Celtic Junction Arts Review

The Eight Hand Reel: A rare glimpse of Twin Cities Irish culture in the 1930s

Brian Miller

Since our founding in 2017, The Eoin McKiernan Library has done several rewarding projects on the history of Irish cultural activity in Minnesota. Our 2022 exploration of the Twin City Irish American Club brought us right up to the edge of living memory. Colorful interviews and photo-collecting trips with community members in their 90s helped paint a vivid picture of the Club’s origins among a group of immigrants who arrived in the years after World War II.

Of course, when a successful project allows us to have a good look around a particular decade, there are inevitably glimpses of what came before. So it was when I met with Vince Morin and his sons Tim and Paul in September 2021. The Morins told me how wife and mother Margaret “Sis” Morin (née McDonough) helped start the Irish American Club in 1948. They also surprised me when they said she was involved in Irish clubs and performances before the War. One of the photos they shared from this earlier era really caught my eye.

The Mystery Photo. Contributed to the McKiernan Library Archives by the Morin family

This photo, which I am calling The Mystery Photo, served as the focal point for the McKiernan Library’s 2023 local history project. In it, four men and four women stand posed in alternating order. The women are in matching costumes of gathered skirts, ribbon-tied bodice vests and white gathered blouses topped off with kerchiefs. One man holds a one-row Hohner accordion and another holds a fiddle. On the back is written “Late 30’s Festival of Nations.”

Here was a peek at what seemed certain to be a music and dance performance group from the Depression era! The Morins identified Sis McDonough third from the right and said the woman to the left of the fiddler was Sis’s “Cousin Ronnie.” They told me that the two cousins were active in the first Festival of Nations events organized by the Minnesota International Institute in the 1930s—a decade before McDonough would join forces with John Curtin, Pat Hill and others to organize the first dances for the new Twin City Irish American Club.

Inspired by our Mystery Photo, I set out to understand more about the early Festival of Nations and Irish participation in that multiethnic festival. Who were the other people in this photo and what could their stories tell us about music, dance and Irish social clubs locally during the Depression?

The Festival of Nations

International Institutes across the US were started under the auspices of the YWCA beginning in the 1910s1 with the mission “to restore a normal way of life to transplanted people and to blend the best elements in the cultures of their homelands into a truly American culture.”2 The International Institute of Minnesota began in 1919 and Alice Sickels became the first executive director of the St. Paul-based organization in 1931.3 In 1932, Sickels organized the first International Institute Folk Festival in St. Paul. Folk Festivals took place in 1932, 1933, and 1934. Then, after a year off, the event moved to a triennial schedule and rebranded as the Festival of Nations in 1936.

In her 1945 book Around the World in St. Paul, Sickels gives a colorful account of the Festival’s development. A firm believer in the pluralist vision of the Institute, Sickels argued that ethnic groups within a larger society should maintain unique cultural identities and that these values and practices have a positive impact on the wider society itself. The Festival forwarded a vision of America as a “mosaic of peoples from many lands.”4 To this end, the Institute “invited the people to bring to the Folk Festival the songs and dances they were enjoying in the privacy of their own ‘foreign’ halls and churches.”5

Clipping from old newspaper advertising "St. Patrick's Dance" at St. Paul Coliseum
Ad for St. Patrick’s Dance from the Minneapolis Star, March 17, 19329

The Irish community of the Twin Cities, bolstered by decades of immigration from Ireland, had their share of social clubs that featured music and dance at Irish-oriented halls and churches like Hibernian Hall in St. Paul and Ascension Church in Minneapolis. Newspaper listings indicate lots of activity through the 1920s with a noticeable drop off as the Great Depression set in. The Twin City Shamrock Club of St. Paul was still advertising “Free parking space for 2,000 cars” at their 1932 St. Patrick’s Dance at the St. Paul Coliseum featuring Mike Sullivan’s Champions and Frank Cotier’s Orchestra.6 By 1935, instead of a listing for a Shamrock Club dance on St. Patrick’s Day, Division 4 of the Ramsey County Ancient Order of Hibernians held a dance at the Knights of Columbus hall with an invitation “extended to members and friends of the Twin City Shamrock club.”7 The national infrastructure and wealthier membership of the AOH may have helped the Hibernians persist through this period while other clubs faded.8

The inaugural International Institute Folk Festival in 1932 had no Irish representation. Festival director Sickels was taken to task face-to-face for this oversight by a furious Irish woman who confronted her in the Greek booth asking why “the Irish, as good people as any and far better than some, have been publicly insulted by being left out?”10 Henceforth, the Irish had a presence at the event.

