Butte (Mont.) Irish Collection, 1882-1935  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Creator
American Association for the Recogition of the Irish RepublicAncient Order of HiberniansGaelic League of AmericaIrsh Volunteers of AmericaPatrick Pearse Club (Butte, Mont.)Robert Emmet Literary Association (Butte, Mont.)Sunburst Club (Helena, Mont.)Thomas Francis Meagher Memorial Fund
Title
Butte (Mont.) Irish Collection
Dates
1882-1935 (inclusive)
Quantity
13 reels microfilm
Collection Number
Mss 112 (collection)
Summary
This collection contains membership, financial, organization, and correspondence records from 1882 to 1935 of many social, literary, and fraternal organizations for the Irish in Butte, Montana. Organizations include the Ancient Order of Hibernians (Divisions 1, 2, and 3), Robert Emmet Literary Association, Friends of Irish Freedom, Gaelic League, Irish Volunteers of America, Thomas Francis Meagher Memorial Fund, American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic, and Sunburst Club in Helena.
Repository
University of Montana, Mansfield Library, Archives and Special Collections
Archives and Special Collections
Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library
University of Montana
32 Campus Dr. #9936
59812-9936
Missoula, MT
Telephone: 406-243-2053
Fax: 406-243-4067
library.archives@umontana.edu
Access Restrictions

Researchers must use collection in accordance with the policies of Archives and Special Collections, the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, and The University of Montana--Missoula.

Languages
English
Sponsor
Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.


Historical NoteReturn to Top

The Ancient Order of Hibernians was formed during the sixteenth century in Ireland and three divisions were first organized in Butte in 1880. Its membership was limited to men who were born in Ireland and their sons. The A.O.H. was a strictly Catholic organization. Although loyal to the fight for Irish Independence, the A.O.H. was less revolutionary than many of the other organizations.

The Robert Emmet Literary Association was the Butte Branch of the Clan-na-Gael, a revolutionary organization devoted to the fight for Irish independence. The Clan-na-Gael was the American counterpart to the Irish Republican Brotherhood, which was located in Ireland. The R.E.L.A. was organized in Butte in 1881. This organization was steeped in secrecy, including keeping its members and officers secret. R.E.L.A. membership was open to all Irish-born, no matter what religious beliefs they held. The group prided itself on being a non-denominational organization. In 1905, Butte's R.E.L.A. was the second largest Clan-na-Gael in the United States.

Also found in the collection are records from the Patrick Pearse Club (the Butte branch) of the Friends of Irish Freedom. This organization was inspired by the Clan-na-Gael, however, the F.O.I.F. was a public group. Also unlike the Clan-na-Gael and the A.O.H., women were allowed to be members. The Friends of Irish Freedom were bitter rivals, nationally, of another organization found in this collection, the American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic. However, in Butte both groups worked well together in their support of Irish independence from the British. The Gaelic League was formed to educate American-born Irish about the Irish culture, focusing on the language, music, and dance. The Irish Volunteers were the "military arm" of the R.E.L.A.; they were the rifle company of the R.E.L.A. Although no information regarding the history of the Sunburst Club in Helena, Montana was found, it appears from the minutes in the collection that they were associated with the R.E.L.A. and the Clan-na-Gael. Both A.O.H. and R.E.L.A. members helped sponsor the Thomas Francis Meagher Memorial Fund, which was set up to erect a statue of Meagher in Helena. Meagher was an rebel who was exiled from Ireland and came to America. Here, he became a Civil War hero and was territorial governor of Montana.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This collection contains membership, financial, organization, and correspondence records from 1882 to 1935 of the A.O.H. (Divisions 1, 2, and 3), R.E.L.A, F.I.O.F., Gaelic League, Irish Volunteers of America, Thomas Francis Meagher Memorial Fund, American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic, and Sunburst Club in Helena.

