Arran fishermen found resting in Ardglass graveyard

The gravestone of Daniel McMillan in Ardglass cemetery.

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The gravestones of three fishermen of Arran, who died more than 150 years ago, have been found in a quiet cemetery in Northern Ireland.

The three crewmen drowned following the sinking of the fishing smack Tickler from Lochranza on October 16, 1862 in Dundrum Bay, off the coast of County Down.

Historian Neville Turkington recently made the discovery in the graveyard of the Church of Ireland in Ardglass and is asking Arran Banner readers if they can shed any more light on the tragedy.


The men who died were Daniel McMillan of Lochranza  and brothers John and Dugald from Whitefarland. There may have been more crewmen lost, but no more graves were found by Neville in Ardglass.

He said: ‘Daniel  McMillan’s father, who was  a farmer in Lochranza, erected a fine headstone to his lost son. John and Dugald’s mother, Elizabeth Kerr of Whitefarland, also erected a headstone to the loss of her aforementioned sons.

‘Hopefully your readers will find this piece of lost history to some of Arran’s sons, who are interred here in Ardglass Northern Ireland, of interest.  Maybe there are descendants of the McMillan and Kerr families who could shed more light on this or they now know where their distant relatives rest.’

Brothers John and Dugald Kerr drowned in the Tickler tragedy.