Joseph Broderick was born 13th December, 1883 at 2, Moore Street, Cork, Ireland and the son of James Broderick, a farm labourer, and Jane (Healy).
In the Irish Census of 1911 Jane was a widow, aged 50, living with a daughter Jane, aged 11, at Cork Hill, Cork. It was stated that neither could read.
Meanwhile, back in the UK, the 1911 census revealed Joseph to be lodging at the home of a Mr Albert Edward Rogers of 70, Swan Street, Flint, and employed as a pitch worker at a Pitch and Tar Works. He was later employed as a chemical labourer.
He married Edith Parry at the Register Office, Chester on 6th July, 1912 and they lived at 4, Upper Queen Street, Flint. They had two children – James (1913–88) and Joseph (1915–99).
Joseph enlisted at Tralee, County Kerry, Ireland in August 1914, with the 6th Battalion Leinster Regiment, No. 6689 having previously served with the Territorial Army. It is not known when he transferred to the Connaught Rangers.
The County Herald of 6th August 1915 reported the following:
“A man named George Jones, residing in Upper Queen Street, Flint, appeared before the Magistrates in answer to two charges of threats made by a Mrs Edith Broderick, of 4, Upper Queen Street.
Mrs Broderick said that some dispute had arisen between her mother and the defendant on Monday evening last. There was a quarrel and Mr Jones threatened he would take her life if she went from her house to the water tap. He also threatened to “pull her liver out.” He had also struck her and threatened her upon another occasion. Mr Jones responded: “It is all through her mother telling fortunes and cutting the cards for the little girl in the house.” Mrs Janet Williams gave corroborative evidence of the defendant’s threats; and Police Inspector Jones said he had been called to the neighbourhood several times in consequence of the defendant’s conduct, the defendant being under the influence of drink each time. The complainant’s husband was a soldier at the Front.The Mayor said it was the duty of all men at the present time to protect women whose husbands were serving their country and fighting at the Front. Defendant would be bound over in the sum of £10 to keep the peace for six months in each of the two cases, and to pay 4s as costs in each case.”
What became of Joseph’s mother after this incident is not known. It is quite possible she returned to Ireland.
In September 1915 it was reported that Private Broderick was wounded in the arm in France. He recovered from the wound sufficiently to enable him to be granted a period of leave, whereupon he returned to Flint, and to his friends in Swan Street, receiving a hearty welcome.
He died in a hospital at Rouen, France on 25th November, 1918 from wounds received in action, and is buried in St Sever Cemetery Extension, Seine-Maritime, Rouen, France (Block S, Plot II, Row C, Grave 4).
He is remembered on two war memorials: Flint Town and St Mary’s Parish Church, Flint. He is also commemorated on the North Wales Heroes’ Memorial Arch, Bangor. There is a John Broderick remembered on the St Mary’s Catholic Church war memorial too. This could be him also, and someone simply got the name wrong, as no-one of that name could be traced.
Private Broderick was awarded the 1914–15 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Edith re-married, as Edith Louisa Brodrick, at St Mary’s Parish Church, Flint, on 6th July, 1919, to widower John Thomas Paynter (c.1868–1957). She died in Nantwich in 1953 aged 72.