A Yankee in de Valera's Ireland

The Memoir of David Gray

By David Gray

Edited by: Paul Bew

What follows is the raw material of history in the making. It must be winnowed, weighed and 'evaluated' before acceptance by the historian. -- David Gray, Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary to Ireland, 1940-47 ** Lawyer, soldier, journalist, and playwright, David Gray cuts an unlikely diplomatic figure. Born in Buffalo, New York in 1870, Gray took up the post of US Minister to Ireland in 1940. His memoir of that year, Behind the Emerald Curtain, is published here for the first time. Vivid, lyrical, forthright, and eviscerating, Gray reveals a life in a privileged milieu amid the darker currents of war, political discord, collaboration, and espionage. Diary entries, secret documents, press extracts, letters to Roosevelt, and conversations with his ideological opponent Eamon de Valera are knitted together in this intriguing narrative, introduced by editor Paul Bew. ***"....a truly remarkable man who lived in truly remarkable times....a fascinating read....highly recommended." - Midwest Book Review, Library Bookwatch, December 2012, The Biography Shelf. *** "David Gray is remembered in Irish history as the United States Minister to Ireland who fought with Eamon de Valera over Ireland's persistent neutrality during the Second World War... Gray concluded that Ireland's policy during the war was based on a cynical calculation of who could offer the Irish government the most effective process of reunification. Clearly, Irish policy was more complicated than that; among other things, neutrality during the war became equated with the Irish sense of sovereignty and independence. For Gray, and of course many others, the war was a great moral struggle of good against evil and in those circumstances neutrality had to have a sinister motive. This book explores these many troubling questions.~- Irish Literary Supplement, Spring 2015 [Subject: Memoir, History, Irish Studies, Politics, International Affairs, World War II Studies]

384 pages

Publication Date: 8/2/2012
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9781908996053