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J. M. Kerrigan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

J.M. Kerrigan
J. M. Kerrigan in Undercover Agent.jpg
J.M. Kerrigan in Undercover Agent (1939)
James Michael Kerrigan

(1884-12-16)16 December 1884
Dublin, Ireland
Died29 April 1964(1964-04-29) (aged 79)
Resting placeHoly Cross Cemetery
Years active1907–1960

James Michael Kerrigan (16 December 1884 – 29 April 1964) was an Irish actor.

Early life

James Michael Kerrigan[1] was born on 16 December 1884 in Dublin, which was part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland at that time. He studied at Belvedere College and worked as a newspaperman.[2]


In 1907, Kerrigan joined the Abbey Players.[2] There he became a stalwart, appearing in plays by Lady Gregory, William Butler Yeats and John Millington Synge (for whom he played the role of Shawn Keogh in The Playboy of the Western World. His first screen appearance was in the 1916 silent film Food of Love. By the 1920s he was appearing on Broadway, often in plays by Shakespeare, Ibsen, and Sheridan.

He settled permanently in Hollywood in 1935, having been recruited along with several other Abbey performers to appear in John Ford's The Informer. In this film and in Ford's The Long Voyage Home, he plays similar roles, that of a leech who attaches himself to men until they run out of money. Perhaps his best known role was in The General Died at Dawn, where he plays a character named Leach. In it, he plays a sinister thief who, holding a gun on Cooper, says "I may be fat, but I'm agile."

He had little screen time in films which he starred as minor roles, such as the First Drayman in Merely Mary Ann (1931) with Janet Gaynor. One of his more recognizable roles was in Gone with the Wind (1939), in which he played John Gallegher, the seemly jovial mill owner who whips his convict labor in to "co-operation". He appeared in Walt Disney's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954), the film version of Jules Verne's novel in a minor role at the beginning of the film.

In 1946, he tried breaking into Broadway shows, playing the discombobulated leprechaun Jackeen J. O'Malley in the show Barnaby and Mr. O'Malley, based on the Crockett Johnson comic strip.

Kerrigan died in Hollywood on 29 April 1964, aged 79. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6621 Hollywood Blvd.

Partial filmography

Kerrigan with Sara Allgood in 1911
Kerrigan with Sara Allgood in 1911


  1. ^ Jones, Idwal (July 12, 1936). "Mr. Kerrigan's Vacation". The New York Times. p. X 4. ProQuest 101838952. Retrieved October 23, 2020 – via ProQuest.
  2. ^ a b "Kerrigan Has Never Seen Himself on the Screen". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. 25 February 1947. p. 19. Retrieved 23 October 2020 – via

External links

This page was last edited on 20 June 2021, at 20:36
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