Groups had three options to represent themselves at these festivals: a booth in the Homelands Exhibit, participation in the Old World Market or a performance program. Sickels writes that the Irish had a booth at the Folk Festival in 1933 and 1934 and that, by the 1936 Festival of Nations, they were participating in full with performers as well.11 Since the Mystery Photo appears to show a performance group, and if it was indeed taken at a Festival of Nations, it must have been 1936 or 1939.12

1936 Festival of Nations Booklet Cover. McKiernan Library Archives
1939 Festival of Nations Booklet Cover. McKiernan Library Archives

Thanks to Festival of Nations program booklets acquired by the McKiernan Library,13 we can learn more about the Irish contingent at these events and the first musicians and dancers to represent Ireland at the festival. Both late ‘30s festivals took place on the nearly 50,000 square foot floor of the St. Paul Civic Auditorium Arena for three days in late April. For both, Homeland Exhibit booths surrounded an inner ring of Old World Market displays and various park-like facades. Performances took place either in the open space in the center or on the large stage at one end.

The Ramsey County Ladies Auxiliary, Ancient Order of Hibernians took the lead in organizing the Irish contingent both years. Frank C. Schaaf chaired the Irish group in 1936. His wife Teresa (née Daley14) was president of Ramsey County LAAOH at the time and she helped with the Irish Market at the 1939 Festival. Margaret V. Casby was the “arranger” of the 1936 Irish performance group and then chair of the entire Irish contingent in 1939. Casby was also a leader in Ramsey County LAAOH and both Casby and Schaaf went on to be statewide presidents of the organization.

1936 Festival of Nations Irish performance program listing. The costumes worn by the LAAOH Choral Club in the 1936 program look identical to those worn by the dancers in the Mystery Photo (minus the kerchiefs). McKiernan Library Archives

Both years featured singer and pianist Abigail Milner. Born in 1893 in St. Paul to an Irish mother and English father, Abbie provided music at AOH and LAAOH events in St. Paul and was organist and choir director at St. Columba Church.15 Abbie’s LAAOH Choral Club was a feature at St. Patrick’s Day events in the ’30s and she continued her Festival of Nations involvement through the late ’40s. At the 1936 Festival, her Choral Club sang sentimental Irish-American stage favorites from the 1860s, “Killarney” and “Come Back to Erin.”16 Milner took over for Casby as the arranger of the 1939 performance program.

The ’36 and ’39 festivals both featured a solo Irish jig from dancer Donna Mae Oestereich17 who was accompanied in 1936 by Milner. The 1936 festival program also lists music by an “orchestra” as part of the Irish program.

Based on what we know about Sis McDonough, and considering the instruments and costumes in our Mystery Photo, none of the above performers seem like probable matches. However, other sections of these two Festival of Nations programs list dancers doing reels, jigs and schottisches to violin accompaniment. These seem like a likelier match. The Eight Hand Reel group listed in 1939 (see below) could even, at first glance, be the group in our photo. I now believe it is at least quite close to that!

1939 Festival of Nations Irish performance program listing. McKiernan Library Archives

Eight and Six Hand Reels

The Eight Hand Reel is a group dance that was very popular in Ireland during the 1800s. Its popularity lagged at the turn of the century as new quadrilles (what would now be termed set dances) came in. The quadrilles were themselves closely related to the Eight Hand Reel in that they are danced by four couples arranged in a square. The Six Hand Reel, in contrast, is traditionally danced by two men and four women forming two trios—each consisting of a man with a woman on either side.19

It is worth noting that experienced Irish dancers are able to choose which dance to do based on the availability of dancers and might change a planned Eight Hand Reel into a Six Hand Reel somewhat on the fly. Unison-playing musicians such as fiddlers and accordion players can similarly be added or subtracted. The particular group captured in our Mystery Photo might be the product of this flexibility.

With this in mind, here are the five people in the Mystery Photo I feel confident identifying.

