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This portrait of John Callahan, a captain and ship master, was completed by Ralph Earl (1751-1801) in 1785.
John Callahan was born in Cork, Ireland, in 1745. Callahan ran away to sea at the age of 10 and came to America. He married Lucretia Greene of Boston in 1774. Employed as a ship captain by John Hancock and other Bostonians, he was the master of numerous vessels including the ship Lucretia, named after his wife. John and Abigail Adams and Thomas Hutchinson were among his distinguished passengers. John Callahan died in Demerara in 1806.