Digges, Mary (née Quinn) (1872–47), actress and nationalist, was born Mary Roden Quinn on 9 June 1872 in Co. Fermanagh. A founding member of Inghinidhe na hÉireann (Daughters of Ireland), the nationalist society formed in Dublin on 15 April 1900, she was appointed its executive secretary by the society president, Maude Gonne (MacBride) (qv). She and Gonne led a ‘patriotic treat’ in Clonturk Park, Dublin, for children who did not attend the display in the Phoenix Park during Queen Victoria's 1900 visit to Ireland; this proved a significant nationalist event, attended by almost 30,000 children. Along with Jenny Wyse Power (qv), Quinn represented the National Women's Committee at the Franco–Irish celebrations held in Paris in 1900.
Her stage career was initiated through the Inghinidhe's promotion of Irish literature and drama; she performed in ‘An tobar draoidheachta’ (‘The magic well’), produced in 1900 in collaboration with William Fay (qv) and the Ormond Dramatic Company. Quinn's approach to Alice Milligan (qv) for help with the organisation of Gaelic tableaux led to the production by the Inghinidhe in 1901 of many tableaux vivants in the Antient Concert Rooms, and the first Dublin performance of ‘Eilis agus an bhean deirce’ (‘Eilish and the beggarwoman’) by Peadar MacGinley. In a double bill produced at St Theresa's Hall, Clarendon Street, in conjunction with the newly formed Irish National Dramatic Company, Quinn played the title role opposite the Naisi of her future husband, Dudley Digges (qv), in the first public performance of ‘Deirdre’ by George Russell (qv) (‘Æ’), and also appeared as Bridget Gillane in the first performance of ‘Kathleen Ní Houlihan’ by W. B. Yeats (qv) (2–4 April 1902). She played the leading roles in ‘Kathleen Ní Houlihan’ and in ‘The racing lug’ by James Cousins (qv) in the company's subsequent performance at St Mary's Minor Hall, Belfast.
A founding member and the first actress of the Irish National Theatre Society, she was instrumental in introducing the work of Padraic Colum (qv) to the society when she presented a manuscript copy of the author's ‘Broken soil’ to William Fay. At the society's premiere performance, she played the role of Brigit in Yeats's ‘The hour glass’ at the Molesworth Hall, Dublin (14 March 1903). She performed a significant part in mobilising members of Cumann na nGaedheal and Inghinidhe na hÉireann to confront Timothy Harrington (qv), lord mayor of Dublin, at a meeting of the Irish parliamentary party – which erupted into the so-called ‘battle of the Rotunda’ (18 May 1903) – to demand that he repudiate rumours published in the United Irishman regarding his acquiescence in an address of welcome for the impending visit of King Edward VII.
She helped defend Maud Gonne MacBride's house in Rathgar after Mme MacBride had hung out a black flag on the death of Pope Leo XIII during the royal visit; the resulting fracas with police and neighbours became celebrated as ‘the battle of Coulson Avenue’. Later that year Quinn participated in a protest rally on the Fall's Road, Belfast, on the occasion of the king's visit to that city. She chaired many meetings of Cumann na nGaedheal throughout 1903. On the opening night of ‘In the shadow of the glen’ by J. M. Synge (qv) (8 October 1903), she joined MacBride and Digges in walking out in protest, regarding as offensive the portrayal of a heroine who rejects both her unloving husband and mercenary paramour. Resigning from the National Theatre Society, she formed the short-lived Cumann na nGaedheal Theatre Company with Digges and MacBride, which produced five plays during the 1903 Samhain festival.
In 1904 Quinn went to America with Digges and P. J. Kelly to perform at the St Louis world exhibition, but objected to the stage-Irish content of one of the items on the bill. Though afterwards acting at the exhibition in ‘Deirdre’, she was sacked from the company because of her prominent role in the earlier strike. Thereafter she worked as a researcher at New York central library. Remaining permanently in America, she and Digges married on 27 August 1907; it is not recorded that they had children. She performed with him and Frank Fay (qv) in ‘The building fund’ by William Boyle (qv) in Powers Theatre, Chicago (1908). For four years (1911–14) she appeared on tour with George Arliss – for whom Digges was working as stage manager – in the highly popular play ‘Disraeli’ by L. N. Parker. While Dudley Digges became a renowned actor and director with the New York Theatre Guild, and also worked in film, his wife's acting career seems to have petered out. The couple resided at 1 West Sixty-fourth Street, New York. After taking ill while travelling by boat to their summer home on Fire Island, she died 21 August 1947 in hospital on Long Island, survived by a sister in New York; Dudley Digges died just two months later.