Sis McDonough and Friend, 1930s. Contributed to the McKiernan Library Archives by the Morin family

Margaret “Sis” McDonough (1916-1999)20

We know from her family members that Margaret Mary “Sis” McDonough (later Morin) is the woman with glasses in the Mystery Photo. Her name appears in both 1930s Festival booklets as a performer. In 1936, she is listed as dancing an “Irish Schottische” as a duo with Michael McDonough. Sis and her older brother Michael (and their four siblings) were born in St. Paul to Patrick McDonough from Carraroe, County Galway and Bridget Delia McDonough (née Folan) from Barna, County Galway. Sis represented Ireland in the “Procession of Brides” at the 1936 festival and, along with brother Michael, was part of the Eight Hand Reel featured in 1939. Sis continued her involvement with the Irish group at the Festival of Nations through the 1940s dancing at the festival in 1947 and 1949 and chairing the Irish performance group at the 1949 event.

The name Margaret McDonough also comes up repeatedly in relation to several Irish social clubs over her lifetime and Sis is still remembered with a smile by many in St. Paul today. She danced at events held by the AOH, LAAOH and Twin City Shamrock Club in the ‘30s and ‘40s. Her son Tim Morin and friend Pat Dee both remembered her as one of the group that got the Twin City Irish American Club going in 1948 and Sis was still a member of that organization in 1975.22

Large Group Photo of performers representing multiple nations at the Festival of Nations, 1930s. Sis McDonough and her cousin Roney Goodman are 3rd and 4th seated from left with a group of Irish performers. Contributed to the McKiernan Library Archives by the Morin family
From the Minneapolis Morning Tribune, Tuesday, March 6th, 1943.26

Veronica “Roney” Goodman (1915-1968)23

The Morin family also identified Sis’s cousin Veronica “Roney” (pronounced Ronnie) Goodman as the woman fourth from left in our Mystery Photo and fourth from left seated in the photo above. Roney’s mother Mary McDonough was a sister of Sis’s father Patrick. Both Mary and Patrick came from Carraroe, County Galway in 1906. In St. Paul, Mary McDonough married Icelandic immigrant Halldor Goodman. Mary Goodman may have been the McDonough family’s strongest connection to the St. Paul LAAOH. Mary led the Ramsey County LAAOH President’s Club in 1936 and went on to serve as state historian for LAAOH in the ‘40s and ‘50s.25 Mary Goodman also chaired the Irish group at the International Institute in the 1940s and led the Irish group at the 1947 Festival of Nations.

The first documentation I have found of Roney Goodman at an Irish event is the 1939 Festival of Nations where she was part of the Eight Hand Reel. She danced the Six Hand Reel at a joint Minneapolis/St. Paul, AOH/LAAOH event billed as an “Irish Feis” two weeks later (see below) and performed again in 1943 at the St. Patrick’s Day ball held by the Twin City Shamrock Club.

Johnny Malone (born ca. 1905)27

The next person I was able to identify in the Mystery Photo is Johnny Malone. Pictured in a rather short necktie to the left of Roney Goodman in the shot, Johnny came to St. Paul from Dingle, County Kerry as did several of his Malone relatives. His brother Pat operated a farm in Currie, Minnesota where Vince Morin worked along with brothers Tom and Mike Malone who were nephews of Pat and Johnny. Years later, Vince and Tom would marry Sis McDonough and her sister Kathleen after meeting them at a dance in St. Paul.

From the Minneapolis Morning Tribune, Tuesday, October 11th, 1949. The Club’s hall at the time was the Midway Club at 1931 University Ave., St. Paul. The caption lists Dan Barrett between Devaney and McDonough though Barrett is not pictured. Note that if Barrett did join between them, they would have the formation for a Six Hand Reel.

Mark Malone, son of Tom and Kathleen, remembers “Uncle Johnny” and told me the bachelor would visit his household when Mark was very young: “I remember that because he used to give each of us kids a Kennedy 50 cent piece when he came to visit! I didn’t understand money back then, but I understood large and shiny metal!”29

This photo appears (without identification of the dancers) in Alice Sickels’ memoir about the early Festival of Nations events. From Sickels, Alice L. Around the World in St. Paul. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 1945.

Ed Lenaghan (1894-1964)30

Francis Edward Lenaghan, like Sis McDonough, was involved in Irish cultural activities in St. Paul for decades. We encountered him last year in our research on the Twin City Irish American Club where he appeared as a dancer and Irish “war piper” into the early 1960s.31 Though photos of Lenaghan surfaced in our research last year, I did not recognize him as the man second from right in our Mystery Photo until I found the photo at left in the Sickels book.

The dancing man here matches the appearance of the man second from right in the Mystery Photo. The giveaway that he is Lenaghan is the costume in the Sickels photo which matches that worn by Lenaghan in every other photo I have seen of him. In fact, an older Lenaghan wears the same outfit in a photo accompanying a March 17, 1960 article in the St. Paul Dispatch that gives a bit of his biography. The Dispatch piece says Lenaghan “led a one-man crusade to preserve Gaelic dances” since arriving in St. Paul and that he wore “the costume he’s had since 1910 and which he brought with him when he migrated from Belfast, Ireland in 1920” while dancing and playing “the eerie sounding Irish war pipes.”32 Lenaghan worked as chief engineer at the Griggs Midway Building in St. Paul.

Group photo from Night With The Irish held in Savage, Minnesota on March 18, 1962 featuring Ed Lenaghan in costume. Back row from left: Terry Laska, Ted Ryan, John Knodle, Andy Vaughan, Joe Kennelly, Father Dudley, Mike Nash, Martin McHugh, Pete McDonough, Frank Austin, George O’Leary. Seated from left: Jim McCoy, Kerry Knodle, Bridie O’Leary, Mrs. Frank Knodle, Ed Lenaghan, Kathleen Flaherty, Theresa Flaherty. Photo by Smithberger. Courtesy Burnsville Historical Society Archives

In a recording made by Tom Dahill, Barbara Dahill and Charlie Heymann in St. Paul in the late 1970s, immigrant musician and poet Pat Hill remembers Ed Lenaghan as “kind of a bagpipe player” saying “he could play one tune or two or something but he could squeak it you know… [] …and he used to dress himself up in this highland rig you know. Of course, they considered that Irish as well as Scotch. The kilts.”33

It could be that Lenaghan was more popular as a dancer than as a piper. The Dispatch article talks about his years of involvement with the Irish group at the Minnesota International Institute where, by 1960, he was teaching Irish dancing regularly to a “group of youngsters” at the Institute’s building. He also brought that group to the Festival of Nations. Indeed, Ed appeared as a bagpiper at the 1936 Festival of Nations and as a dancer in 1939, 1947 and 1949. In 1947 he chaired the Irish performance program at the festival.

Lenaghan may have arrived as from Belfast as early as 1916 when a charity event in northeast Minneapolis featured “Mr. Ed. Lenihan, (bag pipe player).”34 His name appears frequently from the 1920s through the 1960s in newspaper announcements for events held by Irish social clubs on both sides of the Mississippi.

Pat Hill said Ed’s wife Barbara, still alive at the time of the Dahill interview, was an active Hibernian. Barbara Lenaghan (née McDonough) may have been another cousin of Sis’s. Barbara chaired the Irish exhibit at the 1947 Festival of Nations.

Performers in the American Program, Festival of Nations, 1930s. Courtesy University of Minnesota Libraries, Immigration History Research Center Archives

Mike Sullivan (1881-1954)35

As a musician, I was especially keen to identify the accordion player and fiddle player in our Mystery Photo. In all my searching, I have yet to come across a trace of an Irish accordion player in the Twin Cities before the 1940s other than the man in the Mystery Photo. That one is unsolved.

American performance program listing from the 1936 Festival of Nations. McKiernan Library Archives

Our fiddler is a different story. Mike Sullivan is named as the fiddler/violinist playing for the Irish performance at the Festival of Nations in both 1936 and 1939. Still, I had no confirmation that it was him in the Mystery Photo. I had a breakthrough when I found the above photo from the University of Minnesota Libraries Immigration History Research Center Archives online. This is not an Irish group but rather the “American program” from the festival. The fiddler on the left here, unidentified in the archive, appears to be the same fiddler from the Mystery Photo. Though the U of M Archives give the date of this photo as 1939, the ’39 festival booklet does not list an American program. However, the 1936 Festival booklet does list an American program (see image at right).

We have the name Mike Sullivan on both the American and Irish programs for the 1936 festival and the distinct face of a fiddler in both the American program photo and our Mystery Photo. This had to be Mike Sullivan. Eventually, I was able to track down a granddaughter of Sullivan, Roberta Pedersen, who was able to confirm that this was indeed Mike in both photos.

Identifying photos of fiddler Mike Sullivan has been a goal of ours since 2017 when, in an oral history interview conducted by Dáithí Sproule on behalf of the McKiernan Library, Roscommon-born accordion player Martin McHugh brought his name up in this exchange:

McHugh:	Dáithí, there was a fine fiddle player here, his name was Mike Sullivan. And him and his daughter they used to run dances on their own. But they had somebody else playing with them, there was the three of them. And they used to have dances, you know where United Bank is over there on Snelling and Selby? [current site of a Whole Foods] There was a dance hall up there. I think it was called the Liberty Hall, and that’s where the Irish used to go for years.
Sproule: 	That was going when you first came?
McHugh: Yea, it was winding down when I came. The Irish American Club had taken over.
Sproule: 	I see. This is probably the earliest venue that we can talk about then, this Liberty Hall.36

With the Festival of Nations photos and programs, hours of scouring newspaper archives and some help from Mike Sullivan’s granddaughter, we now know a lot about his story.

Michael Frances Sullivan was born in Ireland (I am still looking for what county) in about 1881. He immigrated to New York City with his parents in 1882 as a baby and grew up there. He married his wife Mary in New York and lived on Reid Avenue in Brooklyn where they had their first two daughters before moving to St. Paul around 1913 when Michael was 32. They had three more daughters in St. Paul and Mike settled into a long career as a letter carrier for the St. Paul post office.

He may have also performed locally soon after arrival. An April 1917 article in the Irish Standard says “Sullivan’s orchestra, which will include the Irish bagpipes, will furnish the fun for the square and step dancing” at a fundraiser for St. Paul’s new Hibernian Hall.37

Mike Sullivan is named Champion Fiddler of St. Paul. St. Paul Daily News, 1/30/192638

Mike’s music career took off in January 1926 when he entered, and won, The St. Paul Daily News-Finkelstein and Ruben fiddling contest. Part of a fiddle contest fad that swept the nation in 1926, the event awarded Mike the title of Champion Fiddler of St. Paul. He was given an elaborate custom diamond medal and a reputation that would carry him through many gigs in the following years. Mike was promised a tour of shows throughout Minnesota and the Dakotas and a recording date with Perfect Records in New York City. It is unclear whether either the tour or the recording actually panned out.

Sullivan went on to perform at Irish community events frequently up through the early 1950s. After the contest, he is often billed as “Champion Fiddler Mike Sullivan” and his groups were sometimes called “Mike Sullivan’s Champions.” He played frequently for the St. Paul-based Twin City Shamrock Club. I found several archived newspaper articles showing Mike Sullivan performing with his daughter Catherine or daughter Ann on piano. In the 1920s, they were joined by uilleann piper Patrick J. Linehan (no relation to Ed Lenaghan) to play on WCCO radio. In the late ‘40s, fiddler Mike Hughes joined them on a billing. McHugh, who landed in St. Paul in late 1949, caught just the tail end of Mike Sullivan’s long career.

The Liberty Hall at Selby and Snelling mentioned by McHugh was the site of a 1926 post-contest party described in the newspaper clipping here. In 1926, Liberty Hall was across the street from the barbershop run by cartoonist Charles Schulz’s father (the location that, in 1941, became O’Gara’s).

Article in the January, 31, 1926 St. Paul Daily News about the party at Liberty Hall celebrating Mike Sullivan’s fiddle championship.40

Mike Sullivan is listed as a violinist/fiddler in the Irish performances at the 1936, 1939 and 1947 Festival of Nations events. The step dancer, Patrick McCourt, who performed with him and daughter Ann at the 1939 festival was a longtime friend and collaborator. McCourt was from Carlingsford, County Louth.

