Joseph J. Costello

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Joseph J. Costello (1892 – 21 April 1960) was the longest serving Mayor of Galway.

Galway Urban Council was abolished in 1937 and the Mayoralty reintroduced with the election of Joseph J. Costello on 9 December 1937. The last Mayor, Edmond Blake, held office until 1841 when the position was dissolved.

Costello would become not only the first of the new town Mayors; his is to date the longest serving, his term of office lasting from 1937 to 29 September 1950. During his term of office he granted the Freedom of Galway to Douglas Hyde and Éamon de Valera, set up the 'Mayor's Fuel Fund' to help provide fuel for needy families through the winter. He oversaw the return of the body of William Butler Yeats to Galway on its way to reburial in Sligo, in 1949.

Events which occurred during his Mayoralty included:

  • the sinking of the Athenia off Galway, just ten hours after the outbreack of World War II in 1939.
  • the crash-landing of the Damyankee on 16 September 1944

He was a native of the town, by profession a chemist and first entered public life when elected to the Galway Urban Council in 1924. He was married to Mai Kennedy and had children Joseph, Kathleen and Sheila. He is buried in New Cemetery, Bohermore.


  • Henry, William (2002). Role of Honour: The Mayors of Galway City 1485-2001. Galway: Galway City Council. OCLC 51023721 ASIN B003NECRYW

External links[edit]

Civic offices
Preceded by
Office re-created
Mayor of Galway
Succeeded by
Michael O'Flaherty