Limerick remembers its Titanic victims

Anne Sheridan


Anne Sheridan

A PUBLIC display of documents relating to Limerick people on board the Titanic has been unveiled in Limerick city library.

A PUBLIC display of documents relating to Limerick people on board the Titanic has been unveiled in Limerick city library.

Of the 16 local people who boarded the ‘unsinkable’ ship in Cork a century ago this week, six people survived but many of those lived went on to live short and tragic lives.

Those on board - all steerage passengers - were aged between 16 to 46, and were from Abbeyfeale, Lough Gur, Askeaton, Rathkeale, Pallasgreen, Castleconnell, Broadford, and Mount Plummer. The city residents had resided in Watergate, Clare Street and High Street.

Liam Hogan, library assistant in The Granary, Michael Street, said the records are “fascinating” and anticipates a lot of interest from the public during this centenary week.

Mr Hogan is the creator of the Twitter site, @Limerick1912, which provides daily updates of what life was like in Limerick 100 years ago, and throughout the week will be tweeting facts about the Titanic’s Limerick connections. The site was launched five weeks ago and it’s garnering 100 new followers each week.

“It’s hard to look at the records about the Titanic academically, because it can be very emotional to see what happened to people. Even some of the survivors had very tragic ends to their lives. When you look at the records of those who left you can see straight away why they were leaving as some of them worked as servants,” he said.

Among the exhibits to go on display will be photos of about 10 of the Limerick people on board, newspaper adverts and articles in the Limerick Leader and Limerick Chronicle at the time leading up to its sailing and its eventual fate, as well as Census records.

Among the Limerick survivors on the Titanic was a woman who was two months pregnant, a young man who celebrated his 20th birthday on board but later died in the States from anthrax poisoning, while another survivor died from a flu in New York six years later.

The bodies of all those from Limerick who died at sea were never recovered, with the exception of Thomas Morgan, who was believed to be from Limerick though listed as living in Southampton in official records.

His remains are among hundreds buried in Halifax.

The county Limerick village of Askeaton will remember four people who left the area in 1912 in the hope of building a new life, with the unveiling of a plaque in their honour and an exhibition dedicated to their lives.