It's vintage New York politics: a "boy mayor," elected at age 27... the first Irish-Catholic in the office... ties to radical Irish independence movement Sinn Fein... rumors of collaboration with World War I Germany... pay-to-play scandals... petition for ouster by the Attorney General... all that, plus the Kennedy name, before it was a "name." Three-term Syracuse mayor James Kennedy McGuire lived from 1868 to 1923, ran a political machine at the turn of the last century, aspired to become governor of New York, and extended his reach beyond America's borders to support Irish nationalism in his ancestral land.
Professor Daniel Schultz, who teaches history at Cayuga Community College, is researching and writing a biography of McGuire. He will present highlights from his work in progress in a talk titled "The Political Lives of James K. McGuire" at the college's Auburn campus library on Friday, March 19, from 11:00 a.m. to noon. The presentation is free and open to the public.