Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Alexander Martin Sullivan

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Catholic Encyclopedia (1913), Volume 14
Alexander Martin Sullivan

by William Henry Grattan Flood


Irish politician, lawyer and journalist, b. at Bantry in 1830; d. at Dartry Lodge, Rathmines, Dublin, 17 Oct., 1884. He received his early education in his native town. Drifting into journalism in 1850, he became assistant-editor of the "Nation" in 1855, and subsequently editor and proprietor. In 1861 he married Frances, daughter of John Donovan of New Orleans. From 1861 to1884, in conjunction with his elder brother, T.D.Sullivan (still living), he made the "Nation" one of the most potent factors in the cause of true nationality, and also issued the "Weekly News" and "Zozimus". In 1874 he was elected M.P. for Louth, and was afterwards M.P. for Meath. Called to the Irish bar in 1876, he was made Q.C. in 1881. As a member of the Dublin Corporation he secured a magnificent site for the Grattan Monument, towards which he generously gave £400, the amount of a subscription by his admirers while he was undergoing imprisonment for a political offence in 1868. This monument was formally unveiled, January 1876. Between the years 1878 and 1882 he was engaged in many notable trials. His last great case was on 30 November, 1883 when he was colleague of Lord Russell of Killowen in the defence of Patrick O'Donnell for the murder of James Carey, the Irish Informer. He was buried at Glasnevin. In addition to his labours Alexander Sullivan was a great temperance reformer. He also wrote two notable books, "The Story of Ireland" and "New Ireland" and contributed many sketches (including some verse) to "Irish Penny Readings" (1879-85). MACDONAGH in Dict. Nat. Biog. s.v.; private correspondence; family papers.

W. H. Grattan-Flood.