No. 128 NAI DFA 19/9

Confidential report from William J.B. Macaulay to
Joseph P. Walshe (Dublin)
(72/100/32) (Confidential)

New York, 27 September 1932

[matter omitted]1

Apparently2 the Race Convention failed to bring together the various groups represented by Irish and Irish-American Societies in New York. The usual jealousy seems to have arisen, this time based on the allegation that the Convention was entirely in the hands of Mr. Ford of the 'Irish World' who was said to be using it as a means for increasing the sales of his paper. In any event, the proposal to boycott British goods seems so far to have made little headway.

Mr. Connolly, owner of the 'Irish Echo', has started a party entitled 'The Irish-American Independent Political Organization'. There has been a growing resentment among Irish-Americans against the increasing penetration of Jews and Italians into Tammany Hall. While the majority of the leaders of Tammany are Irishmen, it is becoming more and more noticeable that Municipal appointments are being withheld from Irishmen. For example, the Borough President of Manhattan, who has enormous patronage, is a Jew named Levy and the head of the biggest City department, Health and Sanitation, is named Schroeder. It is frequently stated that Tammany regards the Irish vote as docile and that there is scarcely any need to placate it by giving it even half its share of patronage, while the Jews and Italians have to be carefully nursed to keep them in the Organization. Mr. Connolly's party was, therefore, founded with the object of opposing the Tammany candidates unless the Irish-Americans obtain a bigger share of the spoils. If this new Organization assumes dangerous proportions, which is possible, Tammany will probably have to buy it off. At the present moment Connolly is talking of getting his group to support the Republican candidate, Colonel Donovan,3 for the Governorship, unless the Democrats buy their support by giving them certain Commissionerships. It is in the City electoral districts that the Republicans are weakest and if Connolly's party causes a split in the Democratic Organization in only six of these, the Democratic candidate is almost certain to be defeated. This new Organization proposes completely to eschew all Irish politics. It is admittedly opportunistic and has the merit of not even pretending to be patriotic. Its worthy aims 'to secure our legitimate share of political appointments and to procure for poverty-stricken Irish-American families fair relief treatment' have a definition which will appeal to those deprived of the jobs now chiefly going to Jews and to the large number of families not successful in securing any share of the large sums voted by the City for relief. The manner in which public funds for relief are administered through local bosses is not to be described.

[signed] W.J.B. Macaulay

1 Marginal note: 'Seen by Secretary, 7/X/32, copy taken to show to President'.

2 From this point until the end of the second sentence in the following paragraph the text has been highlighted by a line drawn down the left hand margin of the page.

3 Colonel William Joseph 'Wild Bill' Donovan (1883-1959), later a trusted adviser to President Roosevelt and the founder of the Office of Strategic Services, the forerunner of the CIA, during the Second World War.

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