Carrigan was born in Denny, Stirlingshire, Scotland, to Irish parents and was trained tailor to trade but also attended classes in history and literature and was proficient in French and Latin, studied Irish, and was a Gaelic Leaguer.
Carrigan became President of his local branch of the United Irish League in 1898 and later became a member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood and in 1905 he became the Chairman of Sinn Féin’s first ever Cumann in Scotland, the Éire Óg Craobh Cumann.
Carrigan joined the Irish Volunteers in 1915 after the split from Redmonds National Volunteers. In January 1916, Carrigan and fellow IRB members from Glasgow travelled to Dublin along with members of Na Fianna and Cumann na mBan and formed the Scottish Division of the Irish Volunteers and were based at the home of Count Plunkett in Kimmage, County Dublin where they prepared for an insurrection against British Rule in Ireland.
During an evacuation of the GPO Carrigan was shot and killed by British soldiers on Moore Street.
- Irelands Own Roll of Honour Archived 11 November 2004 at the Wayback Machine.
- Na Fianna Eireann in Scotland Archived 24 November 2006 at the Wayback Machine.
- Volunteers from Scotland and the 1916 Rising Archived 10 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
- The Irish in Britain Who Heeded the Call Archived 20 November 2006 at the Wayback Machine.
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