Jack Murphy

Politician + General + Carpenter
Born 1920

(John) Jack Murphy (1920 – 11 July 1984) was an Irish politician and the first unemployed person ever elected to a national legislature. He was elected to Dáil Éireann as an independent Teachta Dála (TD) at the 1957 general election for the Dublin South–Central constituency. Murphy was a former member of the Irish Republican Army who had been interned in the 1940s. At the time of his election, he was an unemployed carpenter.… Read More

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1920 Birth Murphy was born in 1920 at the back of Synge Street, Dublin. … Read More


1941 21 Years Old Arrested in 1941 by the Fianna Fáil government, he was interned with a number of other republicans in the Curragh until the end of the The Emergency in 1945. … Read More


1950 30 Years Old In the Mansion House Exhibition of 1950 he won an arts and crafts certificate for his leather and craftwork.
1953 33 Years Old He returned to his trade of carpentry where he was quickly re-elected shop steward after he took a leading part in several actions and strikes for better conditions, most notably the strike to end the campaign of sackings by employers which took place in 1953.
1956 36 Years Old 1 More Event
However, in 1956, during which record unemployed figures were reached in Ireland, he found himself one of the many thousands out of work. … Read More
…  He was elected to Dáil Éireann as an independent Teachta Dála (TD) at the 1957 general election for the Dublin South-Central constituency. … Read More
1958 38 Years Old 1 More Event
He resigned his seat on 13 May 1958 in protest at the indifference of the main political parties to the plight of the unemployed.
1959 39 Years Old 1 More Event
Faced with this situation he reluctantly made the decision to emigrate to Canada in 1959. … Read More


1964 44 Years Old 1 More Event
After his resignation he subsequently emigrated with his family to Canada but returned to Ireland in 1964.


1982 62 Years Old He worked there until 1982 when he took ill.
1984 64 Years Old 1 More Event
He died on 11 July 1984.
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