Francis Ford was born in Great Warford, Macclesfield, Cheshire, England in early 1868 and he was later baptised on 2 February that same year in Alderley, Cheshire.
He was the son of John Ford (b. 1828), a domestic gardener, and Ellen Goodwin (b. 1832). His father was originally from Derbyshire and his mother from Gawsworth, Cheshire and they had married in 1849. Francis had four known siblings, all brothers: James (b. 1850), Thomas (b. 1852), Samuel (b. 1858) and John Henry (b. 1865).
Francis first appears on the 1871 census. At that time he and his family were living at an illegible address in Great Warford. The family had moved to Faulkner Lane in Great Warford by the time of the 1881 census but Francis was absent and listed elsewhere, aged 13, as a servant at Summer Lane, Great Warford, the home of a farmer, a Mr Nathaniel Priestner and his wife. Francis perhaps went to sea within the next few years and would be absent from both the 1891 and 1901 censuses, his parents by then living in Wheathamstead, Hertfordshire.
Francis was married in Graveney Church, Tooting, London on 22 February 1902 to Eliza Booker (b. 1866 in Dunsfold, Surrey) and he was then described as a ships' steward. The couple would have only one child, a son named John Francis (b. 12 February 1903 in London).
Francis was again absent by the time of the 1911 census but his wife and son were listed as living at The Common, Dunsfold, Godalming, the home of his father-in-law George Booker, a bootmaker.
When he signed-on to the Titanic, on 4 April 1912, Francis gave his address as 66 Oxford Street, (Southampton), a lodgings address. His last ship had been the Olympic. As a bedroom steward he received monthly wages of £3, 15s.
Francis Ford died in the sinking. His body, if recovered, was never identified.
His widow Eliza never remarried and later moved northward to Manchester. She died there in early 1940.
His son John Francis was married in 1930 to Ann Burke (1900-1969) and the couple raised a large family. He died in Manchester in 1990.
References and Sources
Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
Gavin Bell, UK