People on board
Robert Anthony was born in 1863 in Holyhead to Robert Anthony, Seaman, and Margaret Jones, one of four children. In 1861 Robert Anthony Snr. who had been born in Southampton, was on board the CDSPCo’s paddle-steamer RMS Connaught and the connection with this Company continued to 1918. Robert Jnr. joined the company in 1875 at the age of 12 as Captain’s Boy. Robert Snr. appears to have died in Dublin in 1879 at the age of 43 and Robert Jnr. is listed in the 1881 UK Census in Well St., Holyhead with his widowed mother and two of his siblings. His occupation was given as ‘Steward’.
In April 1883 he was married in Dublin to Mary Rigali, daughter of Italian Confectioner Joseph Rigali. Mary’s address was given as Brady’s Cottages, the same as in the Westland Row Baptismal Register, at the baptism of their first child, Elizabeth Mary, the previous October. Their next child Helena was born in January 1890 in Well St, Holyhead; the exact date of their move to Holyhead is not known. There were four further children born in Holyhead.
In the 1901 census Robert was on board the RMS Leinster in Liverpool as ‘Lamp Trimmer’ and in 1911 on board the RMS Connaught with Captain Birch in Kingstown. His position on board the RMS Leinster in 1918 again was ‘Lamp Trimmer’, a specialist job keeping the oil lamps burning brightly throughout the ship, especially the deck and navigation lights. When the torpedo struck the ship, Robert Anthony helped to launch a lifeboat, but his own life was lost.
His death was registered in Dublin and a certificate issued. He is buried in Maeshfryd Cemetery in Holyhead and his name is inscribed on the Holyhead War Memorial and the Park School Memorial.