The correspondence records contain communications between various members, the National A.O.H., the Ladies' Auxiliary Ancient Order of Hibernians, and many other Butte organizations. Members of the A.O.H. include the first four presidents of the Amalgamated (Anaconda) Copper Mining Company: Marcus Daly, John D. Ryan, Cornelius (Con) Kelley, and William Scallon. Because the members and officers of the R.E.L.A. were kept secret, each was assigned a number that was used to refer to the member in the minutes of every meeting. Like the R.E.L.A., members of the Sunburst Club are also referred to by number. The minutes from the first Sunburst Club meeting contain the names of original members and their corresponding numbers. This collection does contain some lists of R.E.L.A. members, along with their corresponding numbers. Documented members of the secret R.E.L.A. include long-time Butte judge, Jeremiah Lynch, (who also founded the Patrick Pearse Club of the Irish Volunteers) and Con Kelley and William Scallon (presidents of the Anaconda Company). Out of the other two of the first four presidents of the Anaconda Company, John D. Ryan was rumored to have been a member (never documented) and Marcus Daly was proposed for membership but never officially joined. The fact that these powerful men in the community were of Irish heritage and belonged to Irish organizations should not go un-noted. It shows the overwhelming preference of Irish in Butte.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Researchers are responsible for using in accordance with 17 U.S.C. and any other applicable statutes. Copyright not transferred to The University of Montana.

Preferred Citation

[Name of document or photograph number], Butte Irish Collection, Archives and Special Collections, Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, The University of Montana--Missoula.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Series I:  General Correspondence , 1903-1929Return to Top

2 reels, Butte-Silver Bow (BSB) Boxes 4-6

This series contains correspondence between divisions of the Ancient Order of Hibernians on both a local (Butte) and a national level. There is also correspondence between other organizations, such as the Robert Emmet Literary Association, the Ladies' Auxiliary Ancient Order of Hibernians, and various other local organizations.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
1/1
(Box 6) Butte (local)
1903-1934
1/133
Butte (local), undated
1/139
Montana (statewide)
1894-1928
1/223
Montana (statewide), undated
1/224
National and International
1907-1929
2/1
(Boxes 4-6) National and International (continued)
1907-1929

Series II:  Ancient Order of Hibernians , 1896-1932Return to Top

4 reels, BSB Boxes 1-6, Volumes

This series contains minutes of meetings of Divisions One and Three of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in Butte, MT. Also included are minutes of meetings of the board of trustees of Hibernia Hall, which was co-owned by the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the Robert Emmet Literary Association.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
2/54
(Boxes 4-6) Minutes
1911-1916
4/1
(Volumes) Division #1
Sept. 17, 1884 - June 1, 1892
4/157
Division #1
July 6, 1892 - Nov. 14, 1900
4/404
Division #1
May 7, 1913; Apr. 27, 1927-May 4, 1932
4/483
Division #3
Jan. 14, 1911 - Apr. 13, 1916
5/1
(Boxes 1-4) Division #3
May 20, 1916 - July 7, 1917
5/29
County Board
Aug. 6, 1896; Dec. 27, 1903-Aug. 24, 1912
5/85
Board of Trustees, Hibernia Hall
July 17, 1894 - August, 1925
5/174
Hibernian Knights, Co. A
Jan. 13, 1894 -Feb. 21, 1897
10/1
(Volumes) Division #1
1900-1906
10/291
Division #3
1901-1911

Series III:  Conferences and Conventions , 1898-1948Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Boxes 4-6

Contained within this series are the proceedings of several conventions with the Ancient Order of Hibernians. Proceedings of the 1948 convention of the Ladies Auxiliary Ancient Order of Hibernians are also found in this series.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
2/63
(Boxes 4-6), Proceedings
1898
2/66
Proceedings
1906
2/109
Proceedings
1910
2/124
Proceedings
1916
2/162
Proceedings
June 21, 1921
2/164
Proceedings
Aug. 9-12, 1921
2/173
Proceedings
1923
2/176
Proceedings
1927
2/186
Proceedings, Ladies Auxiliary
1948

