John P. Gallagher, the junior member of the firm of Osborn & Gallagher, publishers of the Williamsburg Journal-Tribune,
is a native of York township. He was born on a prairie farm, his parents being John and Catharine Gallagher, natives
of Tyrone and Monaghan counties, Ireland They located in York township in 1859. There were nine children in the
Gallagher family and the subject of this sketch is a twin, his brother mate being G. P. Gallagher, who resides
on a farm within sight of the old homestead. The father of the twin boys died when the sons were yet in their teens
and they at once assumed the responsibilities of the three hundred and twenty acre farm, canceling its debt and
maintaining a home for their mother and sisters.
In 1888 John P. was appointed to the railway mail service, his first assignment being the run from Davenport to
Calmar; in 1890 he was transferred to the run from Marion, Iowa, to Kansas City, Missouri, and he spent eleven
years in this, resigning in 1901, when he became part owner of the newspaper with which he is still connected.
Mr. Gallagher never attended other than the district school, and this only in broken periods, but his studious
disposition has required but little aid; he has read good, wholesome literature, he has been a constant observer
of the leading plays and his deductions and conclusions always bear the stamp or seal of an originality redolent
of genius. As a writer his work at once attracts attention by the earnestness, force and fairness of his expressions.
He belongs to no political party in the sense that he must be ever ready to advocate its proclaimed tenets; he
regards the common or general good as of paramount importance and is bitterly opposed to the theory that the common
or general good is best sub-served or promoted by an unbending allegiance to any political party and his fondest
dream is that some day, some time, "all men's good shall be each man's rule," a policy not possible under
the cramped narrowness of the political organizations of today.
His editorial work covers a wide field and reflects marked literary ability as well as a refined taste. There is
dignity in his expressions, and, at times, his prose becomes poetry, rich in fancy, lofty in aim and clear in thought.
For the glib phrase and the slangy utterance he has nothing but a contempt that borders on hatred and his editorials
possess a permanent value.
He is a member of the Catholic church and is very well informed on her tenets and teachings, and his charity is
freely extended to those who refuse to study the church except through her enemies; he regards this disposition
as a malady, a disease, and inclines to the view that its only cure is in permitting the germs of the disorder
to become consumed in the fire of its own prejudice, when out of its ashes will spring a broader tolerance and
a brotherly or Christian spirit.
Mr. Gallagher is unmarried and resides with a sister. He seldom takes a vacation, is a firm believer in work, and
is proud of the fact that he never strayed far from his native soil.
History of Iowa County, Iowa
And its People
By: James C. Dinwiddie
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Iowa County, IA
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