Auld Irishtown Characters & Histories

We are so glad you’ve made it here! This trilogy has so much to offer because not only is there a story to be told on the outside, but beneath the surface is where you’ll find the hidden secrets. The story of the characters IS the story of the histories. Click on the hyperlinks, and enjoy.

Eamon on stage

Author of the Auld Irishtown trilogy, Eamon Loingsigh reading at The Cell Theatre in Manhattan

There are many characters in Light of the Diddicoy and Exile on Bridge Street in the Auld Irishtown trilogy. It’s important to remember that only eight of the many characters mentioned here are fictional. All of the others are based on actual people, reinvented here in a fictional setting.

(Listen to: The Story of Irishtown)


William “Liam” or “Poe” Garrity – Narrator, teenage Irish immigrant

White Hand Gang Leadership:

Dinny Meehan – Gang leader

The Swede – Enforcer

Vincent Maher – Encorcer

Tommy Tuohey – Irish traveler, enforcer

Lumpy Gilchrist – Accountant

Mickey Kane – Dinny’s cousin


Dockbosses:Final Diddicoy cover

“Wild Bill” Lovett – Red Hook, old Jay Street Gang leader

James “Cinders” Connolly – Jay & Fulton street terminals

Harry “The Shiv” Reynolds – Atlantic Avenue Terminal

Cute Charlie Red Donnolly – Navy Yard

John Gibney “The Lark” – Baltic Street Terminal


Lonergan Crew:

Richie Lonergan – Leader

Abe Harms – German Jew, Richie’s righthandExile book cover

Petey Behan – Feuds with Liam Garrity

Matty Martin – Follower

Timothy Quilty – Follower


Black Hand:

Frankie Yale – Leader in Brooklyn

Jack & Sixto Stabile – Father & son owners of Adonis Social Club

Paul Vaccarelli – Old Five Points leader, ILA VP

Il Maschio – Yale’s man in Red Hook


International Longshoreman’s Association (ILA):

T.V. O’Connor – President

King Joe – VP, New York City

Thos Carmody – Recruiter

Joseph Garrity – Recruiter, uncle of Liam

Henry Browne – ILA leader in the Navy Yard


The Law:

William Brosnan – Officer, Poplar Street Station

Daniel Culkin – Patrolman, son-in-law of Brosnan

Ferris – Patrolman


Waterfront Assembly:

Jonathan G. Wolcott – President

Silverman – Muscle

Wisniewski – Muscle

Vandeleurs – Landlord


Other Gang Members:

Big Dick Morissey – Gibney’s righthand, muscle

Philip Large – Connolly’s righthand, Fool-mute

Paddy Keenan – bartender & Minister of Education

Dance Gillen – Half black, half Irish, King of the Pan Dance

Chisel McGuire – Craps King of Ballyhoo

Needles Ferry – Drug addict

Ragtime Howard – Dock Loaders’ Club stalwart

Dago Tom Montague – Half Italian, half Irish

Non Connors – Lovett’s righthand

Darby Leighton – Banished from White Hand Gang, Lovett follower

Pickles Leighton – In Sing Sing, framed by Dinny Meehan in 1913

Frankie Byrne – Lovett follower, old Frankie Byrne Gang leader

Jidge Seaman – Frankie Byrne/Lovett follower

Sean Healy – Frankie Byrne/Lovett follower

Garry Barry – Old Red Onion Gang leader, psychotic

James Hart – Truck driver

McGowan – Former righthand of Dinny Meehan, killed in Sing Sing by Pickles Leighton

Beat McGarry – Old timer, storyteller before William, after The Gas Drip Bard



Sadie Meehan (nee Leighton) – Wife of Dinny Meehan

Mary Lonergan – Mother of Richie Lonergan

Anna Lonergan – Sister of Richie Lonergan

Tanner Smith – Greenwich Village dockboss, Meehan associate

Joey Behan – Older brother of Petey Behan

James Quilty – Older brother of Tim Quilty (best friend of Joey Behan)

The Gas Drip Bard – Irishtown storyteller, Old timer

Dead Reilly – Gang lawyer

Thomas Burke – Lives below Liam

Christie Maroney – Bartender, gang leader of many gangs circa 1900-1912

Coohoo Cosgrave – Original leader of White Hand Gang

Father Larkin – Priest at St. Ann’s Roman Catholic Church

Other Gang Members:

Mick Gilligan – Low end White Hand follower

Eddie Hughes – White Hand Gang member

Freddie Cuneen – White Hand Gang member

Joseph Flynn – Drunkard, childhood friend of Lovett’s, WWI soldier

Johnny Mullen – White Hand Gang member, WWI soldier

Happy Maloney – White Hand Gang member, WWI soldier

Quiet Higgins – White Hand Gang member, WWI soldier

Gimpy Kafferty – White Hand Gang member, WWI soldier

Fred Honeybeck – White Hand Gang member, WWI soldier

The Simpson brothers, Whitey & Baron – Gang members, WWI soldiers


Obscures and Extras:

Mr. Lynch – Greenwich Village saloon owner, Hibernian societies

Mrs. McGowan – Mother of dead gang member McGowan

Emma McGowan – Sister of McGowan

Rose Leighton – Sadie’s mother

Frank Leighton – Oldest Leighton brother, manager at Kirkman Soap Factory

Tiny Thomas Lonergan – Lonergan child

Ms. Gilligan – wife of Mick Gilligan

Sammy de Angelo – Italian hit man

Seamus “Red Shay” Meehan – Dinny’s uncle

Lefty & Costello – Two followers of Tanner Smith

James Cleary – Garry Barry follower


About eamonblog

I am Eamon Loingsigh, author of the Auld Irishtown trilogy. The first book in the trilogy is "Light of the Diddicoy," (Three Rooms Press 2014). The second is "Exile on Bridge Street," (Three Rooms Press 2016). This blog is mostly concerned with the books and the history of Brooklyn, the Irish-Americans and the gangs of Brooklyn and New York. I have also written lots of other stuff, namely two other books, the first called, "An Affair of Concoctions" and the book of poetry, "Love and Maladies." There are also articles sprinkled around the internet about anything from the anarchist movement of the Spanish Civil War to the French Symbolists of late 1800s Paris to the Irish Famine. With a degree in journalism and a passion for writing, there are lots of topics I have covered. To get in touch, send an email to: Oh by the way, my last name is pronounced "Lynch." Eamon Loingsigh
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