acceptance can be ascertained in the fact that no less a clerical personage than John Cardinal Glennan of St. Louis was the organization's national chaplain.
It was pretty much a case of what the bishops didn't know would never hurt them. The Clan na Gael was, of course, as dedicated to the cause of Irish freedom as were the Fenians and its members had no intention of abandoning the fight, no matter what the American bishops might say. When they were declared anathema by the Church hierarchy, Clan na Gael members simply infiltrated the ranks of the Hibernians and held great sway within that organization Perhaps infiltrate is not the correct word, for the Clan na Gaelers were welcomed with knowing nods, if not open arms.
Irishtown: 1870's and 1880's
Yet another factor involved in the slow political development of the Irish here, and a Very important one, is that most of the men and women who resided in the Irish ghetto were primarily concerned with bettering themselves materially, and thus were pursuing jobs with a little more concreteness to them. It must be remembered that the Irish in Cleveland really didn't begin to make their collective climb until the 1870's and 1880's, when they began to move out of the rrills and warehouses for better positions.
This period saw them become streetcar operators, independent haulers and, of course, members of the city's safety forces in disproportionate numbers. The quickest-witted and more ambitious members of the Irish community sought white-collar work as soon as they mastered their numbers and learned to read and write. It is interesting to note that Irish women here were among the first of their sex to land jobs as clerks. During the 1890's they actually outnumbered their male counterparts.
The Irish women were to play another role in the community of business and finance that Was noteworthy. After a torturously slow acceptance as worthy workers during the 1860's, they became much sought after as house servants In the mansions of the wealthy. In the 1870's, Euclid Avenue ranked with the most beautiful streets in the world and the label "Millionaires' Row" was one justly deserved. Along what is now between East 9th Street and East 40th Street, the rich built their massive homes, and in almost every one of those show places, Irish girls and women were serving, as they put it, "the Swells."
Irish women were favored because they were quick to learn the ways of their "betters" and were passably to scrupulously clean. They were also generally loyal to the family they served and no threat to the lady of the house. They had learned their catechisms well and were tigresses when it came to upholding their chastity. Liasons with the men of the household were the extreme exception and not the rule. These women became maids, .....(continued next page)