Family History


The O'Bryan family sailed from Cork in 1891, bound for the new world. Fleeing the famine, they braved North Atlantic storms, Castle Garden bureaucrats, corduroy roads, the Erie Canal, and the uncertainties of subsistence farming in Indiana to bring you this traditional Irish pub.

That first Irish-American O'Bryan family had only two surviving children, but the fifth generation of that family, that of Sylvester and Julia, had 14 offspring. And what a brood they turned out to be: lawyers, military men, real sisters (as in nuns), mechanics, coaches, businessmen, scientists, farmers, builders, and true community volunteers. In the words of sister Judy, "Mom and Dad taught us to laugh, love, share, pray, and live."

Jerry O'Bryan, the founder of Nine Irish Brothers, is the youngest of nine boys (Bert, Jim, Michael, Willie, Norman, Bobby, Tim, and Johnny) and five girls (Patricia, Colleen, Muriel, Judy, and Karen). Jerry and his wife Jan pay tribute to his brothers with the pub's name and honors his sisters with an inscription above the bar: & Five Irish Sisters. (He also says that the siblings took a vote, and the the name was decided 9 - 5.)

Family is core to a traditional Irish pub, and O'Bryan's Nine Irish Brothers is no exception: Family members helped build the pubs and helped to prepare for operations.

The family tradition runs strong even today: while Jerry and Jan have passed on management activities to their daughter Maggie and her husband Matt, you are likely to find Jerry and Jan enjoying the Craic, or see youngest daughter Mollie helping out at the West Lafayette pub. Grab a stool and a pint, and it won't be long before you, too, feel like part of the O'Bryan family.