Irish-American Interior Design: Photo Prints

I’d like to suggest a decorating option that I work with every day: historical photographs. I work at a historical society just now, and part of my job involves tracking down images of old Omaha for people. Almost every historical society offers this service, as do many newspaper archives, often at relatively low prices. There are a few ways to approach this: You might collect photos around a certain theme, such as St. Patrick’s Day; you might collect photos based on a certain location, such as your home town; you might collect photos just based on whatever catches your fancy. I have a few photo suggestions to offer, and they are just what I fancy.

1. John McCormick and Bob Sweeney dancing behind MacCafferty’s, Grand Avenue, St. Paul., from the Minnesota Historical Society.


2. New York, New York. Irish-American bartender serving beer to British sailors in a Third Avenue bar in the “Forties,” Library of Congress.


3. Tim Crimmins, 149 Rodney Court, dances an Irish jig in costume. Born in County Cork, Ireland, Crimmins immigrated to United States at age 15, Wisconsin Historical Society.


4. “Irish” Jack Doyle, Wrestle, the Durham Museum.

5. McCarthy and Wife, Champion Irish jig dancers posed in Irish dress, New York Public Library.


6. Bergin’s Irish coffee, 1979, Los Angeles Public Library.



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Max Sparber

Max Sparber is a playwright, journalist, and history detective in Omaha, Nebraska.