Library Celebrates ‘The Quiet Man’

To mark the 60th anniversary of the release of the 1952 film, “The Quiet Man,” two special events are planned at the Ohio County Public Library in Wheeling this month.

The library’s Lunch With Books program, in partnership with Oglebay Institute’s Towngate Theatre, will present a reading of the “pub version” of the play, “The Quiet Man,” adapted for the stage by Frank Mahon. The staged reading will take place in the library’s auditorium at 7 p.m. Thursday Aug. 30.

Admission is being charged for the pub-style reading. Sean Duffy, coordinator of adult programing at the library, said that 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit Harmony House Children’s Advocacy Center. Harmony House provides vital services to area children through its offices in Wheeling and St. Clairsville.

To purchase tickets for the Aug. 30 fundraiser, send an email message to or call the library at 304-232-0244 and ask for Duffy.

A cast of seven actors from Towngate Theatre will read the play. The cast will include Vince Marshall, Rachel Thompson, Michael Ramsay, Tom Stobart, P.D. Gregg, Arlene Merryman, Greg Sberna and Tim Thompson.

The evening event will include music by Matt Smith and Erin Huffman of the local Irish band, Black Slaney; Irish-style “pub grub” and “some rousing surprises,” Duffy promised.

Duffy explained that there are three versions of “The Quiet Man” in fiction, film and play. The versions “are very different, and the differences are intriguing,” he remarked.

To explore those differences, a discussion will be offered in the library’s auditorium at noon Friday, Aug. 31. John Whitehead, who teaches film studies at Wheeling Jesuit University, will lead the discussion of “The Quiet Man” in all its forms: from the real history of 1921 Ireland to a 1933 short story by Maurice Walsh, to the 1952 film and Mahon’s new play.

Duffy said “The Quiet Man” play has been well received by audiences and critics in Mahon’s hometown of Chicago and across the country.

Both the film and the new play were based on Irish writer Walsh’s short story which was published in The Saturday Evening Post in 1933. The 1952 film, directed by John Ford, starred John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara.

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On another literary note, poet Brandon Dean Lamson, a new member of the faculty at Bethany College, has won the 2012 Juniper Prize for Poetry, awarded by the University of Massachusetts Press.

Officials of the academic press stated that Lamson’s poetry collection,”Starship Tahiti,” will be published in 2013.

Lamson will be joining the Bethany College faculty this fall as an assistant professor of English. Most recently, he lived in Houston, Texas, where he served as a visiting assistant professor at the University of Houston.

The poet is a 2010 graduate of the University of Houston’s creative writing program, where he completed a doctorate in creative writing and literature.

According to a biographical sketch released by the University of Massachusetts Press, Lamson is the author of a chapbook of poems, “Houston Gothic,” and his work is forthcoming in an anthology titled “Poets for Living Waters: An International Response to the BP Oil Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.” The anthology is slated for publication in 2013. Lamson’s poems also have appeared in many journals.

Linda Comins can be reached via e-mail at: