Murphy // Washington D.C.

Contributed by Brian Murphy

Brian Murphy’s paternal great-grandfather took part in the Irish Fenian Rising of 1867. Rather than being executed he was deported to Canada. In order to start a new life, he subsequently walked from Canada to Providence, Rhode Island.

Brian’s paternal grandfather John C. Murphy was born in Rhode Island. The family had a grocery store called Elmgrove Market in Providence. The business ran into difficulties during the Great Depression. Competition from the A & P supermarket chain and the family’s own soft-hearted generosity in extending credit to customers led to the close of the store. John C. Murphy died within months of the closure.

Brian’s grandaunt, Mary McGovern, survived the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. Travelling in steerage and identified on the ship’s manifest as a 20-year-old ‘domestic’, she was coming to America to help her sister, Ann (McGovern) Meenagh, with the new baby — Brian’s mother, Anna Meenagh, who was born exactly 2 weeks after the sinking. More recent photographs include a portrait of Brian Murphy Jr. (Brian’s son), a Fighter Pilot with the U.S. Navy.