The House of McGrady is a Terran spacer noble family of Irish descent who are prominent in politics, government, business, and culture in human society. The family became prominent in the historical record in the 1690s, when clan leader Ciarán McGrady, also known as Ciarán the Black, was exiled from Ireland and settled in the Carolinas. The first McGradys to reside in space were Andrew McGrady (c.2058-2166) and his wife Brigid (2060-2170) and their children, who settled in the American Lunar habitat of Von Braun City in 2099. The family flourished on Luna as industrialists, partnered with the pro-independence politicians of Luna's major cities in the early 2150s. Under the patriarchy of Andrew's son, Donald (2100-2196), and grandson, Duncan (2133-2241), the McGrady family sided with the colonial independent movement. After the Interplanetary War, the McGradys were exiled to Saturn's moons, at the far reaches of the Solar System. During the intervening centuries, the family hopped to new Terran colonies in search of prosperity. Headed by Éamon McGrady (2660-2777), the McGrady clan eventually led the settlement of the gas giant Kolossen as one of the founding families of Wallerstein. There, they struck fame and fortune, despite some periodic setbacks. Today, the McGradys are one of the most well-known, wealthy, and influential of human political families, with many members of its current generation in positions of high power in industry, politics, and the civil service.
The McGrady family traces their ancestry to the medieval Irish knight Grádaigh of Derry, who served the High King Rory O'Connor until 1198, when he murdered the King and switched sides to the Anglo-Norman invaders. Reportedly, the High King had burned Grádaigh's village and homestead when he was younger, and he had planned his elaborate betrayal from the beginning. Invested with a knighthood by the English Lordship of Ireland, Grádaigh and his family consolidated tracts of rich farmland and became Clan Mac Grádaigh, or McGrady in English.The McGrady clan remains relatively unattested and unimportant throughout the remainder of the Middle Ages and Renaissance periods. They resurface in the historical record when Ciarán McGrady (1661-1711) becomes known as Ciaran the Black for dark hair and for his butchery of Protestant supporters of William III. He joined with the Jacobite army in the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, but was captured by Williamite forces. Ciarán, his wife and children, and his siblings and cousins were all uprooted from Ireland and exiled to the New World. They settled in Charles Towne, capital of the Province of Carolina. Ciarán swore revenge against the English, and upheld his family's Catholicism and Irish heritage in the face of significant prejudice. To this time, every member of the McGrady family has had a Gaelic first or middle name, and the family remains Roman Catholic.
The descendants of Ciarán McGrady made calculated moves promoting colonial autonomy and independence from Great Britain, starting with establishing themselves as successful slave traders in what became Charleston, South Carolina. Ciarán's grandson, Connor McGrady (1733-1803) advocated for independence from 1770 onwards, joining the clandestine South Carolina Provincial Congress. With the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War in 1776, Connor joined the guerilla army of Francis Marion, the legendary "Swamp Fox". After the war, he continued his family's trade but expanded their business interests to cushion them. Sure enough, the international slave trade was curtailed not long after his death. The McGrady's successfully expanded business to include banking and plantation management; several members of the family were employed as overseers on major plantations during the 19th century. By the 1850s, however, the family saw which way the political winds were blowing and they divested themselves of slave trade and plantation business. With a focus on banking, Seamus McGrady (1818-1864) captained the family and funded abolitionist politicians even though they were enormously unpopular in South Carolina. When the American Civil War broke out, Seamus and his family were forced to abandon their estate and considerable wealth to avoid arrest. They fled north, and Seamus joined the Union Army. While he survived several battles, including all three gruelling days at Gettysburg in 1863, he perished from cholera the next year. His descendants reacquired the family estate after the war but were disgraced among their former friends and clientele. Always searching for new opportunities, the family eventually became involved in the petroleum industry in the 1890s, steel production in the 1910s, and real estate in the 1930s. Michael Murdoch McGrady (1901-1966) championed the family's investments in heavy industry, real estate, and particularly aircraft and vehicle manufacturing during World War II. They became incredibly wealthy from this arrangement, maintaining their investments in various aerospace companies and land holdings until the close of the 22nd century. Michael's grandson, Patrick William McGrady (1961-2049) secured votes in the Deep South for the Democratic Party in the 21st century and served as US Secretary of State from 2021 to 2033. Patrick's son Finn (1989-2090), grandson James (2016-2104), and great-grandson Martin (2036-2087) also were stalwart supporters of the Democratic Party and were important aides to the political rise of Charles Compton. Of note, Finn was elected Vice President of the United States as Compton's running mate in 2032 and served in this office from 2033 to 2041, ran for the office again in 2056 under the presidential ticket of Chelsea Clinton, and failed in a run for President in 2060. Finn ran for a Senate seat from South Carolina in 2062 and held his seat until his death at age 101. He is considered by historians of American history to have been instrumental in the creation of the American imperial monarchy of Sebastian Compton.
