Hell-Roaring Mike Healy: American Catholic

His daddy was a poor Irish laborer. His mama was a Georgia slave. This meant the kids were legally slaves.

When the dad became a rich planter, he sent all his kids up north for their schooling. The boys went to Holy Cross College. The girls went up to Quebec.

His brothers became a bishop, a Jesuit president of Georgetown University, a businessman, and a seminary director. One of his sisters married, another joined a nursing order, and the third became a Mother Superior.

And Hell-Roaring Mike Healy?

He was the youngest, and he went to sea.

There he worked his way up to captain, and later became “the greatest man in America,” the man who guarded Alaska’s coasts for twenty years.

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