Like other immigrant musicians of his generation, Sullivan balanced the ethnic associations of his music with new American interpretations of what it meant to be an older generation “fiddler.” Some newspaper announcements advertise Sullivan for his St. Patrick’s Day performances as an “Irish fiddler” while, in 1942, with the Minnesota Territorial Pioneers at the Minnesota State Fair, he is called an “old-time fiddler” who not only played but also called the “old-fashioned square dance.” This association with the Territorial Pioneers and square dancing makes sense with Sullivan’s participation in the American program at the Festival of Nations.

The Mystery Photo solved…. partially. From Left: Unknown, Unknown, Johnny Malone, Roney Goodman, Mike Sullivan, Sis McDonough, Ed Lenaghan, Unknown. Image courtesy Morin family.

Mystery Solved?

From the Minneapolis Journal, Friday, May 5th, 1939. All the dancers listed here lived in St. Paul as did violinist Mike Sullivan. James O’Donnell was a fiddler originally from the Shieldsville area based in Minneapolis. Minneapolis based chairman Michael J. Dillon was a champion step dancer from Kerry who went on to become Hennepin County District Attorney.41

We have identified five out of eight people in the Mystery Photo and, in the process, learned about their lives and Irish culture in 1930s St. Paul. The lineup listed in the 1939 Festival of Nations booklet for the dancers doing an Eight Hand Reel contains four of the five people we have identified. The fifth, Mike Sullivan, is listed as a fiddler in that program. I have not found any mention of Sullivan dancing so it seems unlikely that the Mystery Photo actually depicts a full Eight Hand Reel. If we assume the unknown accordion player was, like Sullivan, not a dancer, then our photo looks more like a Six Hand Reel group. The presence of accordion alone means we do not have a direct match with the description given in the 1939 festival program. It is possible that Mystery Photo comes from a separate International Institute event around the same time period or that, after the booklet was printed, there were changes made to the lineup.

There is a good argument to be made for the year 1939 as the year of the photo. The names listed for a Six Hand Reel at the Hibernian Irish Feis that took place two weeks after the 1939 festival also match what we know about the photo. Irish dancers come and go over the years but these 1939 groups look quite close to the groups in our Mystery Photo. Here are the two lineups from that spring side-by-side for comparison:

Eight Hand Reel, Festival of Nations,
St. Paul, April 23, 1939
Six Hand Reel, Irish Feis at Ascension Club,
Minneapolis, May 6, 1939
Mike Sullivan, violin Mike Sullivan, fiddle
Ann Peterfesso [née Sullivan – Mike’s daughter], piano
Margaret Mary [Sis] McDonoughMiss Margaret [Sis] McDonough
Veronica [Roney] GoodmanMiss Roney Goodman
John [Johnny] MaloneJohn [Johnny] Malone
Edward [Ed] LenaghanEd Lenaghan
Mrs. Catherine [Kitty] CoyneMrs. Kitty Coyne
Mrs. Catherine FindlanMiss Helen Sullivan
Michael McDonough
John Concannon

Catherine/Kitty Coyne is a likely candidate for one of the unknown women in the Mystery Photo. Perhaps the other woman is Mrs. Catherine Findlan. Noting the marital status indicated with the names, both women in the photo do sport what could be wedding rings. Sis’s son Paul Morin said the man with the accordion is definitely not his uncle Michael McDonough. Martin McHugh remembered a John Concannon when discussing musicians in his oral history interview saying Concannon’s daughter was a “lovely step dancer.”42 Unfortunately, McHugh passed away in 2022 so we can not ask him if Concannon played the box.

The McKiernan Library’s first local history project looked primarily at the 1970s through a series of oral history recordings. Martin McHugh’s interview during that project directed us back in time to the Twin City Irish American Club of the late ’40s and ’50s. When we studied the Twin City Irish American Club, Sis McDonough’s story and photos brought us back to the 1930’s. Fiddler Mike Sullivan is the obvious next thread that pulls us back to the 1920s. We look forward to learning more about Sullivan, his fiddle contest win and local Irish culture of earlier decades!


