum was the next stop. “Spotted” quite a few Midlanders about the place. Mr. and Mrs. Christopher J. Murray led the grand march. Edward Brady, Peg Coffey, Margaret Murray, John Smith, William Healy, Mike Carolan, Delia Shanley, Frank Tighe, Joe Horan, Chris Murtagh, Mr. and Mrs. Gene Kelly, Mary Duffy and May Byrne are a few for the book. Henry Grattan of the Westmeath Football Club is another. He tells me the team will be at Duffy’s Feb. 14th and that all the “boys” will be there on that night again. Oh, yes, Al. Kelly, John Flanagan and Bernard Kelly got no fun out of the dance at all. They were in the box-offices.


Midland Counties Ball This Saturday Night

The United Midland Counties Ball will be the outstanding social event this Saturday evening at the Lyceum, 86th and 3d avenue. It will be specially decorated for the occasion. A representative from each of the five counties interested in this big merger will take a prominent place in the grand march. They are as follows: “Commissioner” Murray, Westmeath; John Smith, Meath; Edward Brady, Cavan; William Healy, Offaly; Mike Carolan, Longford; Several city officials have signified their intentions to be present, also various prominent officers from the Irish county associations. A flashlight will be taken of the whole affair. Professor Keating’s ten-piece orchestra has been secured to take care of the American dancing, while C. Murtagh’s ten-piece Irish orchestra will play for the Irish dancing. Al Kilby is chairman of the arrangements, while J. Brady is doing the secretarial end of the work.

The other active members of the committee are: John Flanagan, D. Stones, E. Glennon, B. Neill, M. Carolan, J. Boyhan, M. Delahaunty, K. Broder, M. Torpey and P. McDermott.