Andrew McGrady, born in 2058 to Martin McGrady, was the first McGrady to aspire to settle in space. He was a veteran of World War III, and after the conflict he invested significant amounts of the family fortune into space development companies, including aerospace firms he already held stock in. By the 2090s, the first permanent, manned Lunar research outposts were established, quickly leading to Lunar habitats--mainly for the scientists and their families. Andrew sunk his family's wealth into commercial spacecraft and brought his family into space in 2099. Andrew, his wife Brigit, their six children, and his two brothers settled in Von Braun City (founded 2096), though his grandfather remained on Earth due to infirmity. However, Andrew's family was destitute and struggled to make a living in a research-driven city; Andrew's brother, Ryan, was a renowned chemist and was able to keep the large family afloat until Andrew received significant returns on his business investments. He used some of this new wealth to promote heavy industry on Luna, touting the benefits of low-gravity construction. Settlers flocked, and with them came frontiersman ideals, fostered in part by McGradys vison of industry flourishing in the Lunar hinterlands. In his later years, he advocated for Lunar autonomy and partnered with Rupert Rycon, a Lunar-born politician and head of the pro-independence Lunar Republican Party. He joined hands with Rupert Rycon in declaring Lunar independence in 2152. The resulting War of Lunar Independence was a brief but bloody affair. Andrew died in 2166 as a citizen of the Lunar Republic. His son, Donald, and grandson Duncan led the family during the tumultuous period of colonial unrest that erupted in the Martian Revolution, the secession of many other Solar System colonies, and ultimately the Interplanetary War. The McGradys fought for the secessionists under the banner of the Lunar Republic. The end of the war spelled the end for the McGrady clan in Luna; Duncan's uncles and grand-uncles had died before or during the war, his father had died alongside Rupert Rycon, and he himself was exiled to Saturn, along with his wife and two daughters.
With the development of hyperspace tunnelling and jump-gate technology in the following century, the McGradys were again presented with a great opportunity. Duncan died in 2241 before he could undertake any travel plans, but his daughters Saoirse McGrady (2173-2270) and Etna McGrady (2168-2258) made preparations. After Etna died under mysterious circumstances in 2258, it fell to Saoirse and her children to finish the plan. Saoirse had married after the war, but kept her father's surname out of pride; her husband, a resource trader named Martin Lineman, put all of his money behind their efforts. They and their sons Liam (b. 2200) and Logan (b. 2202) booked passage on a settlement ship outbound to the Orion Arm colonies. They made landfall in 2260 at Epsilon Eridanus II, though Saoirse died only ten years later. Liam lived until 2291 and Logan until 2300, both bearing several children. However, mistrustful of most other families, cousins often married first or second cousins in the next few generations of McGradys. Throughout the Orion Arm colonial wars of independence and the later First Contact War, the family stayed aloof and uninvolved; they had learned to be shrewd and careful with their politics and service. Even as humanity joined the broader galactic community, Clan McGrady kept largely to themselves. They settled themselves into a solidly upper-middle class position on Brahe, as the world came to be officially named, and became involved mostly with local poltics and business in a provincial town. A quiet life of mediocrity, however, did not sit well with the McGrady family, and repeated attempts were made to uproot the family and find fortune in new colonies. When the head of the family left, all of their children and siblings went with them. Family heads during this time included Liam (2200-2291), his son Faolán (2225-2360), his son Fergus (2250-2366), his daughter Aisling (2288-2424), her grandson Michael (2342-2460), his grandson Colin (2400-2511), his son Alan (2432-2580), his granddaughter Casey (2496-2590), her grandaughter Mary (2561-2677) and her grandson Desmond (2630-2701). Desmond's son and the head of the family that would change their fortunes forever, Éamon John McGrady, was born in early 2660.
Éamon and his brothers Michael (b. 2662) and Patrick (b. 2663) entered into business in banking for the wealthy worlds of the Inner Colonies. Rumors abounded that they used this business to launder money for various organized crime syndicates, but no evidence of this has surfaced in over five centuries of investigation. The three brothers used this income to invest in real estate, and amassed a considerable fortune; this fortune as further used by Éamon to contribute to the funding of a colonization mission in 2703. The recently-explored star system Edel housed several gas giants but no habitable planets or moons--however, the gas giant Kolossen happened to be just within a safe, stable orbit with ideal levels of radiation, light exposure, and nearby resources. Along with his business partner and childhood friend, Isaac Rothschild, he uprooted his entire family and travelled with the colonists to the construction site and helped oversee the fabrication of three pairs of Island-3 type orbital habitats over the following year. The nominal president of the expedition, Trey Waller, named the first pair Wallerstein. McGrady named the second one Derry, and Rothschild named the third on Rothstein. However, Derry's construction was halted and McGrady was forced to settle in Wallerstein in disgrace. His family began entrenching themselves into the political and economic life of the city. Several universities were chartered with McGrady money, and later the clan's sizeable grants allowed the founding of numerous elementary and secondary schools. Their patronage expanded to include hospitals, art galleries, museums, and parkland. Éamon had an immense estate constructed on Wallerstein as the family's home, which presently includes the primary manor, seven smaller houses, six cottages, and a forest complete with stream, which runs via a drainage system into the habitat's water recycling plant. The McGrady estate covers an area of around 12 km2, the same land granted to them by the city charter in 2705.
