The Tomb of Thomas McSweeney found in the St. Lawrence Cemetery in Birgu, makes the news in Ireland


 

St. Lawrence cemetery is one o the oldest cemeteries in Malta and is situated below the fortifications named St. Louis curtain, known by the locals as is-Sur ta' Pazan. Back in the 18th centaury burials took place in the crypt beneath the church, but after the gun powder tragedy in Birgu, no more graves where available in the city's churches, and an alternative had to be found to bury the large number of victims. Bishop Labini in the year 1806, authorized the Parish Priest of Birgu to consecrate this land to be used as a cemetery.

Along the years, British Catholic Servicemen were also buried in this cemetery. One of these was the noteworthy Irish seaman Thomas McSweeney, who was executed in the 1837 on board HMS Rodney. He was Court Marshalled for causing the death of Corporal James Allen. His grave, which is near the side door of the cemetery, is still being visited by persons who believe they had received graces through his intercession.

       

 

The Birgu Local Council took the initiative to clean this tomb and the surrounding area, as well as restored the plaque found on the wall.

For further information and to find the information listed on the Irish and Maltese newspapers, please check out the following links: