Jack Reagan

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Jack Reagan
Jack Reagan.jpg
John Edward Reagan

(1883-07-13)July 13, 1883
DiedMay 18, 1941(1941-05-18) (aged 57)
Resting placeCalvary Cemetery, East Los Angeles
Political partyDemocratic
(m. 1904)

John Edward Reagan (July 13, 1883 – May 18, 1941) was the father of Ronald Reagan, motion picture actor, who served as the 33rd governor of California and 40th president of the United States and radio station manager Neil Reagan.


Jack's paternal grandfather, Michael O'Regan, was a native of County Tipperary, Ireland. O'Regan worked as a tenant farmer during his early years in Ireland, before he moved to London in 1852. Whilst living there, O'Regan married an Irish refugee named Catherine Mulcahey, and anglicised his family surname to "Reagan". The couple emigrated to Carroll County, Illinois in 1856.[1] John Michael, their son, became a grain-elevator farmer, and married Jenny Cusick in 1878. Cusick was born in Canada, but like John Michael, her parents came from Ireland. Their son, John Edward "Jack", was born five years later.[2]

8. Thomas O'Regan
4. Michael O'Regan (Reagan)
9. Margaret Murphy
2. John Michael Reagan
10. Patrick Mulcahey
5. Catherine Mulcahey
1. John Edward "Jack" Reagan[3]
12. Patrick Thomas Cusick
6. Patrick Cusick
13. Jean Gabbert
3. Jennie Cusick
7. Sarah Higgins

Life and career[edit]

At the time of his second son Ronald's birth in 1911, Jack was working at a store in Tampico, Illinois. He went on to work as a traveling salesman during Ronald's childhood. Politically, he was a populist Democrat, supporting economically progressive policies such as financial support for the working poor, trust-busting, child labor laws, a minimum wage, and progressive taxation. From his Irish heritage he inherited a dislike of the British Empire. He was a keen supporter of the United States' involvement in World War I and attempted to enlist. He was strongly opposed to the Ku Klux Klan due to his Catholic heritage, but also due to the Klan's anti-semitism and anti-black racism.[4]

He died on May 19, 1941, at the age of 57 after a series of heart attacks.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gullan (2001), p. 320
  2. ^ The New Yorker, Volume 57, Issues 37-41, 1981, p. 45
  3. ^ Reitwiesner, William Addams and Michael J. Wood. "The Ancestors of Ronald Reagan". Retrieved 2008-04-16.
  4. ^ Vaughn, Stephen (1992). "Ronald Reagan and the Struggle for Black Dignity in Cinema". The Journal of Negro History. 77 (1): 1–16.