24 jan 1890
30 Dec 1968
He joined the Royal Navy in 1904. He took part in many actions during World War I. In late 1918 he worked with the British Secret Intelligence Service. He was the only man to be knighted based entirely on his exploits as a spy. He was awarded the Victoria Cross for sinking the Oleg, a Bolshevik Russian cruiser. He saw action in World War II
born in Kandy, Ceylon. His father John Shelton Agar, was an Irishman from Woodmont, County Kerry
Feb 7, 1873
Apr 15, 1912
Businessman and shipbuilder; managing director and head of the draughting department for the Belfast shipbuilding company Harland and Wolff. Andrews was the shipbuilder in charge of the plans for the ocean liner RMS Titanic. He was travelling on board the Titanic during its maiden voyage when it hit an iceberg on 14 April 1912 and was one of the 1,517 people who perished in the disaster.
born at Ardara House, Comber, County Down
Jul 4, 1899
Naval surgeon, explorer, and author. From 1850–1854 sailed the arctic on HMS Investigator under the command of Robert John Le Mesurier McClure in search of the lost expedition of explorer Sir John Franklin. He became director-general of the Royal Navy’s medical department. He was awarded a KCB in 1871.
Ange René Armand
17 Feb 1788
13 May 1855
French naval officer and politician.
Descendant of an ancient family of Ireland who followed King James II to France
Baron Matthew Aylmer
Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Navy.
pirate. He was a ‘rear-admiral’ of the confederation of North Atlantic pirates c.1611 probably born in England,
operated out of Kinsale
Augustus Warren Baldwin
1 Oct 1776
5 Jan 1866
Joined the merchant navy in 1792. He was commissioned Royal Navy lieutenant in 1800. He participated in the bombardment of Copenhagen in 1807, and in 1808 received a gold medal and a commander’s commission for his part in the capture of the russian ship Sewolod (Vsevolod. Although retired from the navy, he was promoted to admiral in 1862.
born near Lisnagat in County Cork
quartermaster on HMS Adventure during Captain Cook’s Second Voyage 1772-1775. On the 31 December 1772 he became an A.B. He was Master of HMS Mercury when he died.
born in Kilkenny
13 Sep 1803
‘The Father of the American Navy’; an officer in the Continental Navy during the American Revolutionary War and later in the United States Navy. He commanded Lexington, Raleigh, and Alliance. He won the final naval battle of the American Revolution off the coast of Cape Canaveral on March 10, 1783.
born in Tacumshane, County Wexford
Polar explorer. Discoverer of the Antarctica continent, (mainland rather than islands), on 30 January 1820. Bransfield Strait, Bransfield Island, Bransfield Trough and Mount Bransfield are named after him, as is the RRS Bransfield.
13 Sep 1803
Creator of the Beaufort scale for indicating wind force. He entered the British Navy at 13 and served on HMS Colossus and HMS Latona before being transferred to HMS Aquilon, which participated in the ‘Glorious First of June’. With his brother-in-law he devised a system which could transmit a message from Dublin to Galway in eight minutes. An Alaskan sea is named after Beaufort.
born in Tacumshane, County Wexford
Hugh Talbot Burgoyne
17 Jul 1833
7 Sep 1870
Awarded the Victoria Cross, as a Royal Navy lieutenant, serving in the Crimean War, he landed at a beach where the Russian army were in strength, without covering fire, he set fire to corn stores and ammunition dumps and destroyed enemy equipment
born in Dublin
James ‘Spanish’ Blake
20 Feb 1635
spy. Blake was the second son of Walter Blake (died 1575) and Juliana Browne. His grandfather and brothers served as Mayors of Galway; his elder brother, Valentine Blake (1560–1634) was created a baronet in 1622. Blake moved through the world of international intrigue as an agent for, variously, the Irish, English, French and Spanish during the Nine Years War in the 1590s. He has been credited with the alleged assassination of Red Hugh O’Donnell in Spain in 1602. He was in the company of O’Donnell at the time of his death, and offered his services to Sir George Carew for the plot.
born in Galway
9 Sep 1754
7 Dec 1817
In 1800 he completed a major survey of Dublin harbour and recommended that the North Bull Wall should be constructed to prevent sand building up in the mouth of the harbour. He correctly forecast that this would create a natural scouring action that would deepen the river channel, and sand gradually accumulated along the side of the North Bull Wall resulting in the modern Bull Island.
Employee of the Dublin Ballast Board
8 Mar 1697
25 Apr 1782
born ‘Anne Cormac’ in Kinsale, County Cork.
