A wealthy Protestant landowner from County Wicklow, Charles Stewart Parnell was elected to the House of Commons in 1874 at the age of 29 and quickly rose to the leadership of the Irish Home Rule Party. Highly regarded in Ireland and America as well, Parnell became more influential than any Irish politician before him. In the 1880s, Parnell appeared to be close to gaining both Home Rule and land reform for Ireland when a personal crisis intervened and cut short his career.
JOHN F. QUINN received his Ph.D. in history from Notre Dame. He has been professor of history with Salve Regina University since 1992 and is History Department Chair. A prolific writer, Dr. Quinn is the author of numerous articles, as well as the book Father Mathew’s Crusade: Temperance in Nineteenth Century Ireland and Irish-America (U. of Mass. Press, 2002). His interests include Irish America, Modern Ireland, and American Religion and Ethnicity. He is an expert on Irish and Irish-American attitudes towards slavery in the 19th Century. Dr. Quinn’s professional memberships include American Catholic Historical Association, American Conference on Irish Studies, Irish American Cultural Institute, and Society of Catholic Social Scientists. This is Dr. Quinn’s fifth speaking engagement with the Museum.