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About Burke's Public House
In the early 1900’s, times were tough in Galway, Ireland. Sarah Burke and Lawrence Costello were loving parents struggling to support their family on a small farm just outside of town. With fifteen mouths to feed, this was no simple task. Fortunately, Sarah was a bright girl with a strong personality and the gift of gab. Every night, neighbors and townsfolk stopped by the farm to escape the cold; to hear her stories and enjoy a pint or two by a warm fire.
As her audience grew, Sarah began to realize there may be a way to help her family as she entertained her patrons. Perhaps she should clear out the old barn behind her home and serve up some Guinness alongside her famous stew? Maybe folks would come in, enjoy the comfort, and drop a few coins in the till…
Sarah decided to give it a go. She posted signs at the local church that led neighbors to her barn door, on which now hung a sign reading “Burke’s Public House – Eat, Drink and Gab.” The locals started streaming in night after night – Sarah’s idea was a resounding success! Luckily, she had her family to help with her new guests. The children didn’t mind serving stew and pouring Guinness; while they were a bit weary at school, not one of them complained as their hats and scarves were warm and there were no longer holes in their shoes.
The children grew and dispersed. Bill, second to the youngest and knowing he would not inherit the family farm, moved to America. He made his living as a carpenter, and with his lovely wife Sheila raised six children of their own. Two of his boys, Brendan and Kevin, yearned to recreate their Grandma Sarah’s vision…
Now a century later, in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood, Brendan and Kevin present Burke’s Public House. Here, the brothers hope to re-create Sarah’s knack for bringing people together to Eat, Drink and Gab