Mr Neal McNamee

Lost with his new wife Eileen

Neal McNamee

Mr Neal McNamee was born in Rooskey, Castlefinn, Co Donegal, Ireland on 29 August 1884 and his birth was registered in Strabane, Co Tyrone on 30 September that year. 

Hailing from a Roman Catholic family, he was the son of William McNamee (b. 1861), a road contractor originally from Co Cavan, and Catherine Gordon (b. 1863) who had married in Crossroads, Bellina, Co Donegal on 26 November 1882.

One of seven children, Neal's siblings were: Ellen (b. 20 February 1883), Catherine (b. 29 January 1889), Mary (b. 2 June 1891), Andrew (b. 25 September 1893), Maggie (b. 27 July 1898) and Rebecca (b. 2 April 1901). 

His sister Maggie lived only nine months and died from pneumonia on 20 May 1899. His sister Mary, aged 17 and unmarried, gave birth to a daughter in Strabane Workhouse on 4 December 1908 and named her Margaret; the child was raised by Neal's parents and was described as their own child on the 1911 census. 

Neal appears on the 1901 census of Ireland living with his family at house 1 in Rooskey and he was described as a scholar. His parents continued to live here and appeared at that address on the 1911 census.

Neal was working for Lipton's at 41, Silver Street, Salisbury when he met Eileen O'Leary (b. 1892), a resident of that town and a cashier with the company. They were married in Corpus Christi Roman Catholic Church in Pokesdown, Bournemouth on 12 January 1912; at the time Neal was a resident of Portman Road in Boscombe whilst working for Lipton's at 216 Christchurch Road, Bournemouth. McNamee was offered a position at Lipton Ltd. in America and Sir Thomas Lipton himself wrote a letter of introduction to his General Manager in New York.

The newlyweds boarded the Titanic at Southampton as third class passengers (ticket number 376566, which cost £16, 2s).

It is believed that Lightoller was referring to the McNamees when he recalled events of the evacuation:

... One young couple walked steadily up and down the boat deck throughout pretty well the whole of the proceedings. Once or twice the young chap asked if he could help. He was a tall, clean-bred Britisher, on his honeymoon I should say. The girl—she was little more—never made the slightest attempt to come towards the boats, much less be taken on board, although I looked towards her several times with a look of silent invitation, but no, she was not going to be parted from her man...

Neal and his wife died in the sinking and his body, if recovered, was never identified.

His family remained in Rooskey; his father died there on 10 January 1936 but what became of his mother is unclear. 

A bench with a plaque and a tree were placed in their memory in Winston Churchill Gardens, Salisbury. The original bench is still there but missing the original plaque; the original tree was destroyed by vandals. On 28 July 1999 a new tree was planted and a new bench and plaque unveiled.

 
Courtesy of the McNamee family

 

Articles and Stories

Western Gazette (1912) 
Leeds Mercury (1912) 
The Globe (1912) 
 

Comment and discuss

  1. TRACEY CLIFFORD said:

    THERE ARE ALOT OF TITANIC SITES OUT ON THE WEB, I WAS NOT SURPRISED BUT I DO WONDER HOW MANY WERE AROUND BEFORE THE LATEST MOVIE AND SHOW. WAS HAPPY TO VISIT YOURS SINCE IT HAD SUCH A COMPREHENSIVE LIST OF CREW AND PASSENGERS, WHICH IS WHAT I WAS INTERESTED IN. IT TURNS OUT THAT ONE OF MY 4TH GRADE GIRL SCOUTS HAD RELATIVES (DISTANT) WHO PERISHED WITH THE SHIP, EILEEN AND NEIL MCNAMEE, AND SINCE I WAS ABLE TO LOOK THEM UP, I WILL ABLE TO GIVE HER A PRINTOUT OF THEM. THANK-YOU. WHERE DID YOU GET THE PHOTOS? TERRIFIC SITE! AND I HOPE YOU CONTINUE YOUR RESEACH AND EFFORTS TO COMPLETE OTHER BIOS... Read full post

  2. Peter Dilworth said:

    Re:Third class passengers. Neal and Eileen McNamee. Neal was my mother's Uncle. He was 27 not 24 when he died. His wife Eileen was a local girl from Salisbury. They were married 18 mo. His first job was at Lipton's Bridport before he became branch manager at Salisbury. He was traveling to New York to take up the management of Liptons there. There is a plague and tree planted in their memory in Churchill Park in Salisbury. My Mom tells me that Eileen had a chance to escape the ship but choose to stay with her husband. Her body was later found and burried at sea. Part of this information... Read full post

  3. K.M. McNamee said:

    If anyone has more information about Neal and Eileen McNamee, please let me know. Some of her personal effects were recorded when they found her body but I don't know where they are. They were third class passengers. MR. NEAL MCNAMEE: Neal McNamee, 24, and his wife Eileen were originally from Ruskey in County Donegal, Ireland by way of Salisbury, England. They boarded the ship at Southampton. He worked in provisioning as a branch manager of Lipton's and was travelling to New York with his wife to take up a new post. K.M. McNamee

  4. Liz Foyle and Cathi Parker said:

    We are looking for any relatives or information on three third class passengers: Mr John Adams from Bournemouth, Hampshire and Mr Neil McNamee and his wife Eileen (nee O`Leary) who lived in Salisbury, Wiltshire. We particularly need to know where Neil originally came from - we question Ireland in favour of Edinburgh, Scotland. Also, does anybody know if a transfer list of passengers from RMS Adriatic to RMS Titanic exists? Anything greatly received. Liz Foyle and Cathi Parker Warwickshire, England

  5. Geoff Whitfield said:

    Third class passenger Eileen McNamee spent some time on the Island as a child - indeed, the family was shipwrecked going there!

  6. connor cummings said:

    Re: did they have any kids

  7. RICHARD MCNAMEE said:

    Re: HE WAS MY GRANDFATHER WILLIAM E MCNAMEE SR.' UNCLE. I DISCOVERED THIS FACT A FEW YEARS AGO WITH THE HELP OF MY UNCLE FRANCIS MCNAMEE. IT IS A FASCINATING STORY ABOUT MY LONG DEPARTED RELATIVES. GOD BESS THEM.

  8. Eileen Davis said:

    My name is Eileen (McNamee) Davis, I was wondering if anyone had any information on the McNamee's. She married Neal McNamee, She was 19 and on her honeymoon/immigration. I haven't been able to find anything and the photo, name, and birthdate are so eerie that it could have been me. She born on 16th Dec, my birthday is the 29th Dec, our names are spelled exactly alike, and I look just like the photo shown. Could I be related? I would like to know if anyone has any links, info, or can give me any leads to examine this farther. Thanks, Eileen

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Credits

Gavin Bell, UK
The families of Neal and Eileen McNamee
Elizabeth Foyle, UK
Catherine Parker, UK
Ian Green, UK
Darlene Heal, Canada
Arthur Merchant, USA
Senan Molony, Ireland
Brian J. Ticehurst, UK

References and Sources

Birth Certificate (Scan)
General Register Office Certified Copy of an Entry of Marriage (Scan)
Contract Ticket List, White Star Line 1912 (National Archives, New York; NRAN-21-SDNYCIVCAS-55[279])
Brian Ticehurst (1989) The Eileen and Neal McNamee Story.
Search archive Irish newspapers online

Link and cite this biography

(2020) Neal McNamee Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #1020, updated 1st April 2020 00:43:10 AM)
URL : https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/titanic-victim/neal-mcnamee.html