Frank Gallagher


Life
1903-1962; [Frank B. Gallagher; pseud. “David Hogan”], b. Cork; Cork Free Press; joined Irish Volunteers; worked with Erskine Childers on Republican publicity staff, and ed. Irish Bulletin, 1919-1921; imprisoned 1920; joined hunger strike, 5–15 April 1920 - though fearing that the British Administration was seeking to incite conditions for an Irish Amaritsar; reading Harry Johnston’s anti-empire account of Africa (The Colonization of Africa, 1899); fnd. ed. Irish Press, 1931; at behest of Eamon de Valera; wrote short stories under several pseudonyms; works include Days of Fear: A Diary of the Hunger Strike (1929), set in Mountjoy Prison during the war of Independence and ded. to Erskine Childers;
 
issued The Challenge of the Sentry and Other Stories of the Irish War (1928) and Dark Mountain and Other Stories (1931); appt. deputy director of Radio Éireann, 1936; appt. director of the Government Information Bureau, 1939–48 and 1951-54; joined staff of the National Library of Ireland to work on the Dictionary of National Biography, ed. R. J. Hayes; issued Four Glorious Years (1953), as David Hogan [pseud]; Indivisible Island: A History of the Partition of Ireland (1957; 1959); The Anglo-Irish Treaty, ed. & intro. Thomas O’Neill (1965), part of unfinished biography of de Valera; d. July 1962, Dublin. IF2 DIW DIB DIH DIL

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Works
Prose
  • Days of Fear: A Diary of the Hunger Strike (London: John Murray 1928), 175pp.; Do. (NY: Harper Bros. MCMXXIX [1929]), 175pp.; Do. (Cork: Mercier Press 2008), 158pp.;
  • [as David Hogan] Four Glorious Years (Dublin: Irish Press 1953), 404pp.; Do. [2nd edn., as Frank Gallagher], with an introduction ‘About the author’ by Declan Jackson (Dublin: Blackwater Press 2005), xxv, 404pp., ill. [8pp. of pls.; ports].
  • The Anglo-Irish Treaty, ed. & intro. by Thomas O’Neill (London: Hutchinson 1965), 205pp.; Do. [rep. edn.] (Cork: Mercier Press 1967; 2008), 160pp.;
  • The Indivisible Island The History of the Partition of Ireland (London 1957, 1959), and Do. (Westport 1974).
Fiction [as David Hogan]
  • The Challenge of the Sentry and Other Stories of the Irish War (Dublin: Talbot 1928), [2], 234, [4]pp.
  • Dark Mountain and Other Stories (Dublin & Cork: Talbot 1931), viii, 278, [2]pp.

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Criticism
Graham Walker, ‘“The Irish Dr Goebbels” Frank Gallagher and Irish Republican Propaganda’, in Journal of Contemporary History, XXVII (1992), pp.149-65.

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Commentary
Richard Kain, Dublin in the Age of William Butler Yeats and James Joyce (Oklahoma UP 1962; Newton Abbot: David Charles 1972): ‘In Four Glorious Years (1953), David Hogan has recounted the vicissitudes of the Irish Bulletin, issued from November, 11 1919, to December 13, 1921, without interruption, despite constant raids and even the theft of the mimeographing machinery. Ingeniously disguised as an insurance society, the office was on the floor above a crown solicitor’s. At one time English detectives conducted a house-to-house search, but they never thought of looking above the crown solicitor’s rooms! Another time the printing machinery was seized and the Castle issued some forged releases of invented Sinn Fein “propaganda,” a move that was immediately discovered. The climax of this exposure of England’s “government by forgery” came, with the detection that an official Castle typewriter had been used to fabricate threatening letters, which, typed on stolen Dail Eireann stationery, had been created to show that Sinn Fein was, as Lloyd George was calling it, a “murder gang.”’ (p.133.)

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J .H Whyte, Interpreting Northern Ireland (OUP 1991), writes that Frank Gallagher saw partition as a product of British malignancy. (p.118.)

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Quotations
Literary memoir: ‘I found a job on P. J. Little’s New Ireland, printed by the Wood Printing Works in Fleet Street. The big office up the narrow stairs on the first floor had become the meeting-place of the writers and artists who stood beside Sinn Féin. Fred Higgins used to come shyly into the room and, after talking and banter, would take from his inside pocket a poem written specially for us. Padraic Ó Conaire, with his pipe and his short story written in Irish, came as frequently. It was there, or through that group, I first met Andrew E Malone, Austin Clarke and Stephen McKenna, the translator of Plotinus. I met there Mario Esposito … Liam Slattery, Kevin O’Sheil, and Liam Ó Briain of Galway, and, I think, Rory O’Connor. There I met, too, Seamus MacManus, Jack Morrow, Jack B Yeats, and Kathleen Goodfellow (‘Michael Scot’). Quoted in Hilary Pyle, Estelle Solomons, Patriot Portraits (1966).

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Days of Fear (1929): ‘Read Harry Johnston until the light died out of the cell ... Felt an unspeakable pity for these rude peoples who come so suddenly under an Empire’s harrow ... The cruelty of all empires! The dead they leave by the wayside ... the numbed hearts ... the desolate un-understanding homes ... huts of grass with no light in them save the whites of eyes waiting for the next blow ... barbarous, never-ending injustice against which even anger is pitiable ... All empires are the same ... ruthless ... efficient ... completely soulless ... incapable of understanding. One wants to cry. / But, brothers of Africa, we whom you know not of are making one empire weaker.’ [25]

Further: ‘The history of an empire is such a cowardly thing when it is understood [113; …] Subject peoples have few historians until they are free; that is strange too. […] It means that until a people is freed the class which has the leisure and the means which writing history implies is foreign to its own people; that the historical class is ashamed of its own people until by recognised freedom it becomes respectable […] And, yet, it is not so strange; for the learned are usually the sons of the well-to-do - in subject peoples at least - and the well-to-do are themselves the sons of Mammon - not all, but many. And it is Mammon which enslaves and oppresses weak nations. It is really the historians’ own fathers who are being written of by them; and it becomes akin to parricide for the historians of a subject people to champion its strivings for freedom. […] Perhaps that is also why a people battling against imperial encroachment is led by men of great character and great ability; but not often of great culture […] Here, too, may be the reason why a people when it becomes free becomes materialistic; when freedom is won the class which reverences respectability has no longer reason to malign its nation so it leads it; lead it to the worship of Mammon, the only deity that the respectable class has every really understood […] This was never so clear to [114] me as now when those who are doing battle for us outside are the waitresses and quay-workers; while many who are called cultured and learned are cursing the closed doors of a favourite club […] . (pp.114-15; for longer extracts, see infra.)

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Notes
Reading list: Gallagher was reading Henry Johnston’s Colonisation and Africa in prison when he commenced his hunger strike. (See Days of Fear, 1929, p.9.)

Sister Finbarr, whom Benedict Kiely encountered during his year-long stay at Cappagh Hospital, 1938=39, was a sister of Frank Gallagher, herein called ‘a noted old revolutionary and tthe frist editor of Eamon de Valera’s The Irish Press’ Sister Finbarr thought that too much reading would set a long-term patient brooding. (Kiely, Drink to the Bird, London: Methuen 1991, p.16.) .

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