Series IV:  Robert Emmet Literary Association , 1884-1946Return to Top

5 reels, BSB Boxes 4-7, Volumes

This series contains financial records of the Robert Emmet Literary Association. These records include term reports, cash books, membership and dues ledgers, and roll books.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
2/221
(Boxes 4-6) Term Reports, Great Falls
1915-1919
2/231
Term Reports, Anaconda
1915-1920
2/246
Term Reports, Butte
1904-1946
2/382
End of R.E.L.A. Financial Records
8/15
(Box 7) Ledger
1883-1885
8/106
Ledger Index
undated
8/161
Cash Book
May 18, 1884 - Apr. 18, 1901
8/254
Day Book
Apr. 25, 1901 - Aug. 16, 1917
8/451
Membership and Dues Ledger
Feb., 1885 - Jan., 1887
8/494
Membership and Dues Ledger
May 1887 - Apr., 1895
8/578
Membership and Dues Ledger
1894-1898

Series V:  Ancient Order of Hibernians , 1891-1939Return to Top

5 reels, BSB Boxes 1-6

This series contains financial records of the Butte divisions of the Ancient Order of Hibernians. Quarterly, biennial, and annual treasury reports of the various divisions are found in this series. It also contains a Sickness and Death Report of its members and various other information concerned with this report. There are records of the per capita assesments, general assessments, and receipts of the secretaries and treasurers in this series. Like the R.E.L.A. financial reports, membership and dues ledgers and cash books are included. Information about the Board of Directors of Hibernia Hall and rent ledgers from the hall are found in the A.O.H. financial records.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
2/385
(Boxes 4-6) Treasurer's Report (Quarterly)
1922-1927
2/396
Quarterly Report
1894-1927
2/406
Annual Report
1916-1917
2/413
Biennial Report
1891-1896
2/421
Treasurer's Report (Quarterly)
1907, 1924
2/424
Quarterly Report
1923-1927
2/438
Annual Report
1921-1926
2/450
State per capita Assessment
1900-1930
2/455
Sickness and Death Report
2/456
Correspondence re: Sickness and Death Report
2/479
Death Report
2/506
Sickness Report
2/578
Doctor's Certificates
2/596
(Boxes 4-6) Certificates of Beneficiary
2/623
End of Sickness and Death Report
2/624
Board of Directors, Hibernia Hall
1908-1928
2/675
Secretary's Receipts
1912-1924
2/678
Treasurer's Receipts
1924-1939
2/682
General Assessments
1924-1939
2/685
Misc. financial records
2/725
End of A.O.H. Financial Records (on Reel 2)
5/191
(Boxes 1-4) General Journal
Apr. 27, 1900 - Jan. 19, 1906
5/237
Hibernia Hall Rent Ledger
July 31, 1894 - Dec. 31, 1911
5/326
Hibernia Hall Rent Ledger
Dec., 1922 - Dec., 1924
5/338
Cash Book
July 23, 1901 - Jan. 1, 1918
5/399
Day Book
July 5, 1893 - Mar. 27, 1895
5/432
Applications for Memberships
Jan. 30, 1907 - Apr., 1887
5/474
Membership and Dues Ledger
Apr. 1882 - Mar., 1887
5/522
Membership and Dues Ledger
1889-1892
5/545
Membership and Dues Ledger
Sept. 6, 1900 - Oct. 30, 1901
5/615
Membership and Dues Ledger
Oct., 1901 - Oct., 1902
6/1
(Box 4) Membership and Dues Ledger (continued)
Oct., 1901 - Oct., 1902
6/29
Membership and Dues Ledger
1913-1917
6/108
A.O.H. County Board, Ledger
1904-1918
10/554
(Boxes 1,2) Membership and Dues (pp. 72-73)
1917-1936
10/591
End of Reel 10
11/1
(Boxes 1,2) Membership and Dues
1917-1936

Series VI:  Reports , undatedReturn to Top

2 reels; BSB Boxes 4-6

Reports from Ancient Order of Hibernians and Robert Emmet Literary Association committees are found in this series.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
2/726
(Boxes 4-6) A.O.H. and R.E.L.A. Committees
3/1
(Box 4) A.O.H. and R.E.L.A. Committees (continued)
3/149
End of Reports

Series VII:  Organization , undatedReturn to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 4

Contained within this series are the constitutions and by-laws of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Robert Emmet Literary Association, and the Friends of Irish Freedom. It also includes membership applications to these organizations, along with transfers of memberships.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
3/150
(Box 4) Constitutions and By-Laws, Memberships
3/546
Transfers of Membership
3/577
Miscellaneous Membership
3/594
End of Organization

Series VIII:  Miscellaneous , undatedReturn to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 4

This series contains miscellaneous items regarding the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Robert Emmet Literary Association, and the Friends of Irish Freedom.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
3/679
(Box 4) End of Miscellaneous

Series IX:  Irish Volunteers of America , 1907-1915Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 8

Minutes from meetings of the Irish Volunteers of America, the military branch of the Robert Emmet Literary Association, can be found in this series. Also included is a roll call from a R.E.L.A. meeting in 1897.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
6/119
(Box 8) (also includes roll call R.E.L.A., 1897)
May 9, 1912 - Dec. 19, 1915
6/160
Dec. 22, 1907 - Apr. 5, 1908

Series X:  Irish Volunteers of America , 1909-1913Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 8

Located within this series are financial records from the Irish Volunteers of America. These records include a membership ledger and a ledger from the Fife and Drum Band.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
6/170
(Box 8) Membership Ledger
1909 (?)
6/181
Fife and Drum Band, Ledger
1912-1913

Series XI:   Irish Volunteers of America , 1913Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 8

This series contains rifle range scores from members of the Irish Volunteers of America.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
6/201
(Box 8) Rifle Range Scores
1913

Series XII:  Friends of Irish Freedom , 1916-1921Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 8

Constitutions and by-laws of the Friends of Irish Freedom are located in this series.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
6/204
(Box 8) Constitutions and By-Laws
1916, 1921

Series XIII:  American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic , 1921-1922Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 8

Miscellaneous papers from the American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic can be found in this series.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
6/211
(Box 8) Papers
1921-1922

Series XIV:  Robert Emmet Literary Association , 1882-1925Return to Top

5 reels

This series contains minutes from meetings of the Robert Emmet Literary Association.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
6/265
(Volumes)
March 16, 1882 - May 1, 1884
6/363
Feb. 18, 1892 - Sept. 22, 1898
6/548
(Volumes)
Sept. 29, 1898 - Apr. 3, 1902 (ends 1/11/1900)
7/1
(Volumes) (continued)
Sept. 29, 1898 - Apr. 3, 1902
7/130
Apr. 10, 1902 - Feb. 7, 1907
7/383
Jan. 6, 1916 - May 7, 1925 (ends 11/20/1924)
8/1
(Volumes) (continued)
Jan. 6, 1916 - May 7, 1925
11/313
(Volumes)
1886-1892
11/535
(pp. 204-205)
1907-1916
12/1
(pp. 206-207)
1907-1916

Series XV:  Sunburst Club, Helena-Camp 182, Minutes , 1896-1900Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 8

Minutes from the Sunburst Club-Camp 182 in Helena, Montana are found in this series. The minutes date back to the first meeting of the club on November 23, 1896.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
9/59
(Box 8)
Nov. 23, 1896 - Mar. 5, 1900

Series XVI:  Unidentified Organization, Financial Records , 1893-1902Return to Top

1 reel, BSB Box 8

Located in this series are financial records from unidentified organizations. No reference to any organization can be found on the documents. However, they do include a ledger and two day books from one or more Irish organizations in Butte.

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel/Frame
9/117
(Box 8) Day Book
Apr. 3, 1895 - June 25, 1902
9/300
Day Book
Nov. 23, 1893 - Dec. 12, 1896
9/309
Ledger
1893 - 1896

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Irish Americans--History, organization, etc.
  • Irish Americans--Societies, etc.
  • Irish Americans--Montana--Butte
  • Societies--Montana--Butte
  • Corporate Names :
  • American Association for the Recognition of the Irish Republic
  • Ancient Order of Hibernians
  • Friends of Irish Freedom
  • Irish Volunteers of America
  • Robert Emmet Literary Society