Author, Daniel Boyne, explores the life of patriarch John B. Kelly Sr.
In Philadelphia, the Kelly name invariably telegraphs Grace, movie icon-turned-princess, or John B. Jr., city councilman-turned-gadfly. But in the new coffee-table tome Kelly: A Father, A Son, An American Quest (Mystic Seaport Museum; $34.95), author Daniel Boyne explores the life of patriarch John B. Kelly Sr. and, more specifically, how he used rowing the Schuylkill to hone the skills that would make him a power broker in local business and politics. What emerges is a sympathetic portrait of a man best known for his flinty resolve, but one who — like the city he loved — could also be big-hearted and maddeningly contrarian.
Originally published in Philadelphia Magazine, April 2008