Benjamin Tucker McMicken was born in 1891 in Liverpool, Lancashire, England; his birth was registered in the second quarter of that year and he was baptised on May 31.
He was the son of Thomas McMicken (b. 1863) and Cecilia Elizabeth Tucker (b. 1855). His father was a native of Cumberland and his mother from Anglesey, Wales and they had married in 1882 in Birkenhead. They went on to have seven children, five of whom lived past infancy: Thomas John (b. 1884), Willie (b. 1887), Arthur (b. 1885), Annie Dora (b. 1893) and Benjamin.
On the 1891 census, taken only a few weeks before his birth, Benjamin's family are living at 5 Calmet (?) Street in Everton, Liverpool and his father was described as an engineer's fitter. By the time of the 1901 census they have relocated to 18 Rupert Street; his father now described as a marine engineer.
The family probably moved to Southampton around 1906, and show up living on the 1911 census living at Brae Burn, 23 Hanley Road, Southampton. Benjamin is described as a steward and unmarried and his mother is now a widow--what became of his father is not certain. Living with them also on this census is Titanic crewmen James Toshack and his wife, and steward Edward Brown. Edward may have been friendly with the McMicken family, he and Mrs McMicken both being natives of Anglesey, as he would later give their 1912 address as his when signing on to Titanic (43 Suffolk Avenue)
Benjamin was on board the Titanic for her delivery trip from Belfast to Southampton. When he signed-on again, in Southampton, on 4 April 1912, he gave his address as 43 Suffolk Avenue, Southampton. His last ship had been the Olympic. As second pantryman he received monthly wages of £5. Also serving on board was his brother Arthur.
Benjamin McMicken died in the sinking. His body, if recovered, was never identified. His brother Arthur survived. The following death notice appeared in the Southern Daily Echo (28 April 1912):
McMICKEN--April 15, 1912, at sea, in the disaster of the Titanic, Benjamin Tucker McMicken, 21, the dearly beloved and youngest son of Cecilia McMicken, of 43, Suffolk-avenue, Southampton. Sadly missed by his sorrowing mother, sister and brothers. "Safe in the arms of Jesus."
1. The signing-on sheet in Belfast appears to give his age as 31.
References and Sources
Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
Particulars of Engagement (Belfast), Ulster Folk and Transport Museum (TRANS 2A/45 381)
Gavin Bell, UK