Brendan ‘the Navigator’
circa 1460 to 484
16 May 577
a legendary voyager, may have travelled to America. His voyage was re-enacted by Tim Serveren in ‘the Brendan Voyage’
born in Ciarraighe Luachra (Fenit) in County Kerry
22 Jun 1777
3 Mar 1857
William Brown, also known as Guillermo Brown, Irish-born Argentine Navy admiral. Brown’s victories in the Independence War, the Argentina-Brazil War, and the Guerra Grande in Uruguay earned the respect and appreciation of the Argentine people, and today he is regarded as one of Argentina’s national heroes. Creator and first admiral of the country’s maritime forces, he is commonly known as the ‘father of the Argentine Navy’.
born in Foxford, County Mayo.
A near-blind fiddler who served in the Royal Navy. His sixth ship, in 1787, was the Bounty under Captain Bligh. He survived the wreck of the Pandora. He was acquitted of the charge of mutiny. He later served under Bligh’s nephew, Francis Bond, on the Prompte.
born in Kilkenny
William Baugh (Bagh, Bough, Boghe)
operated out of Kinsale
born in Derry
28 December 1770
born at Ballyleidy, Upper Clandeboye Co Down
captain of the Mountjoy, whose Christian name occurs in various forms, including Micah, Micaiah, Micaill, and Mihal
native of Derry city
officer of the Royal Navy and explorer engagement at Kinsale in 1601, where he commanded the pinnace Moone. In 1612–13 he led an expedition in search of the north-west passage, explored the west coast of Hudson’s Bay and gave his name to Button Bay. He was appointed admiral of the king’s ships on the coasts of Ireland, probably in 1614, and apparently for life. His Irish base was Kinsale, where he held command of the fort at Castle Park from 1616, who in 1612–1613 commanded an expedition that unsuccessfully attempted to locate explorer Henry Hudson and to navigate the Northwest Passage
admiral of the king's ships on the coasts of Ireland, Operated out of Kinsale
the Unsinkable Molly
Irish born father.
Hugh Talbot Burgoyne
able seaman with Captain Bligh on the Bounty.
Edward Barry Stewart Bingham
26 July 1881
born in Bangor Castle, Co. Down
Robert Rupert Gibson Cameron
24 October 1903
born at Carrickfergus, Co. Antrim
Joseph Grégoire Cazy aka O'Casey
minister of the navy.
George Cammock (Camocke, Camock),
sailor and Jacobite, was , He served as first lieutenant of the Lion (1690) and the Loyal Merchant (1693) and was captain of the Owner’s Goodwill (a fireship) and the Intelligence (1695–7), seeing action at the battles of Beachy Head and Barfleur and burning French ships at La Hogue. He captained the Bonettla off Cape Clear before serving with great distinction as captain of the Speedwell (1702) and Monck (1712–14), capturing many French privateers off the Irish coast.
born in Co. Down
James Leander Cathcart
enslaved in Algiers
28 May 1851
botanist, marine biologist, and traveller, was . In 1873 he was involved in the production of a magazine, Varieties, to which he contributed a number of papers and which he later edited. He also contributed to the Irish Monthly, Tinsley’s Magazine and Hibernia, His 1896 monograph on the history of the shamrock in Ireland is still the definitive account.
born in Dublin
9 October 1805
sailor, shipbuilder, and inventor.
born in Kinsale, Co. Cork
prophesied the as-yet-undiscovered location of Sir John Franklin’s 1845 polar expedition to chart the North-west Passage.
Richard William Coppinger
11 October 1847
naval surgeon, naturalist, and explorer, was surgeon aboard HMS Discovery.
born in Dublin.
Cormac Ua Liatháin in Durrow
pilgrim monk. mentioned several times by Adomnán (qv) in his ‘Vita Columbae’.
He appears in the genealogies as ‘priest’, son of Dímma, grandson of Commán, and belonging to the tribe of Uí Liatháin
Royal Navy captain and polar explorer.
former Minister for the Marine and noted yachtsman
Roger Anthony Craig
Laser dinghy competitor
yacht racing skipper
First Sea Lord
John deCourcy Ireland
Irish Maritime Historian
John de Robeck
admiral in the British Royal Navy who commanded the Allied naval force in the Dardanelles during World War I.
born in Naas, County Kildare
Sir James Dombrain
comptroller general of the Irish coastguard, and railway pioneer involved in waterford and wexford railway.
