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Holyoke Remembers Mary Doyle Curran

DATE: Saturday, June 3, 2017

TIME: 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

LOCATION: Holyoke Public Library, 250 Chestnut St., Holyoke

ADMISSION: Free, including lunch

A Centennial Celebration of the author's birth

Holyoke Community College presents a one-day symposium on the life and literary works of Mary Doyle Curran, one of Holyoke's most distinguished authors, celebrating the centennial of her birth.

Tentative schedule:

9-9:30 Welcome, donuts and coffee

9:30-10:15 Keynote Address: Jules Chametzky, PhD, UMass Emeritus Professor of English

10:15-11 Robert Cox, Director —UMass Special Collections and University Archives

11-11:45: Mark Clinton,  PhD, Holyoke Community College, Professor of History: "Mary Doyle Curran's Holyoke Genealogy"

11:45-12:30: Lunch

12:30-1:30 Bus tour of Mary Doyle Curran's Holyoke

1:30-2:15: Joseph Loftus: "Lost in Eternity: Mary Doyle Curran's Holyoke Legacy"

2:15-3: Patricia Kennedy, Holyoke Community College, Professor of English: "Solitary and Bereft: The Role of Brightwood Orphanage in the Writings of Mary Doyle Curran"

3-4: Closing remarks and conversation

Event is free but advance registration requested. Lunch included.

Supported by grants from the Community College Public Humanities Center, MassHumanities, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

To register, please contact Patricia Kennedy, HCC professor of English, at

About Mary Doyle Curran: 

Doyle Curran, born in Holyoke in 1917, was part of the Irish American community that built the canals and worked the paper and textile mills of the "Paper City." She went on to graduate from the Massachusetts State College (UMass-Amherst) in 1940 and subsequently earned a PhD from the State University of Iowa. Doyle Curran was a professor of English at Wellesley College, and a professor of English and Irish Studies at Queens College, and the University of Massachusetts-Boston. In that capacity, and in her capacity as a writer, she gave an enduring voice to Holyoke's Irish American community and an inclusive legacy to a dynamic multicultural city of immigrants.