 1Sickels, Alice L. Around the World in St. Paul. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 1945. p.22.
 2Sickels. p.23.
 3“History.” International Institute of Minnesota. September 11, 2023. https://iimn.org/about/.
 4Sickels. p. 22.
 5Sickels. p. 76.
 6“St. Patrick’s Dance.” Minneapolis Journal, March 13, 1932. Newspapers.com.
 7“Dance.” St. Paul Dispatch. March 15, 1935. Microfilm. Minnesota History Center Library.
 8The Twin City Shamrock Club survived the Depression and held a St. Patrick’s Day event as late as 1951.
 10Sickels. p. 80.
 11Sickels. pp 80-81.
 12Another possibility is that the photo was taken at a separate event organized by the International Institute. Some newspaper announcements mention “parties” held by the Institute.
 13The McKiernan Library has, as of 9/15/2023, acquired program booklets for 4 of the first 5 Festival of Nations. We are missing 1942 but we have 1936, 1939, 1947 and 1949.
 14Teresa was born in St. Paul around 1898. Her parents were both from Ireland.
 15Mary Ellen Milner Otis. “I almost fell off my chair when I saw this photo!! This is my aunt!! My Dad’s sister, Abbie (Abigail) Milner !!! She was born & raised in St. Paul. She became the Organist and Choir Director at St. Columba Church in St. Paul. She was very talented…” Facebook. April 22, 2023. https://www.facebook.com/groups/190978714441142.
 16Balfe, Falconer and Claribel in the booklet are the composers of these songs.
17Spelled “Ostreich” on the 1936 program, “Oestrich” on the 1939 program and “Oestreich” in a 1942 newspaper listing and some census documents. Oestreich was Donna Mae’s maiden name from her German father. Her mother Mary Chines had Irish immigrant parents.
 18Brennan, Helen. The Story of Irish Dance. Dingle: Mount Eagle Publications Ltd, 1999. p. 98
 19O’Rafferty, Peadar. Irish Folk Dance Book, Book Two. London: Paterson’s Publications Ltd, 1950. p. 17.
 20Margaret Maryagnes McDonough. Social Security Numerical Identification Files. Familysearch.org.
 21See “Plan Irish Party.” Minneapolis Journal. May 5, 1939 and “Shamrock Club Plans Annual St. Pat Ball.” Minneapolis Morning Tribune. March 16, 1943.
 221975 Twin City Irish American Club Roster from Pat Duffy. McKiernan Library Archives.
 23Veronica Stolt. Social Security Death Index. Familysearch.org.
24 “Hibernian Group Will Celebrate Anniversary.” Minneapolis Star. March 9, 1936. Newspapers.com.
25 See Hibernians of Minnesota. Ireland to Minnesota Stories From the Heart. St. Paul: Hibernian Life Insurance Fund, 1996. p. 3 and “Irish History 26Essay Winners to be Honored.” Minneapolis Star. May 19, 1952. Newspapers.com.
 27The 1940 Census has a John Malone born in Ireland in 1905 who is rooming at 178 West Ninth Street in downtown St. Paul. He is widowed and working as a truck driver for a laundry.
28 The Minneapolis Journal of May 5, 1939 lists “John Maloney” but a May 3, 1939 announcement for the same event in the Minneapolis Star has “John Malone.”
 29Mark Malone. Email message to author. September 10, 2022.
 30Francis E Lenaghan. Social Security Numerical Identification Files. Familysearch.org
31Like other pipers in Ireland, Lenaghan used the term “war pipes” for his mouth-blown bagpipes that were likely very similar, if not identical, in design to the Scottish highland bagpipes. He did not play the bellows-blown uilleann pipes.
 32Hite, Harry. “Auld Sod Spirit Will Rule Tonight.” St. Paul Dispatch. March 17, 1960. Microfilm. Minnesota History Center Library.
33 Patrick Hill Collection, Disk 3, Track 5. McKiernan Library Archives.
 34“Irish Day Was A Huge Success.” The Irish Standard. November 4, 1916. Newspapers.com.
 35The 1881 birth year is based on a 1918 Draft Registration Card. The year of death is based on an obituary found in the Minneapolis Tribune of August 23, 1954.
 36Martin McHugh Oral History Interview, transcript, p. 16. McKiernan Library Archives.
 37“Grand Ball and Drawing Contest.” The Irish Standard. April 28, 1917. Newspapers.com.
 38Microfilm. Minnesota History Center Library.
 39Tom Dahill is currently the proud owner and player of P.J. Linehan’s set of William Rowsome uilleann pipes.
 40Microfilm. Minnesota History Center Library.