Palgrave Macmillan Trade
Eamon de Valera is one of the most famous characters in Irish history. He commanded troops during the famous 1916 Easter Rising, co-authored the present-day Irish constitution, and in 1926, he founded Fianna Fáil, which continues to be the largest political party in Ireland today. In June 1919, he arrived at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel pronouncing himself the "President of Ireland." He was on a mission to convince the United States to recognize Ireland as an independent nation, and also to fund the independence movement, which would be a clear affront to Britain. De Valera went on to give speeches in some of America's largest venues, including Madison Square Garden and Fenway Park, where he drew crowds of 60,000 people. Over the course of that year, he accumulated fame and scandal, but more importantly, he gained essential financial support for the fledgling Irish Republic.
Here, for the first time, award-winning journalist Dave Hannigan follows de Valera on his controversial trip across America, exploring his questionable personal and political relationships, and the costs and benefits of his perilous crusade. From newspaper headlines to cloak and dagger antics, Hannigan delivers a truly unique slice of Irish Americana, bringing to life this pivotal moment in history.
“Compelling reading for everyone with an interest in this fascinating period in Ireland’s history.”—Brian Cowen, Taoiseach [Prime Minister] of Ireland, leader of the Fianna Fáil party
"Dave Hannigan knows how to tell a story, and what a story! This is a tale of political intrigue, ethnic politics, and revolution that will captivate history buffs and general readers alike. "De Valera in America" sheds new light on a memorable episode in Irish-American history."--Terry Golway, author of Irish Rebel and The Irish in America