Éamon died over seventy years later, leaving the entire estate to his youthful great-grandson, Devin (b.2756). Devin consolidated and reorganized the family business as a powerhouse financial services firm, with investments in pharmaceuticals and technology companies in Wallerstein. The McGrady Financial Group became the economic lifeblood of the city, and enabled it to become a rival to neighbouring Rothstein. Isaac's great-great-grandson Joseph was rewarded with baronial rank in the Terran Imperial peerage for his military service in the 2850s, garnering even more prestige for Rothstein. Wallerstein, however, continued to outpace it in population, economy, and political importance. Rothstein remained the star system's capital, but Wallerstein produced several notable politicians and civil servants. The McGradys were among them, and several members of the family served in city or colonial government, with some going as far as the Inner Colonies Provincial Parliament. Though the family began its political involvement with the Conservative Party, it drifted towards more radical politics involved with the human nationalist movement starting in the 3000s, which became popular in the Imperial provinces. In time, they became one of the most influential supporters of the National Humanist Imperial Labor Party, fundraising for NH candidates in local and provincial elected office.
Heads of the family during their era of rising to the top of society in Wallerstein include Éamon himself, his great-grandson Devin (2756-2860), his son Domhnall (2788-2891), his son Duncan Oliver (2800-2899), his granddaughter Doreen (2872-2980), her daughter Erin (2897-3001), her son Doyle (2929-3030), his brother Daniel Finn (2933-3060), his son Francis Finn(2968-3071), his son Finnbar (2999-3090), his grandson Teague (3070-3155), his daughter Patricia (3100-3180), and her son Dougal (3136-3193). Dougal had two children, a bastard named Patrick MacDougall (b. 3170) and a legitimate son, Proinsias Petyr McGrady (b.3173). At a mere twenty years old, Proinsias would inherit his father's company, after Dougal drowned at age 57.
Proinsias McGrady was seen as a fresh start for the family. His public image was that of a modern, youthful, and cultured CEO. His wife, Lois Cypher-McGrady, was a glamorous fashion model. He had a a son, Paul, in 3206 and a daughter, Shannon, in 3210. However, he rather quickly developed a reputation for smugness and snobbishness. Rumours began to circulate that he abused his wife and had several mistresses. He often dressed in sleek black suits and cloaks, and wore a pointed goatee bead. His signature style appeared to be a comical imitation of the "classic" cinematic villain. The board of directors of the McGrady Financial Group analysed his behaviour as indicative of narcissistic and possibly antisocial personality tendencies. Their reports and internal memos on the subject were kept secret until many years later; the revelation of them indicates that the board saw these behaviours as an asset to Proinsias' management of the company. They believed it would drive it towards success with an assumption that Proinsias would display ruthlessness and drive.
However, they misjudged his generosity. He spoiled his infant children with gifts. He borrowed enormous sums of money in order to make generous donations to public institutions and private endowments for education and the arts in Wallerstein, with his family's stocks as collateral. While this did, for a time, buoy public opinion of him, it did not prevent scandals from ruining his reputation. He was accused by tabloid media of physically or sexually abusing his nieces and nephews. The combination of financial mismanagement and constant scandals caused stock prices to drop and shook the confidence of the corporation's clients. The company lost profits in the 3208 through 3212 fiscal years, causing the board of directs to vote Proinsias out of the chairmanship and dismiss him from the company.
The McGradys floated for a few years on the family's extensive fortune, but Proinsias and his wife squandered much of their savings on frivolous purchases and the cost of maintaining the enormous McGrady estate. They were forced to sell many of their shares in the company to pay for their living expenses. Meanwhile, the company began to decline and the value of Proinsias' existing stock plummeted. The family was flung into financial poverty by the beginning of the 3220s, especially after Proinsias refused to sell the estate and after the birth of the McGrady's second daughter, Brigid Anne McGrady, in 3217. The Wallerstein Electric Company shut their electricity off in 3221, plunging the estate into darkness. The family also dealt with hunger and malnutrition while in poverty. With most of their stocks consisting of perishable food and luxury meals, very little remained that could be rationed. The rationing only lasted a few years, and in 3223 Brigid died of starvation, though it was originally reported as due to illness.
With careful planning, the family survived on game and poultry that lived on the estate and cultivated herbs and vegetables. Government programs provided them with vital medicines and some food, to stave off scurvy and other vitamin deficiencies, but Proinsias stubbornly refused most assistance. Later, in early 3225, Paul McGrady died in a violent incident after work in which a fellow student of Shannon's shot him to death. The assailant was captured and, despite being fifteen, was tried as an adult.
His daughter achieved a higher education and