Re: Irish insults against native-born
Generally, my research in the ACW deals with immigrants (German and Irish), and I did some considerable research on the pre-Know Nothing era (Mexican War specifically) when I wrote my undergrad thesis on German immigrants in the Mexican War.
It is odd to say, but I came across all but no names/insults towards the native-born from the immigrants. Granted this doesn't mean it didn't exist. The Germans probably had something in their vernacular, just as the Irish did in their Gaelic. What was it though? "American", "Native", and even "Know Nothing" probably were used as insults by the immigrants, but as Mr. Trent says "What else?"
One Scottish immigrant, George Ballantine, who enlisted in the Regular Army wrote that the natives were, "tyrannical", "foolish", and "ignorant." One German, Alexander Konze called the native officers, "Our warthy superiors"; but did he mean "worthy" or "swarthy"? He did insult native American miltary prowess later on in his writings, and even later he recounted that he was humiliated to stand next to "backwoodsmen" in the ranks. This doesn't appear too insulting though?!
Prior to the the execution of the San Patricios before Chapultepec one Irishman asked for the Colonel of the detail to light his clay pipe by "your elegant red hair." This seemed to bother the officer who proceeded to bash the Irishman in the face with his saber hilt. The Irishman yelled out "Bad luck to you! You've spoiled my smoking entirely!" Minutes later 30 San Patricios danced the hangman's jig...
If we could read the local immigrant newspapers then there would probably have some light on the subject of insults to the native-born. Details of specific riots in cities may show light as well. What arguments and words were exchanged between the real Dead Rabbits and Bowery Boys on July 4th 1857? Either way, the ultimate insult would be an exchange of brickbats or street pavers.
Matthew B. Bursig
52nd New York Regt. "German Rangers",
& The Daybreak B'hoys Mess
Researching the Life and Times of the 20th NYSV Regt. The "United Turner Rifles"