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Michael Joseph Dowd

County Clare, Ireland
Death 9 Feb 1971 (aged 78)
Georgetown, District of Columbia, District Of Columbia, USA
Burial Unknown
Plot Interment Private
Memorial ID 111816902 · View Source
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Michael J. Dowd was a member of the Metropolitan Police Department, Washington, DC.

He married Peggy Meenehan, in 1934, and they raised five children together; Maureen, the youngest, Michael, Martin, Kevin and Peggy.

The 1940 census reveals:

Household Gender Age Birthplace
Head Michael Dowd M 46 Irish Free State
Wife Margaret Dowd F 31 Delaware

They resided at 1324 Rittenhouse Street in Washington, DC.



Ten firemen and a civilian, over-come by illuminating gas, at 7:30 o'clock last night in the basement of the National department sore, 3125-27 M street northwest, were rescued by policemen of the Seventh precinct and firemen. The men were overcome when a gas meter caught fire from a pile of rubbish. Seven were removed to Georgetown and Emergency hospitals. The others, after receiving first aid treatment, were taken to their homes.

The trapped firemen were rescued by Policemen W.F. Sager, A. Shockey and Michael Dowd, of the Seventh precinct. The officers carried the firemen to the top of the basement steps where waiting arms received them. George Dickinson, who had gone to the basement to stop the flow of gas, was rescued by firemen.

When Policeman Sager arrived at the scene of the fire he heard cries coming from the basement. Sager entered and carried several of the firemen to the top of the steps before Shockey and Dowd arrived.

George Warren, employed at the department store, was about to close the doors for the night when he detected the odor of smoke coming from the basement. Investigating, Warren discovered a pile of rubbish blazing in the middle of the basement. An alarm of fire brought the truck and engine companies. Meantime the heat from the blazing rubbish melted the connections of the larger meter, setting the gas fire. A moment later the firemen began dropping to the ground from the effects of the escaping gas.

A large portion of the flooring of the store was torn away to let fresh air get to the cellar where they lay



Michael J. Dowd, 77, retired head of the Senate detail of the metropolitan police department, died Tuesday, after a heart attack.

Mr Dowd, a former national president of the Ancient Order of Hibernians was stricken while attending a speech by Bernadette Devlin at Georgetown University.

He had retired as an inspector in 1959 after 40 years on the Metropolitan Police Department. Mr Dowd had been head of the detail charged with protecting the U.S. Senate for 17 years at the time of his retirement.

The old District Board of Commissioners twice named Mr Dowd "policeman of the year" in recognition of his heroism. One of the awards was for capturing an escaped killer who broke Mr Dowd's nose by hutling a flatiron at him.

Born in County Clare, Ireland, he came to the United States in 1914. He served with the U.S. Army in France during World War I and joined the police department after the war.

He worked in Georgetown and then became a detective on the robbery and homicide squads before being assigned to Capitol Hill.

Active in the Ancient Order of the Hibernians for many years, Mr Dowd served as its national president from 1954 to 1956. He had also been active in the American Legion and Irish War Veterans.

After his retirement from the force, Mr Dowd became an aide to Sen. Joseph C. O'Mahoney of Wyoming until the Senator's death in 1961. In 1965 he went back to work on Capitol Hill as administrative aide to Ohio Congressman Robert Sweeney.

Mr Dowd lived 3932 Livingston St. NW. He is survived by his wife, Margaret Meehan Dowd, of the home; three sons, Kevin of Washington, Martin of Silver Spring and Michael Jr. Of Arlington; two daughters, Margaret Ann of Los Angeles and Maureen of the home; two sisters, Agnes Flanagan of Washington and Susan O'Connor of Galway, Ireland, and two grandchildren.

Maureen, his daughter is a Pulitzer Prize winning, New York Times columnist.

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  • Created by: John Rentz
  • Added: 5 Jun 2013
  • Find A Grave Memorial 111816902
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Michael Joseph Dowd (25 Mar 1892–9 Feb 1971), Find A Grave Memorial no. 111816902, ; Maintained by John Rentz (contributor 46781289) Unknown.