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Mr. Dooley in Peace and in War   By: (1867-1936)

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Boston Small, Maynard & Company 1899

Copyright, 1898, by the Chicago Journal Copyright, 1898, by Small, Maynard & Company

First Edition (10,000 copies) November, 1898 Second Edition (10,000 copies) December, 1898 Third Edition (10,000 copies) January, 1899

Press of George H. Ellis, Boston, U.S.A.



Archey Road stretches back for many miles from the heart of an ugly city to the cabbage gardens that gave the maker of the seal his opportunity to call the city "urbs in horto." Somewhere between the two that is to say, forninst th' gas house and beyant Healey's slough and not far from the polis station lives Martin Dooley, doctor of philosophy.

There was a time when Archey Road was purely Irish. But the Huns, turned back from the Adriatic and the stock yards and overrunning Archey Road, have nearly exhausted the original population, not driven them out as they drove out less vigorous races, with thick clubs and short spears, but edged them out with the more biting weapons of modern civilization, overworked and under eaten them into more languid surroundings remote from the tanks of the gas house and the blast furnaces of the rolling mill.

But Mr. Dooley remains, and enough remain with him to save the Archey Road. In this community you can hear all the various accents of Ireland, from the awkward brogue of the "far downer" to the mild and aisy Elizabethan English of the southern Irishman, and all the exquisite variations to be heard between Armagh and Bantry Bay, with the difference that would naturally arise from substituting cinders and sulphuretted hydrogen for soft misty air and peat smoke. Here also you can see the wakes and christenings, the marriages and funerals, and the other fêtes of the ol' counthry somewhat modified and darkened by American usage. The Banshee has been heard many times in Archey Road. On the eve of All Saints' Day it is well known that here alone the pookies play thricks in cabbage gardens. In 1893 it was reported that Malachi Dempsey was called "by the other people," and disappeared west of the tracks, and never came back.

A simple people! "Simple, says ye!" remarked Mr. Dooley. "Simple like th' air or th' deep sea. Not complicated like a watch that stops whin th' shoot iv clothes ye got it with wears out. Whin Father Butler wr rote a book he niver finished, he said simplicity was not wearin' all ye had on ye'er shirt front, like a tin horn gambler with his di'mon' stud. An' 'tis so."

The barbarians around them are moderately but firmly governed, encouraged to passionate votings for the ruling race, but restrained from the immoral pursuit of office.

The most generous, thoughtful, honest, and chaste people in the world are these friends of Mr. Dooley, knowing and innocent; moral, but giving no heed at all to patented political moralities.

Among them lives and prospers the traveller, arch├Žologist, historian, social observer, saloon keeper, economist, and philosopher, who has not been out of the ward for twenty five years "but twict." He reads the newspapers with solemn care, heartily hates them, and accepts all they print for the sake of drowning Hennessy's rising protests against his logic. From the cool heights of life in the Archey Road, uninterrupted by the jarring noises of crickets and cows, he observes the passing show, and meditates thereon. His impressions are transferred to the desensitized plate of Mr. Hennessy's mind, where they can do no harm.

"There's no betther place to see what's goin' on thin the Ar rchey Road," says Mr. Dooley. "Whin th' ilicthric cars is hummin' down th' sthreet an' th' blast goin' sthrong at th' mills, th' noise is that gr reat ye can't think."

He is opulent in good advice, as becomes a man of his station; for he has mastered most of the obstacles in a business career, and by leading a prudent and temperate life has established himself so well that he owns his own house and furniture, and is only slightly behind on his license... Continue reading book >>

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