Thames and Avon Branch of the Murray Club
Apprentice Boys of Derry
Adam Murray, according to the LANDED GENTRY OF GREAT BRITAIN AND IRELAND, by Sir John Bernard Duke, was a son of Gideon Murray and Miss MACKY. We are not sure when Adam was born and there is apparently some debate as to whether he was born in Scotland or Ireland. We do know that in the late 17th Century, Adam was living where his father had settled at Ling on the River Faughan, about 9 miles from the city of Londonderry.
For whatever reason, the Governor of the City of Londonderry, intended only token protection from the Jacobite might. Adam Murray had raised a troop of thirty horseman among his neighbours so the Governor dispatched them as part of the force whose purpose was to turn the Jacobites at the River Finn near Clady. It is unknown how the Governor thought this plan would succeed as he armed each defender with only three rounds of ammunition. The Jacobites quickly dispersed this 'defence' and three days later were poised outside the very walls of Londonderry.
The Jacobites and the Governor must have had quite a shock when about this same time Adam Murray showed up at the city gate leading what was left of his troops. The Governor's real intentions became clearer when he refused to readmit Adam and the troops. In defiance of the Governor's orders a Captain of the City Guard offered to let Adam Murray into the city without his men. Adam indignantly refused until all his men were given admission too.
Adam Murray then led a group of angry Londonderry citizens who confronted the city's Governor. When the Governor showed his true hand and ordered the capitulation of the city without a single defensive shot, Adam Murray boldly countermanded it, "NO SURRENDER!" Adam accused the Governor of treachery and called the people to arms.
With that said, Adam Murray found himself in charge of the defence of the city containing about twenty thousand people.
King James then attempted to buy Adam Murray and offered him a thousand pounds and a colonel's commission. Adam met the King's Men at the gate and rejected these schemes with contempt. The Jacobites then seized Adam's father, Gideon Murray and threatened to hang the old man if he could not induce his son to surrender the city. Gideon, who was nearly eighty, went into the town as ordered, but once inside he only encouraged his son to fight on.
King James' forces then surrounded the city and began to pound the inhabitants with artillery. The resulting siege would last for 105 days.
The citizens of Londonderry requested that Adam Murray become the town's new Governor. He refused, saying that he was rather for the field than for the conduct of government.
For the field indeed. Adam Murray led numerous cavalry charges outside the gates. During one of these harassing attacks Adam had his horse shot from underneath him. Adam Murray was a ferocious fighter and actually killed the French General Maumont during a skirmish at Pennyburn Mill. On yet another attack, a ball struck Adam on the helmet and left him badly injured. However, only a month later, Adam was out there in the field again and this time he suffered a shot through both thighs.
Adam Murray did not fully recover from his many wounds until several months after the siege was ended. The Londonderry inhabitants have never forgotten Adam Murray's courage, his leadership, and his sacrifice. Adam Murray will always be known as the soul of NO SURRENDER and his name has been locally perpetuated by the Murray Club, formed in his honour in 1847.
Adam Murray married Isabella SHAW and this couple had a least two children. Adam Murray died in 1706 and is buried in the Old Glendermot Churchyard in Londonderry, as is another of the siege heroes, Colonel John Michelburne.