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The Teetotallers Live at Chief O’Neill’s


The Teetotallers live in New York, April 2013, via Rafe Stefani

Kevin Crawford, Martin Hayes, and John Doyle, The Teetotallers,
at Chief O’Neill’s Pub, Chicago, IL, April 22, 2013.

This is an e-mail I wrote to DJ Mary Caraway of WHPK’s Feast of Irish Folk after I got home from the first or two nights the Teetotallers played at Chief O’Neill’s. Since she excerpted some of it on her radio show tonight, I decided it was probably blog-worthy too:

It’s a perfectly balanced trio. Sometimes you think the Kevin is the leader, other times no. Sometimes you think Kevin and John are really tight, and that Martin is kind of doing his own thing, but then it will shift, and Martin and John will be so tight so almost can’t separate the sounds. And so on. The really hard and fast reels were my favorites, although John’s crooning voice was quite nice as well. They broke down the Wild Rover in a minor key. They loosened my joints and had all our toes tapping. Go early and get a good seat. The banter was lovely, and there were a few teetotalling jokes. John Williams gave an encore. This trio is very well balanced, in my opinion. I’ve grown so accustomed to seeing Martin play with Dennis, that John seems a wilder and more rugged match. John makes Dennis sound like Charlie Watts. When an artist’s talent and mastery of his tools matures, he can start to let go a little bit and just let the energy guide him. I think that’s where all three of these musicians are at in their careers. What a joy.


The Teetotallers live in New York, April 2013, via Rafe Stefani

You can hear the Teetotallers here: https://soundcloud.com/ballyopromo-1/the-teetotallers-track-7/s-Zrvru and you can see them here: https://www.facebook.com/theteetotallers Can’t wait for a CD… or better yet, a return to Chicago!

UPDATE 10/19/13: The Teetotallers’ concert in Cape Breton at Celtic Colours 2013 was streamed live over the internet last Sunday night. The A/V production was world class. My old ROTEL receiver had just been cleaned out and hooked up to my computer. The effect was stunning. The music got so deep into my brain that I dreamt it two nights later; I woke up with the Wild Rover breakdown “hand it over, give it o’er” in my ear in the dark before dawn. It was haunting. Unfortunately the tapes of the concert aren’t available, but it was quite special to see. Later that night I went out to the best session ever at the Galway Arms where Maurice Lennon performed this:

The Unruly Boy (1911)

In the Youth of a Great City

Fr. Maurice J. Dorney

The Rev. Father Maurice J Dorney of Chicago said: “When I was a small boy–and I was to talk about the evolution of Chicago schools not city schools generally–there was a great distinction. I was enrolled in the first census I think that was taken of the public school children of Chicago in 1855. There were 3,000 and I was one of them, so that I can go back pretty well into the history of the schools of Chicago. In those days there were many thoughts that do not exist now. In those days the difference of creed meant a whole lot in all the departments of life. Our people of course, of all classes, have come from races that were discordant, but by the schools of the cities, by our continued association, we have learned to appreciate the good things in each other, so that today in every respect the schools in the city of Chicago that are called Catholic are as much public schools as the schools that are simply and purely denominated so, and we recognize–my teachers and all of the teachers of Chicago recognize the board of education, we receive all their courses, we follow them, we go to their institutes, in fact, I think the man who is the best known in the city of Chicago in our schools is Mr. John D. Shoop, assistant superintendent of schools, better known than the name of mostly any of the people directly connected with our own schools. He stands high with us, he is one man to whom we look for explanation in all matters that are of a studious nature in connection with the elaboration of our own schools. So consider that, Mr. Bennett, you are vice-president of a board of education that has not something over 300,000 children enrolled, but a board of education that has more than 425,000 children enrolled in it, including all our schools as well as the others. I have said to you I was enrolled in the census of 1855 here in the city of Chicago. The first school in the city of Chicago stood on the site where the Tribune now stands. I suppose the Tribune claims, and may be with justice, that it is a development of that first thought in education reaching today to the highest possible consummation. I do not know whether the Tribune would be that modest or not, but I presume from other things that I know that it is. Across the road stood the second school that we had, the old brick school house called the Dearborn school.

The Unruly Boy

Chicago’s history is not the history of one very long life, and yet it has shown its material development in the school question in a most extraordinary way. It has also shown that same character of development in the lines of its education. The simplest things were the things that we were taught in those days, reading, writing, arithmetic and spelling. I think we learned them just as well as they do today, but our horizon was shortened by these, and no glimpse into anything greater or more wonderful was shown to us. Maybe some of us older people are not sorry for that kind of an education which limited us to the practical things and forced us to grasp after the other things ourselves. Some of us even imagine that where there is ambition there will be a will strong enough to achieve, even if all the wonderful advantages of today are not given. In the early days we were confined, as I said, but gradually the systems grew until they have embraced lines of knowledge that are now within the public schools, making it the equal even of the university itself–our high school children, our normal school children, the various trade schools that are connected with them, make it an ideal system, reaching out little by little into all the arts that man may have.

