The Sinking of the R.M.S. Leinster

People on board

John Merrigan


John Merrigan was born on the 3rd of October 1877 in Clarence Street, Kingstown to William Merrigan and Catherine Carleton. John was the eldest of their five children and the family lived at various addresses in Kingstown. William, who had been born in Co Wicklow, was a Merchant Seaman, working on ships in the Irish Sea. John followed in his father’s footsteps working on a variety of ships, many of them transporting coal, and he spent one year, 1904, on the Irish Lights Ship SS Tearaght.

In February 1900 John Merrigan married Kate Lawlor of Clarence Street, whose father was also a Sailor. They lived in Lower Georges Street until 1910 when they moved back to Clarence Street. During that period they had eight children, including two sets of twins who sadly all died. In the 1911 census John gave his occupation as Merchant Seaman, but the following October on the birth certificate of the next child, he was a ‘Coal Porter’, and a ‘Labourer’ in 1914 on the certificate of his final child.

There are no records to show when John went back to sea, and he does not appear on the 1918 Crew List of the City of Dublin Steam Packet Co. but he appeared as ‘Seaman’ on the list of survivors of the sinking of RMS Leinster on the 10th of October 1918, provided by the Company. Nothing is currently known of John Merrigan or his family after 1918.


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