The Irish White Hand Gang

Since Kindle bestselling historical novel Divide the Dawn has come out, which features the White Hand Gang, there has been rising interest in the 1910s ruffian brawlers and brutal gals that wreaked havoc in Brooklyn’s industrial waterfront era. The White Hand Gang was a real, Irish-American street and dock gang composed of wild teens andContinue reading “The Irish White Hand Gang”

NYC Turn of the Century Gangs

Earlier this year, I tried to take a wider view of the book and ask some important questions. One of the questions I asked, and what has always weighed on my mind… Why were there gangs anyway? Why do they still exist today? After many years of research, my conclusion is really no different thanContinue reading “NYC Turn of the Century Gangs”

Sands Street Station

Here is a photo of the Sands Street Elevated Train Station in Brooklyn during the White Hand Gang’s era. It was built around 1908 and torn down in 1944. As you can see, it had many tentacles of tracks coming out from it as it was literally the central station for all Brooklyn travel. SinceContinue reading “Sands Street Station”

Finding Brooklyn’s Irishtown

I was at first made aware of an “Irishtown” in Brooklyn by an elder through word of mouth, which of course is the ancient form of Irish storytelling. My grandmother, who was born in Brooklyn in 1917, first made mention in passing when telling of stories from her childhood in the humble tenement neighborhoods. BecauseContinue reading “Finding Brooklyn’s Irishtown”

Frankie Yale – Divide the Dawn

Frankie Yale is a minor character in the historical novel Divide the Dawn (Fall, 2019). As are most of the characters in the book, he is based on a real, historical person: The Brooklyn, Italian Mafia “Capo.” Francesco Ioele moved from Italy to Southern Brooklyn in 1901 as an eight-year old and quickly became known as aContinue reading “Frankie Yale – Divide the Dawn”

What’s a Diddicoy?

What once are derogatory, offensive terms often change in time. “Irish” was once a terrible and oppressive thing to be called. In the ports of New York, Boston and New Orleans and in the Pennsylvania mines, the Appalachian mountains and anywhere else in the United States after the the Great Hunger, to be named such aContinue reading “What’s a Diddicoy?”

Glasnevin Rebelpoets

Many great novels have references within its folds that relate to the story. Oftentimes readers never notice them, and sometimes even the academics don’t catch on. The great writers use these allusions to support the story and create a feeling that helps the story move along. It’s a literary device, but I have always beenContinue reading “Glasnevin Rebelpoets”

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