Bernard McGuinness was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, England, on the 27th August 1877, the son of Thomas and Mary (née Berry) McGuinness. The family home when Bernard was growing up was at 39. Tindall Street, Liverpool.. Bernard was initially a dock labourer before he decided on a life at sea as a ship’s trimmer.
On the 24th October 1908, Bernard married Emma Rigby, and lived for a time at 2 House, 3 Court, Boundary St., Kirkdale, Liverpool, before moving further up the street to number 139.
He engaged as a trimmer in the Engineering Department on board the Lusitania, at Liverpool, on the 12th April 1915. His monthly rate of pay was £6-0s-0d. He reported for duty at 8 a.m. on 17th April, before the
Lusitania’s left for her final ever voyage to New York and survived her sinking three weeks later.
On his eventual return to Liverpool, he was officially discharged from her final voyage and paid the balance of wages owing to him. In keeping with all the crew, whether they survived or not, this was paid up to and including 8th May, 24 hours after the liner had gone down,
Bernard McGuinness continued to serve on Cunard’s trans-Atlantic liners for many years after his experience, including the
Aquitania. He is listed as being a fireman while serving on this liner.
He died in Belmont Road Hospital in Liverpool in September 1945, aged 68 years. He was buried in Ford Cemetery, Liverpool, on the 22nd September 1945.
Register of Births, Marriages and Deaths, 1911 English Census, 1901 English Census, 1891 English Census, 1881 English Census, Madeline Escalante, Cunard Records, PRO BT 100/345, PRO BT 350.