Thames and Avon Branch of the Murray Club    

  Apprentice Boys of Derry  

Michael Browning

Little is known of Captain Michael Browning although he was a native of Londonderry. As Captain of the 135 ton merchant ship 'Mountjoy', he traded between Londonderry and various cross-channel ports. Married to Jane Rankin in 1662 they had no children. Being the owner as well as the Captain of the 'Mountjoy' it seems likely that he was chosen for the Relief expedition because of his familiarity with Lough Foyle and the Port of Londonderry.

The Mountjoy and the Dartmouth

There can be no doubt that weeks before the relief actually took place, he was keen to attempt it. When the Boom was attacked, he was given the most dangerous position. As the Mountjoy struck the Boom he was on deck, sword drawn, encouraging his crew although at this time he was believed to be around fifty years of age. A musket-ball, fired from the shore, took his life in his greatest moment of glory, he was hit in the head and died immediately.

When the Mountjoy finally arrived at Londonderry with it's cargo of sorely needed provisions, it also brought the body of this brave man who had given his life that others may live. His remains were brought ashore, carried to the Cathedral and placed beside those of another great hero, Governor Henry Baker amidst much sorrow. 

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