Guide to the John Byrne Collection MSS.1971.01.01

SJSU Special Collections & Archives
© 2008
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library
San José State University
One Washington Square
San José, CA 95192-0028
special.collections@sjsu.edu


Language of Material: English
Contributing Institution: SJSU Special Collections & Archives
Title: John Byrne Collection
creator: Byrne, John
creator: Condon, Mary
Identifier/Call Number: MSS.1971.01.01
Physical Description: 6 boxes (7.5 linear feet)
Date (inclusive): 1886-1987
Abstract: Friends of Irish Freedom (FOIF), the American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic (AARIR), the Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH), the Irish Press (Dublin, Ireland), the Irish Republican Prisoners and Soldiers Dependents Fund, and the Celtic Cross Association are among the many Irish American organizations that worked to support and fund Ireland's fight for independence. This collection primarily consists of materials and documents from the AARIR, but it also contains documents from other Irish American organizations that relate to the administrative and fund raising activities in which Irish Americans engaged. Additionally, there are numerous Irish American newspapers, clippings, and pamphlets which document the struggle for an Irish Republic.

Access

Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the San José State University Library Special Collections & Archives. All requests for permission to publish or quote manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Director of Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Special Collections & Archives as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader. Copyright restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files from or derived from these collections is restricted to research and educational purposes.

Preferred Citation

John Byrne Collection, MSS-1971-01-01, San José State University Library, Special Collections & Archives.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Diana Kohnke. Finding aid EAD encoded by Diana Kohnke. Additional materials in the collection processed and EAD encoded by Lynn Sheehy. Reviewed by Danelle Moon and Erin Louthen. Additional rehousing completed, and finding aid updated, by Stephanie Watson, June 2016.

Project Information

This finding aid was created as part of the Survey and Cataloging Project, a two-year San José State University Library grant project funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. The project began in 2008. The Project Director is Danelle Moon. The Project Archivist is Erin Louthen.

Acquisition Information

This is an artificial collection and has been added to by multiple individuals. However, the bulk of the materials were donated by Dr. Mary Condon, professor of Irish History at San José State University in the 1960s. The remainder of the collection was compiled by San José State University library staff.

Custodial History

The bulk of the materials in this collection were preserved and maintained by the Secretary-Treasurer of the Southern California chapter of the AARIR, John Byrne. John Byrne entrusted these materials to Dr. Mary Condon.

Biographical History

John Byrne was born circa 1866 on a small farm 25 miles south of Dublin near Asford, Wicklow County, Ireland. In 1906 Byrne moved to Los Angeles, California and became instrumental in helping to fund the Irish nationalist movement. Friends of Irish Freedom (FOIF) emerged in California in 1916, becoming the state's primary Irish American organization. Its main purpose was to gain independence for Ireland. John Byrne was the Secretary-Treasurer of the Southern California chapter of the FOIF and worked to promote the cause by writing letters and distributing pamphlets. When the FOIF of California merged with Eamon De Valera's newly founded American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic (AARIR), Byrne became the Secretary-Treasurer of the Los Angeles chapter. Although returning only once to Ireland, John Byrne devoted his life to the Irish nationalist cause.

Bibliography

Sarbaugh, Timothy J. John Byrne: The Life and Times of the Forgotten Irish Republican of Los Angeles. Southern California Quarterly. 63, no.4 (Winter 1981).

Scope and Content of Collection

This artifical collection consists of materials relating to the activities of Irish American organizations as they worked to support and promote Irish independence. The bulk of the documents represented are mainly from the early twentieth century and are primarily from the Los Angeles chapter of the American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic (AARIR). Items from the merging of the Friends of Irish Freedom (FOIF) with the AARIR are also represented. Additionally, there are a significant number of documents from other Irish American organizations which are represented, such as the Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH), the Celtic Cross Association, the Irish Press, the American Trade Defense Commission, the Irish White Cross, the Irish Republican Prisoners and Soldiers Dependents Fund, and the American League for the Irish Freedom Fund. The collection contains financial records, organizational correspondence and personal correspondence, publicity and event documents, newspapers, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, oral history tapes and transcripts, and other printed matter.

