Reflections #4: RECAPing Auld Irishtown

I was very pleased to encounter Loingsigh’s writing. It was intriguing to follow up with this article having read the Smithsonian’s “Whiskey Wars” prior to this. Loingsigh’s article has put the Whiskey Wars in context of a greater history, while tracing the trajectory of Irish history within Vinegar Hill. His mode of research was based off of several strategies, one of which was the experiences of his grandmother, who was a primary source at hand. The layers he discovered are native to his homeland, which is not a common experience in the melting pot of New York City.

In regards to the RECAP evaluation, This article was relevant for our previous readings, and for our site visits as well. Loingsigh’s expertise is apparent in his writing style, as he is planning to write 3 books based on this historic matter. Loingsigh gives the reader a large window, which tells us that his idea of tracing history was inspired by the early stories of his grandparents (early 20th century) to recent research he as uncovered in the past decade (the articles on the White Hand Gang, and Martin Scorsese’s Gangs of New York). His grandparents serve as primary sources, while his research conducted within Municipal Archives on Chambers Street and New York Times articles which also proves to be primary and secondary sources. The purpose of this article was to inform readers both about the author’s upcoming works, and to offer a new range of information which was undocumented on Irishtown’s history. Loingsigh stresses the loss of information on Irishtown, how it was not charted as a territory, but exists through the experience of others.


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