Mr. John Catherwood

John Catherwood, 41, and his wife, Maria, were from West Chester, Pennsylvania.  They were transfers from the Anchor Liner Cameronia.  Neither survived the Lusitania disaster.

Life and Lusitania

John and Maria lived on Maple Avenue, within sight of the Convent of the Immaculate Heart.  John was in the employ of Edward H. Jacob where he worked as a foreman for a mushroom plant, also situated on Maple Avenue.  The business was closely associated with the horticultural nurseries in Chester County, which is still known today as the center of the mushroom industry in the United States. In 1915 the couple sailed for Ireland, to be gone for eight weeks.  John had been suffering from a serious condition of Bright’s disease and hoped the sea air might be a benefit to him. He also wanted to pay a surprise visit to relatives and old friends in the land of his birth, perhaps for the last time, as physicians had predicted to Maria that her husband had but a very short time to live.  His mother lived in the northern part, and he had visited her at different times during the years prior to 1915. They had originally booked passage on the Anchor Line's Cameronia, which was requisitioned by the British government as the vessel was about to sail for New York.  The Catherwoods, with several other passengers, were transferred to the Lusitania. Both husband and wife were lost in the disaster, and it was believed by physicians in West Chester that the excitement of the wreck would have caused John's death, such was the advancement of his disease.  Neither body was recovered. The balance of John's estate, amounting to $2,438.43, passed to his mother, Mrs. Nancy Catherwood, who lived at Gortmacvane, Ireland.  In the estate of Maria Catherwood, the balance was $353.21, and this sum was awarded to her parents, James and Jane Carson, who lived at Lishigan, Ballymaconally, Belfast, Ireland. John and Maria died childless.

Related pages

John and Maria Catherwood at the Mixed Claims Commission
Contributors: Ben Holme Diane P. Rofini, Chester County Historical Society References: West Chester Daily Local News, 8 May 1915. West Chester Daily Local News, 13 May 1915. West Chester Daily Local News, 8 June 1915. West Chester Daily Local News, 12 June 1915. West Chester Daily Local News, 12 November 1915.  

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