Arrangement

This collection is arranged into four series: Series I: Personal Correspondence; Series II: Organizations; Series III: Printed Matter; and Series IV: Miscellaneous Related Material.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Republicanism -- Ireland -- History -- 20th century
Irish Americans -- Newspapers
Irish Americans -- Societies, etc.
Irish Americans -- California
Irish American Catholics -- California -- History
Sinn Fein
Ancient Order of Hibernians
Celtic Cross (Organization)
Friends of Irish Freedom
Irish Press (Dublin, Ireland)
Irish Republican Army
Byrne, John
Condon, Mary

 

Personal Correspondence Series 1 1886-1962

Scope and Contents note

This series consists of the personal correspondence of John Byrne and reflects his lifelong commitment to the Irish nationalist cause. Included are letters to and from prominent Irish leaders, including Eamon De Valera and Sean O'Kelly.
Box 1, Folder 1

Personal Correspondence 1924-1962

Box 1, Folder 2

Personal Correspondence 1908-1954

Box 1, Folder 3

Personal Correspondence 1901-1954

Box 1, Folder 4

Personal Correspondence 1935-1958

Box 1, Folder 5

Personal Correspondence 1911-1950

Box 1, Folder 6

Personal Correspondence 1926-1961

Box 1, Folder 7

Personal Correspondence 1941

Box 1, Folder 8

Personal Correspondence 1941-1956

Box 1, Folder 9

Personal Correspondence 1953-1961

Box 1, Folder 10

Personal Correspondence 1948-1961

Box 1, Folder 11

Personal Correspondence 1886-1957

Box 1, Folder 12

Personal Correspondence 1955-1961

Box 1, Folder 13

Personal Correspondence 1916-1959

Box 1, Folder 14

Personal Correspondence 1889-1960

 

Organizations Series 2 1919-1959

Scope and Contents note

This series consists of documents from national, regional, and Californian Irish American organizations. It includes items such as: financial records, correspondence and Irish bonds. This series also contains national, regional, and Californian AARIR documents. However, the majority of the documents reflect the activities of the Los Angeles Chapter of the AARIR, and its role in the Irish Republican cause. This series is arranged alphabetically and is deliniated by organizational name.
Box 1, Folder 15

America First Committee undated

Box 1, Folder 16

American Commission on Irish Independence 1920

Box 1, Folder 17

American League for Irish Freedom Fund 1919

Box 1, Folder 18

Ancient Order of Hibernians 1917-1923

Box 1, Folder 19

Celtic Cross Association 1921

Box 1, Folder 20

Fianna Fail 1931-1933

Box 1, Folder 21

Friends of Irish Freedom: Financials 1919-1920

Box 1, Folder 22

Friends of Irish Freedom: Financials 1920-1921

Box 1, Folder 23

Friends of Irish Freedom: General 1919-1921

Box 1, Folder 24

Irish American Relief 1924

Box 1, Folder 25

Irish Election Fund: Irish Republican Party 1922-1926

Box 1, Folder 26

Irish Freedom League 1924

Box 1, Folder 27

Irish Press (Dublin, Ireland) 1929-1954

Box 1, Folder 28

Irish Press (Dublin, Ireland) 1928-1955

Box 1, Folder 29

Irish Republican Soldiers and Prisoners Dependents Fund 1924

Box 1, Folder 30

Irish Volunteers Dependents Fund 1921

Box 1, Folder 31

Irish Women's Purchasing League 1924

Box 1, Folder 32

United Irish Societies 1922-1923

Box 1, Folder 33

Women's Prisoner's Defense League 1929

Box 1, Folder 34

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Articles and Incorporation 1937

Box 1, Folder 35

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Bulletins 1921-1926

Box 1, Folder 36

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Bulletins 1921

Box 2, Folder 1

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Correspondence 1919-1959

Box 2, Folder 2

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Correspondence 1921-1930

Box 2, Folder 3

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Events 1929-1934

Box 2, Folder 4

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Financials 1921-1926

Box 2, Folder 5

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Financials 1921-1923

Box 2, Folder 6

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Financials 1921-1936

Box 2, Folder 7

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Financials 1921-1937

Box 2, Folder 8

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: General 1921-1936

Box 2, Folder 9

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: General 1924-1931

Box 2, Folder 10

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: General 1926-1930

Box 2, Folder 11

American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic: Resolutions 1927

 

Printed Matter Series 3 1890-1987

Scope and Contents note

This series reflects the activities of the Irish nationalist movement in the United States and, in more specific cases, California. Items included in this series are: pamphlets, bulletins, speeches, press releases and event documents relating to Irish Americans in the United States, a variety of general newspaper clippings both cultural and political in nature, AARIR correspondence, picnic and reunion programs, and American reports on conditions in Ireland. Examples of Irish American and Irish newspapers included in this series are: The Irish American Review, The Republic, The Irish Nation, The Irish World, The Leader, National Hibernian, The Wicklow People, Sinn Fein, Irish Press, Irish World, The Irish Republic, The Irish Republic, The Irish Press, The Los Angeles Examiner, National Hibernian, Sinn Fein, and The Wicklow People.
Box 2, Folder 12

