Saturday 18 November 2017

Stories flow freely in new book on famous city pub Mulligans


Mulligan's Book
Mulligan's Book
Mulligan's with author Declan Dunne outside
Declan Dunne in Mulligan's with Eileen Dunne

Few pubs in the world can match the colourful history of Dublin's Mulligan's of Poolbeg Street - and a new book will bolster its envied reputation.

RTE journalist Declan Dunne was delighted when news anchorwoman Eileen Dunne, his friend and colleague, agreed to formally launch his new book in the busy city centre pub yesterday.

"This pub is drenched in history over the past 233 years. Its famous customers included James Joyce, Judy Garland and US president John F Kennedy," said the author.

James Joyce featured the pub in his famous short story Counterparts.

John F Kennedy was a US Congressman when he drank a pint there with Irish Press journalist Jack Grealish in 1947.

The pub was regarded as a branch office of the Irish Press group - which was located next door - until its closure 20 years ago. Legions of top journalists, including the legendary sports writer Con Houlihan, spent many a long hour on its premises.


"Hollywood star Judy Garland played cards and drank in the pub every night for a week when she was starring in a show at the Theatre Royal across the street in 1951," said the writer.

Among the many quirky tales recounted in Mulligan's: Grand Old Pub of Poolbeg Street, published by Mercier Press, is that of Billy Brooks Carr, a Texan who made the pub his base on each visit to Ireland.

Brooks died in 2011 and his ashes are stored in the grandfather clock in the pub.

"A framed picture of President Kennedy hangs beside the clock. Billy actually met President Kennedy when he was a boy of 13 in Houston on the day before the president was assassinated in Dallas," said Mr Dunne.

Eileen Dunne said it was "hard to beat the buzz" of an Irish pub, although she usually busy most nights presenting the news.

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