Welcome to our Titanic Museum Attraction CREW BLOG!
Join us as we tell the stories of the 2,208 passengers and crew who sailed on the RMS Titanic and the stories of our guests who visit the Titanic Museum Attractions in Branson, Mo. and Pigeon Forge, Tn.
Monday, March 10, 2014
Thanks to two Sneaky Sisters!
Let me tell you about two very sneaky sisters that were
on the Titanic: Miss Margaret Jane Murphy, known as "Mary" or "Maggie
and Sister Miss Catherine "Kate" Murphy, from Aghnacliffe, Co
Maggie was 25 years old and Kate only 19 years old. Both were ready for a change.Life had been rough since their father died when they were young. Their mother
was often sick, which left the oldest brother to take care of them and he was very protective.
Kate and Maggie begged their brother to let them go to America. They received letters from other siblings who had already left Ireland and now lived in the Land of Opportunity and were enjoying its riches. However, Big Brother would not permit it.
Ladies in Edwardian Style Clothing
There were 2 young boys who lived next door to Kate and Maggie, otherwise known as the Kiernans, who began courting them. These 2 young men ages, 25 and 22
years old were planning to go to America on the Titanic.The Kiernans,bought third class
tickets for themselves on theTitanic and secretly bought
tickets for Kate and Maggie as well.
One day in April 1912, the sneaky sisters told their brother that
they were going to Queenstown to wish the Kiernans farewell. Instead, Kate and Maggie were actually planning to travel with the Kiernans to America. Can you just see these two women trying to
hide their luggage and their excitement from their brother and trying not to get caught?!
Perhaps the girls thought it would be safer to travel with these young men to look after them in case they needed protection? Maybe it was a premonition, because protection is exactly what they needed!
The first four days at sea, Kate and Maggie enjoyed 3rd
class parties and dining. However, on Sunday night, April 14th, the
sisters were woken by the passengers in the next cabin and were told to hurry to the deck for further instruction.The sisters began to panic as they were held back by crew at the gates to the
upper level.Was this karma punishing them for disobeying their older brother?Was it to be the end of them for their sneaky deeds?I am sure there were a few prayers
maybe a plea for forgiveness and a hope that God would give them a second chance.Then they heard a strong voice
of James Farrell yelling, "Great God, man! Open the gate and let the girls
through!" The crewman complied. Kate and Maggie scurried through the hallways and found their way
to a lifeboat right before it hurled into the sea.
Titanic and Olympic - Sister Ships
The sights and sounds that they experienced during the next hours became a frequent nightmare.They worried that the Kiernans had been left aboard the sinking ship. They saw many struggling in the waters to survive. They heard cries for help in the dark and finally the seas became silent and Titanic was gone.
Help was on the way. The Carpathia heard the distress signals, and made the journey to come to their rescue. These two sisters were given a second chance.
The following is an article from the New York Times on Sunday 21st
April 1912.It is an interview with Mr. Thomas Joseph McCormack’s sisterCatherin Evers tells about her brother’s experience on Titanic.
saw the condition of the ship he put on a lifebelt and leaped overboard. He
tried to get into one lifeboat which was only partly filled and the sailors
beat him off with their oars. He tried to enter another partly filled boat and
was again beaten off, being partly stunned this time.”
two young women in the boat, Kate and Mary Murphy, reached into the water and
grasped him. They pleaded with the sailors that there was plenty of room in the
boat, and at last got him aboard."
What you don’t
know is that accompanying Thomas Joseph McCormack age 19, were his
two cousins, Philip and John Kiernan. Tom McCormack survived the sinking, but
lost his two cousins.
After their arrival in New York, the sisters were sent
to St. Vincent's Hospital for recuperation. Their family already living in America came
to get them.Kate and Maggie were
very sad to find out that the Kiernans had died on the ship,
as well as James Farrell, the man who had saved them.The
sisters then had to write back to Ireland to let their poor mother know they