Meehan, Thomas Francis

views updated


Historiographer, chiefly of the Catholic Church in the U.S., editor; b. of Irish immigrant parents, Patrick J. and Mary Jane (Butler) Meehan, Brooklyn, N.Y., Sept. 19, 1854; d. New York City, July 7, 1942. He received his B.A. in 1873 and his M.A. in 1874 from the College of St. Francis Xavier, New York City. His father, who owned the Irish American, appointed Thomas its managing editor (18741904). He was also New York correspondent for several papers and was on the staff of the New York Herald (189496). He was assistant managing editor of the Catholic Encyclopedia (190608), contributing more than 100 articles to it. From 1909 to his death he was on the editorial staff of America. He also wrote for the Encyclopedia Americana, the North American Review, the Catholic World, the Commonweal, and other magazines and newspapers. As early as 1899 he had contributed articles to the Records and Studies published by the United States Catholic Historical Society and in 1905 became collaborator with Charles G. herbermann, president and editor of the society, when the latter's sight began to fail. When Herbermann died in 1916, Meehan became editor and continued in this capacity until his death. He was editor of and contributor to Catholic Builders of the Nation (Boston 1925). Pius XI named him a knight of St. Gregory, May 17, 1931, and Fordham University, New York City, honored him with the LL.D. during its centenary year (1941).

[b. l. lee]