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Joseph Cyril Carroll (1901–1998)

This article was published:

This entry is from People Australia

Joseph Carroll, 1948

Joseph Carroll, 1948

photo sourced from City of Sydney website

Joseph Cyril Carroll (1901-1998) engineer, city council alderman 

Birth: 8 November 1901 at Warrenpoint, County Down, Ireland, son of Joseph Carroll, an English-born solicitor, and Mary, née McQuaid, a Dubliner. Marriages: (1) 7 July 1926 at St Joseph’s church, Woollahra, New South Wales, to Gladys Mary Murray, a typiste born in Sandycove, Dublin, Ireland. They had one daughter and five sons before the marriage ended in divorce. (2) 7 September 1963 in the Registrar General’s Office, Sydney, to Marjorie Claire, née Howlett, late Barry (1908-1981), a Sydney-born company secretary. Death: 27 January 1998 in Sydney. Religion: Catholic. 

  • Educated at Benedictine College Mount St Benedict, Gorey, County Wexford. Apprenticed to engineering firm, Ross and Walpole.
  • Joined Irish Republican Army, working in special service section, participating in famous battles of War of Independence, Bloody Sunday raid of November 1920 and Customs House Raid in May 1921. During Irish Civil War became adjutant of 2nd Eastern Division. Arrested and spent 11 months in Mountjoy Gaol and Gormanstown Camp.
  • Following release from detention was a merchant seaman and joined the Seamen’s Union. Reputedly he used a false name “John Charles Murphy”.
  • Jumped ship in Sydney in 1924. Worked at Mort’s Dock, Balmain, when he was a member of the Australasian Society of Engineers, and started small medical engineering business which prospered. Later a member of the Amalgamated Engineering Union.
  • An Australian Labor Party alderman for Philip Ward and Municipality of Darlington on Sydney City Council from 4 December 1948 to 12 December 1953. Member ALP branch, Pyrmont. Boycotted special council meeting to commemorate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.
  • Contested ALP preselection for the Federal seat of West Sydney in 1949. Failed to gain re-endorsement for Council in 1953 when rank and file preselection ballot was cancelled.
  • Pyrmont playground named after him.
  • Retired from his engineering business in 1963. Returned to Ireland in 1966, 1982 and 1991 for anniversary celebrations of the Easter Rising.
  • In 1994 led Sydney St Patrick’s Day parade.
  • An enthusiastic punter.

obituary, Sydney Morning Herald, 7 February 1998; Irish Echo, 26 February-11 March 1998; information including eulogy delivered at funeral from Ann-Maree Whitaker; Custom House research: The Clock is Still Going

Citation details

'Carroll, Joseph Cyril (1901–1998)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 20 May 2024.

© Copyright Labour Australia, 2012

Joseph Carroll, 1948

Joseph Carroll, 1948

photo sourced from City of Sydney website

Life Summary [details]


8 November, 1901
Warrenpoint, Down, Ireland


27 January, 1998 (aged 96)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.

Key Organisations
Political Activism