Catalog Archive
Auction 176, Lot 732

"[Philadelphia Riots, Immigration] The Truth Unveiled; or, a Calm and Impartial Exposition of the Origin and Immediate Cause of the Terrible Riots in Philadelphia, on May 6th, 7th and 8th, A.D. 1844",

Subject: Document - Philadelphia Riots, Immigration

Period: 1844 (published)


Color: Black & White

5.3 x 8.2 inches
13.5 x 20.8 cm
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The May 1844 riots against the Catholics in Philadelphia, and specifically Irish Catholics, resulted in at least 14 deaths, mostly by Protestants of the Nativist or “Know Nothing Party” who felt threatened by the increasing number of Irish immigrants. The writer says Philadelphia has been “disgraced by the recent terrible outrages” which included the burning of Catholic churches. He relates the story of the Sisters of Charity who came from Maryland to Philadelphia in 1832 to treat victims of the cholera epidemic. The city leaders expressed their gratitude and the nuns apparently stayed and continued their good works. The writer asks, “And how has this work of charity been repaid…The very retreat of these Sisters of Charity has been fired, and it now lies in ruins!” This pamphlet was apparently written and published shortly after the May riots because no mention is made of the July 1844 riots that had to be suppressed by the militia with even more deaths. Printed by M. Fithian, a "Protestant and Native Philadelphian," in Philadelphia. Octavo, disbound, 24 pages.


Condition: B+

Disbound with faint scattered foxing and a minor dampstain along the top edge of the pages.

Estimate: $180 - $220

Sold for: $90

Closed on 2/12/2020