I read somewhere that Henry John Spinner of Worcester, England, once saved the life of a child who had fallen into a canal. This was a few years previous to his drowning on the Titanic. Does anyone have more information on this?
Answered my own question after finding some notes I made years ago. Henry John Spinner, 31, of Chestnut St, Worcester, was on his way to Gloversville, 200 miles from Worcester, Mass "to seek fresh fortune". His wife Alice and daughter Maud, 3, were to join him when he'd got a job and set up home. He was a glove-cutter by profession, learning his trade at Fownes of Worcester, but had left to join the Royal Marines, serving aboard HMS Orion in China waters during the Russo-Japanese War. He left the Royal Marines 5 or 6 years prior to Titanic. During that time, he returned to the glove-cutting trade in Yeovil, Somerset and Westbury, Wiltshire. When Spinner was 15, he dived fully-clothed into the Worcester Canal and saved a young boy named Knight from drowning. The last his family heard of him was a postcard bearing the picture of Titanic posted in Queenstown. Spinner would have turned 32 on 26 April 1912. A report from the Worcester Evening News at the time read: "Failing to find his name in the list of the rescued, his friends have abandoned all hope. But knowing his brave and fearless character, they do not doubt that he died as a Britin should".
Mr Spinner was heading to Gloversville, New
York, to take up a position at the Fownes
glove cutting facility there. Interesting about
the rescue, as I had not seen the report before.
Thank you for sharing.
Hi,Brian and Iain,
have just found these messages. have been trying to find out for some time who my grandad was due to go to the states with. He was a glove cutter too, and lived near to Henry Spinner. My grandads name being Joseph Alfred Taylor. He had the opportunity to go, but decided against it at the last minute apparently - good for me, otherwise i wouldnt be here!! Now I have discovered who the person was, I am trying to find out anything I can about him or his descendants. If you have any further info I would be grateful.
Thanks a lot
Please bear with me. I've been trying to find the original notes I made about Spinner but do you think I can put my hands on them??? I remember there was a nephew (?) still alive who was a long-term resident of a hotel in Worcester city centre and that's who I'm trying to find for you. As soon as I find the notes, I'll let you know.
thanks a lot. I look forward to hearing from you. I see from your profile that you're in Dudley. I am only in Telford. Did you manage to see the exhibition in Dudley a few years ago which featured chains such as the ones created for the Titanic? (if memory serves me correctly). I couldnt get across, but I do know that one of the survivors attended - possibly Milvina Dean.
Yep, I attended the opening night of the exhibition - 1997 I think it was. I loaned the museum a few books and notes and even did a bit of background painting. Millvina was unable to attend as she was ill. I think she attended a week or so later - I remember her being pictured in the Express and Star with a lifebelt round her neck. No comment. Apart from "tacky".
The chains were made in Netherton, at Hingley's in Washington Street. My Nan was born in Washington Street and she recalls her older sisters telling her about the day the anchors left Netherton bound for Belfast and the Titanic. They may even be on the famous picture of the anchor being pulled by twenty horses.
And I still haven't found them bloody notes. I'll check again this weekend.