Edward England aka Edward Seegar
George Philip Farran
21 November 1876
5 January 1949
marine taxonomist and fisheries scientist. From 1898 he took part in the fisheries investigations organised by Edward William Holt at the RDS’s floating marine laboratory at Ballynakill, Co. Galway, where he investigated marine molluscs. Two years later (1900) the marine laboratory was taken over by the newly founded Department of Agriculture and Technical Instruction, and Farran was appointed assistant naturalist. He remained with the department until his retirement (1946). In 1910 he was appointed inspector of fisheries, and after the retirement of Charles Green, he was promoted chief inspector of fisheries (1938). During the first world war he served in Egypt and Palestine (1915–19)
born at Knocklyon House, Templeogue, Co. Dublin
HMS Jervis Bay.
1st Baron Gowran , Royal Navy officer and MP, was the son or grandson of Andrew Fitzpatrick of Castle Fleming, Queen’s Co. (Laois) MP for Harristown, Co. Kildare (1703–13) and Queen’s Co. (1713–14) he was created Baron Gowran of Gowran, Co. Kilkenny, In September 1715 he was sworn of the privy council, taking his seat in the Irish house of lords on 12 November.
3rd Earl of Granard diplomat, and admiral. he entered the royal navy in 1702, becoming captain of the Lyon in 1706. He engaged in much privateering and was responsible for seizing bullion on Genoese ships. As lieutenant governor of Fort St Philip, Minorca (1716–18),Sent to Vienna in 1719, he was briefly in charge of developing the Habsburg navy, he entered the British house of commons as MP for Queenborough (1723–7), and later Ayr Burghs (1741–7), and the Irish house of lords as Lord Forbes (27 February 1724). Continuing his naval career he served in the Mediterranean (1726–7, 1731), and was nominally governor of the Leeward Islands (1729–30) he was sent to St Petersburg (1733–4) as plenipotentiary minister to negotiate a commercial treaty. He successfully concluded the first trade treaty between Russia and any European state; the Czarina Anna was so impressed she later offered him the command of the Russian navy, but he declined.
polar explorer. Robert Forde was 35 years of age when he joined the Terra Nova as Petty Officer on May 30th 1910. He had served on the sea with his fellow Cork man, Patrick Keohane on a number of previous occasions between 1900 and 1906 aboard the Amphion, Emerald and Vivid. Man hauling for ten hours a day, Forde worked with tireless energy in an epic team effort to establish Scott’s ‘Corner Camp’ 35 miles from Cape Evans. In September 1912 Evans, Forde and Gran were sent on a perilous mission to re-mark and dig out Corner Camp in temperatures of minus 58 degrees Celsius. Forde suffered severe frostbite to the hands and was forced to return home to Cork. Mount Forde, a monumental peak of over 1,200 metres at the head of the Hunt Glacier was named in his honour
Robert Forde was born in the parish of Moviddy, Co. Cork.
won the 2007/2008 Barcelona World Race. see http://afloat.ie/resources/afloat-news-archive/item/482-foxall-lifts-sailor-of-the-year-award
Red Legs Greaves
Fought in the Irish Confederate Wars refused amnesty and turned Tory, captured and sold with 300 others to Barbadian planters by Cromwellian forces. With three fellow Irish slaves stole a lugger, while loading sugar, and escaped. Joined L’Olonnois who, in time, appointed Greaves captain of one of his ships, crewed by escaped Irish slaves. He captured Margarita and looted a fortune in pearls. He retired but was arrested and sentenced to hang. He escaped after an earthquake and went whaling. Eventually he did retire, became respectable and died of natural old age.
William Spotswood Green
10 September 1847
marine scientist.see http://www.botanicgardens.ie/herb/books/inetok.htm
born in Youghal, Co. Cork
John Griffith - Griffith, Sir John Purser - see irish bio
5 October 1848
21 October 1938
founding father of the Irish lighthouse service.
Master of the SS Great Eastern.
Merchant navy, RIC, Under-Secretary for Ireland.
director of the Marine Insurance Company, director of the Captains’ Society; Harbor Master for the Port of Philadelphia.
Captain of the US Revenue Cutter Bear, defender of Alaska’s native Americans, inspiration for Jack London’s ‘The Sea-Wolf’, prominent figure in James Michener’s ‘Alaska’.
John Philip Holland
rn – first Governor of New Zealand.
born in Waterford
Robert Homes (Holmes)
23 July 1694
influenced the decision of hundreds or even thousands of Ulster-Scots to leave Ireland for new opportunities in America.
born in Stragullin, Co. Tyrone