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Title: Sir John Gray, M.P.

Title of artwork:
Sir John Gray, M.P.
Paper (fiber material), Ink
Wood engraving
Grey, Charles Malcolm
O'Connell Centenary Committee
Title of Publication:
O'Connell centenary record
Joseph Dollard
Publication place:
Publication date:
Curator Comment:
The 'O’Connell Centenary Record' is a luxury bound illustrated volume that was produced to record the events organised to mark the centenary of the birth of Daniel O’Connell. The text includes a history of Ireland, a biography of O’Connell and an account of key political, social and cultural events in Ireland at that time. It included reports of meetings, resolutions of town-councils, letters from significant persons, copies of speeches and reviews of artistic events, in particular the creation of the O’Connell monument for the capital.
Note on artwork:
This is a wood engraved portrait of Sir John Gray (1815 –1875). It was engraved by the artist-engraver Charles Malcolm Grey, one of the few Irish artists who engraved his own designs. This image appears to be after a photograph. Gray had a far-reaching political career, he was elected an alderman of Dublin Corporation in 1852 and he served from the 1860s as a Member of Parliament for Kilkenny City. He was chairman of the Dublin Corporation Water Works Committee from 1863 to 1875 which secured a clean water supply for Dublin and its suburbs. In recognition of this work, Gray received a knighthood. A lifelong supporter of Daniel O’Connell, Gray, like Cardinal Paul Cullen, was highly critical of the revolutionary policies of the Fenians, and through his newspaper espoused the policies of Cullen’s National Association which called for reform of the land laws, free Catholic education and the disestablishment of the Anglican Church in Ireland. After his death in 1875, a carved statue of John Gray by Thomas Farrell was placed directly after the O’Connell monument, on O’Connell Street.

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