Famous People

In modern times Charles Dunn (1799 – 1872), was a notable judge in the U.S.A. and Colonel Humphrey O’Dunne was famous for his bravery in the attack on Savannah in 1774.

The Irish-American author Finlay Peter Dunn, created the humorous character “Mr. Dooley”, an Irish-American saloon keeper in Chicago. His Mr. Dooley books were published between 1898 and 1919.

Sir Patrick Dun (1642 – 1713), five times President of the Royal College of Physicians, Ireland and Irish M.P., whose memory is perpetuated in Sir Patrick Dun’s Hospital, Dublin, was of a Scottish family.”

Gillananaomh O Duinn was one of the earliest famous Dunnes; he was the chief poet and historian of Leinster in the mid 1100’s and came from Dooregan (Tinnahinch).

Mother Amadeus Dunne whose parents came from Laois founded the Ursulines in North America. She taught the Cheyenne Indians in Montana following the defeat of General Custer at the battle of the Little Big Horn.

Chief Justice Edmund Dunne, a brother of Mother Amadeus, was appointed Chief Justice of Arizona by President Grant. He set up a 50,000 acre Catholic colony in Florida and for his contribution to the church he was made a Papal Count in 1884. He took the title Count D’Oregan in memory of his ancestry. In fact he tried to prove that he was the lineal descendant of the old Gaelic Dunne chiefs and visited the area here during his trips to Europe.

Mary Chavalita Dunne was a famous author, playwright and linguist and she was a feminist long before the term was invented. She spoke seven languages fluently – Enoch Powell, the famous British politician also spoke seven languages fluently but it was said of him that he hadn’t anything intelligent to say in any of them! Not so with Mary Chavalita – she was a friend of Wilde and Shaw who didn’t suffer fools gladly.

Patrick Dunne, a Catholic priest from Daingean, was instrumental in organising 10 shiploads of Irish emigrants to Australia in 1862-1863. Back then we had major problems with poverty and evictions. People were also transported to Australia as convicts for the pettiest of crimes such as stealing food to feed the children. Thankfully we don’t have those problems today. One recent Irish emigrant to Australia was asked by the immigration official if he had a criminal record, to which he replied “I didn’t know it was still a requirement”!

Count James Bernard O’Dunne was a notable figure in the court of Louis XV and his son, Liet. – Colonel Humphrey O’Dunne fought in the American War of Independence. Their descendants now live in France and Switzerland.

Finley Peter Dunne became a world-renowned exponent of Irish-American satire. An example on the benefits of politics as a career “Ye have nawthin to worry ye; Whin ye’er hungry ye go to a bankit. Whin ye’re broke all ye have to do is to give something away that don’t belong to ye”. He was ahead of his time!

From Clonaslee we have the internationally known sports commentator Mick Dunne. His daughter Eileen is a regular newscaster on RTE.

Ben Dunne (born 3 March 1949, Cork) is an Irish entrepreneur. Former director of his family firm, Dunnes Stores, one of the largest chains of department stores in Ireland, he now owns a chain of fitness centres established by his company Barkisland Developments Limited since the mid nineties