Printed Matter 1925-1954

Box 2, Folder 13

Printed Matter 1917-1920

Box 2, Folder 14

Printed Matter undated

Box 2, Folder 15

Printed Matter undated, 1919-1920

Box 2, Folder 16

Printed Matter undated

Box 2, Folder 17

Printed Matter undated

Box 2, Folder 18

Printed Matter 1939-1940

Box 2, Folder 19

Printed Matter 1938

Box 2, Folder 20

Printed Matter 1967-1987

Box 3, Folder 1

Printed Matter 1965

Box 3, Folder 2

Printed Matter 1941-1949, 1962

Box 3, Folder 3

Printed Matter 1923-1966

Box 3, Folder 4

Printed Matter 1921-1922

Box 3, Folder 5

Printed Matter 1920-1922

Box 3, Folder 6

Printed Matter 1890-1919

Box 3, Folder 7

Printed Matter 1928-1966

Box 3, Folder 8

Printed Matter 1949

Box 3, Folder 9

Printed Matter 1921-1979

Box 3, Folder 10

Printed Matter 1946-1958

Box 3, Folder 11

Printed Matter 1945-1947

Box 3, Folder 12

Printed Matter 1947-1952

Box 3, Folder 13

Printed Matter 1945-1952

Box 3, Folder 14

Printed Matter undated, 1927

Box 3, Folder 15

Printed Matter 1954-1959

Box 3, Folder 16

Printed Matter 1924-1959

Box 3, Folder 17

Printed Matter undated, 1914-1960

Box 3, Folder 18

Printed Matter undated

Box 3, Folder 19

Printed Matter undated, 1932-1938

Box 3, Folder 20

Printed Matter 1930

Box 4, Folder 1

Printed Matter undated, 1926-1927

Box 4, Folder 2

Printed Matter 1925-1930

Box 4, Folder 3

Printed Matter circa 1920-1929

Box 4, Folder 4

Printed Matter circa 1920-1929

Box 4, Folder 5

Printed Matter undated, 1917-1926

Box 4, Folder 6

Printed Matter undated, 1923

Box 4, Folder 7

Printed Matter undated, 1928

Box 4, Folder 8

Printed Matter 1967,1977

Box 4, Folder 9

Printed Matter 1954

Box 4, Folder 10

Printed Matter 1958

Box 4, Folder 11

Printed Matter 1927, 1970

Box 4, Folder 12

Printed Matter 1927-1930

Box 4, Folder 13

Printed Matter 1932

Box 4, Folder 14

Printed Matter 1926

Box 4, Folder 15

Printed Matter 1923-1951

Box 4, Folder 16

Printed Matter 1921

Box 4, Folder 17

Printed Matter 1921

Box 4, Folder 18

Printed Matter 1925

Box 4, Folder 19

Printed Matter 1924

Box 4, Folder 20

Printed Matter 1922

Box 4, Folder 21

Printed Matter 1923-1961

Box 4, Folder 22

Printed Matter 1915-1934

Box 4, Folder 23

Printed Matter 1954

Box 4, Folder 24

Printed Matter 1914-1954

Box 4, Folder 25

Printed Matter 1927-1941

Box 4, Folder 26

Printed Matter undated

Box 4, Folder 27

Printed Matter 1928-1931

Box 4, Folder 28

Printed Matter undated, 1923, 1967

Box 5, Folder 1

Printed Matter 1926-1931

Box 5, Folder 2

Printed Matter 1920-1921

Box 5, Folder 3

Printed Matter 1917,1938

Box 5, Folder 4

Printed Matter 1919-1922

Box 5, Folder 5

Printed Matter 1920

Box 5, Folder 6

Printed Matter 1922

Box 5, Folder 7

Printed Matter 1924, 1954,1959

Box 5, Folder 8

Printed Matter 1921, 1951, 1954

 

Miscellaneous Related Material Series 4 1890-1987

Scope and Contents note

This series contains miscellaneous materials associated with John Byrne and Mary Condon including: personal correspondence of John Byrne, letters to Mary Condon from Dennis Clark, the death certificate and personal effects documents of IRA member Tom Fay, materials gathered by Timothy Sarbaugh for personal research purposes, and oral history tapes believed to be of Joseph Wehrly, the Murray Family, Margaret White, and John Bryne, Jr. Two boxes contain index cards used to organize the collection at an earlier date.
Box 5, Folder 9

Correspondence to Mary Condon undated, 1946-1974

Box 5, Folder 10

Personal Papers of Mary Condon undated, 1922-1967

Box 5, Folder 11

Department of External Affairs of Ireland: Statements and Speeches 1970

Box 5, Folder 12

Letter to Timothy Sarbough 1979

Box 5, Folder 13

Miscellaneous Material 1908-1989

Box 5, Folder 14

Murray Family Interview by Mary Condon 1968 August

Box 5, Folder 15

Murray Family Interview by Mary Condon (copy) 1968 August

Box 5, Folder 16

Interview Fionna by Mary Condon undated

Box 5, Folder 17

Interview Cahalan by Mary Condon 1989 September 15

Box 6, Box 1

Main Reference undated

Box 6, Box 2

Cross Reference undated