Looking down his long nose at the emigrant, he addressed him in a pious, affected voice that was loud and filled with moral indignation: “Sir! By your language, I can tell that you are going to Hell! You are going to Hell!”
The tired Irishman thought for a moment about this judgmental admonition. Defiantly, he looked the clergyman squarely in the face and replied: “Well sir, that’s probably true because I look around and I can see that I’ve reached that particular destination.”
Then, after making a courtly bow, he gave the man in black a knowing wink and said: “And I’ve heard a lot about you — top-of-the-morning to you, Mr. Satan.”
Rick Holmes is the official town historian of Derry. His office hours at the Municipal Center are Mondays from 8 a.m. to noon and Wednesdays from 4 to 7 p.m. Several of his books on local history are available at Mack’s Apples and Derry’s libraries.