There have been a lot of things remedied. I remember one thing in the early days, the evolution of corporal punishment. It used to amuse me to think about that. In my early days when in school it was not abolished, but it had one fair thing about it. The teacher got licked sometimes as well as the scholars. The system has grown from that unruliness into a great big system where order reigns everywhere, and I am just a trifle afraid a little too much order. The order that excludes, for instance, the unruly boy from our school who needs the school more than the boy who is actually a very good boy, is one of the things that I think is order run to seed, you know. We have in the city of Chicago today many thousand boys running the streets who ought to be in school, who are dismissed from school for insufficient cause. They are capable of being governed in some way, and we ought to find a way, and the way certainly is not to exclude them from all training. I am not criticizing any one school. I have 1,600 children in my own school, and I find it difficult not to follow that. It is easier to exclude a boy who causes you trouble, especially when you have got so many hundred you do not know what to do with, than to take that special case and work it up into the good citizenship, which is absolutely possible in mostly all cases. It requires time, it requires trouble, it requires work, but it can be done. There is no bad boy made by nature, at least, there are but few of them that cannot be brought back and created into good citizenship with proper work.”

— Republished from “Municipal advance‬: ‪extracts from papers on various municipal services read at the first International Municipal Congress and Exposition, Chicago, September 18-30, 1911″‬ ‪(Google eBook)‬ Pages 92-93.

A brief outline of the life of Fr. Maurice J. Dorney

Fr. Maurice J. Dorney

St. Gabriel’s Parish
Canaryville, Chicago, IL

1846 – John Dorney emigrates from Tipperary, Ireland to Troy, NY, where he meets and marries Mary Toomey
1851 – Maurice Dorney is born in Springfield, Mass.
1855 – Appears in Chicago city census of schoolchildren (Lived near Cottage Grove & 25th St.) Attends Mosely elementary school, and St. Patrick’s Academy at Adams & Desplaines in Chicago.
186? – Enrolls at University of St. Mary of the Lake
1867 – Enrolls at Our Lady of Angels Seminary, Niagara, NY
1870 – Graduates from Catholic Theological Seminary in Baltimore, MD
1874 – Priesthood conferred at St. James Parish on Prairie Ave. Starts out at St. John the Evangelist Parish, where he assists with rebuilding efforts after the great fire of ’71. Gets transferred to St. Dennis Parish in Lockport, IL to support Irish workers on the Illinois and Michigan canal construction.
1880 – Moves into temporary “Transit House” lodging in Canaryville near the Stockyards, and commissions Burnham and Root to build St. Gabriel’s Parish
1881- Became president of the Land League of Illnois, supporting Home Rule causes in Ireland
1881 – Attends Clan Na Gael convention as a delegate
1883 – Attends Philadelphia Land League convention as the Illinois delegate
1887 – Successfully defends Charles Stewart Parnell against murder and terrorism charges in Ireland by Richard Pigott
1888 – Creates a plan to restrict taverns to non-residential streets in Canaryville
1889 – Testifies for Alexander Sullivan, who is charged in the murder of Dr. Patrick Cronin, both members of Clan Na Gael in Chicago
1889 – A Chicago Tribune editorial suggests that Dorney be sent away to a country parish where he might cause less trouble
1896 – Temperance speech at Annunciation Church
1901 – Earns a law degree
1906 – Speaks at the Golden Jubilee celebration for alumni of the University of Niagara
1911 – Writes “The Unruly Boy” about urban education
1914 – Dies, mass said by Archbishop Quiqley, and eulogized by Rev. P.J. Muldoon. Now buried in a mausoleum in Mt. Olivet cemetery in Chicago.

(This page will be corrected and updated as I learn more. Your comments and corrections are appreciated).

John E. corrigan - Grace.

Working on Dorney biography. A few items for your chronology. I think Longhur refers to Lough Gur which is 13 miles from Limerick city. There is no Longhur in Irish list of places. He attended Niagara from Sept 1867-June 1870. Maybe earned an A B in 1869. 1869-1870 he took one year moral philosophy course and won the second premium. He took letters to Parnell in July 1888 shortly after the new church dedicated. More, if you’d like.

JohnMay 29, 2014 – 1:35 pm

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