George Taylor (signed on as James Taylor) was born circa 1888 in Southampton, Hampshire, England. He was the son of Thomas Taylor (1862-1919) and Eliza Sibley (1863-1948). His father was a native of Blackpool, Lancashire and his mother a Southampton-native; his parents has married in Southampton in 1882.
George first appears on the 1891 census at an address in Wallsend, Northumberland. His father is described as a ship's riveter. Also present on the census besides he and his parents are his siblings William and James. By the time of the 1901 census the family have moved back to Hampshire and are living at 60 Chapel Road, St Mary, Southampton. Another child, Dorothy, is present at this time.
George was married in Southampton in 1908 to Elizabeth Potter (b. 1885 in Southampton to Robert Potter and Ann Payne). They appear as a married couple on the 1911 census as boarders at 35 Russell Street, Southampton, James described as a ship's stoker and his wife as a laundress. Also present are their three daughters Dorothy Florence (1909-1988), Margaret Elizabeth (1910-1996) and Rosina Lillian (1911-1969).
When he signed-on to the Titanic, on 6 April 1912, he gave his address as of 35 Russell Street, Southampton. His last ship had been the Balmoral Castle. As a fireman he received monthly wages of £6. However, he signed on using his brother James' name and age. His brother James was born in 1886 and unmarried in 1912. Why George used a pseudonym isn't clear, but present-day family confirm that George boarded under an assumed name.
George Taylor was rescued in Emergency Lifeboat 1. He was subsequently called to testify at the British inquiry into the sinking. He appeared before the Wreck Commisioner's court on 17 May 1912.
George returned to Southampton and seems to have continued a career at sea. He and his wife would late have two sons: George in 1913 and Robert in 1915.
George Taylor died in Southampton on December 28, 1931 in Southampton. He is buried in Hill Lane Cemetery in that city. His wife died September 7, 1967. His brother James, whose name he had borrowed in 1912, later married and had several children before his death in 1958.
References and Sources
Board of Trade Hearings, 17 May 1912, Testimony
Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
Wreck Commissioners' Court, Proceedings before the Right Hon. Lord Mersey on a Formal Investigation Ordered by the Board of Trade into the Loss of the S.S. Titanic
Gavin Bell, UK