Mr Albert Edward Coleman

Mr Albert Edward Coleman 1 was born in Hampstead, London, England in on 23 December 1883 and he was baptised on 29 June 1884 in Holy Trinity Church, Hampstead.

He was the son of Joseph Coleman (1858-1918) and Fanny Leverton (1860-?). His father was a native of Ketton, Rutland and his mother from Boston, Lincolnshire and they were married in London on 6 May 1883.

Albert had five known siblings: Harry (b. 1885), Frank (b. 1886), George (b. 1888), Ada (b. 1890) and Alice (b. 1891).

On the 1891 census Albert was shown living with his family at 33 Fairfax Mews, Hampstead, London and his father was described as a coachman and groom. On the 1901 census Albert and his sibling George were living with their paternal aunt and uncle Thomas and Sarah Burrows at The Green, Ketton, Rutland. Albert, then aged 17, was described as a pageboy.

What became of Albert's mother is not clear but she apparently died sometime prior to 1896. 

His father was remarried in 1896 to London-native Jane Thompson (b. 1868) and together they had three children: Sidney Joseph (b. 1903), Philip Edward (b. 1906) and Jack (b. 1910). He is listed on the 1901 census living and working in Parkstone, Dorset and by 1911 he was operating a public house, The Black House in Poole. He died in Poole on 30 June 1918.

Albert first went to sea in the Royal Navy on 14 February 1897 aged just 13, although he stated he was three years older. His first ship was the Impregnable before he went on to serve aboard  Lion, Agincourt, Magnificent, Pembroke I, Wildfire and Encounter. His final service was aboard  Dido and he was discharged on 18 February 1908. Of generally good character, he stood at 5' 2½" and had brown hair, blue eyes and a fair complexion.

With his address being given as "on the high seas", Albert was married in St Dunstan and All Saints Church, Stepney, London on 20 February 1910 to Harriett Seagrove Heather (b. 1879 in Grimsby, Lincolnshire); she was the daughter of domestic butler John Heather and the former Jemima Holden. 

Marriage record
Albert and Harriett's marriage record

Albert and Harriett's firstborn Albert Edward was welcomed in Southampton on 22 March 1911; the small family appear on the 1911 census living at 2 Myrtle Bank, Oak Tree Road, Bitterne, Southampton, with the elder Albert being described as a ship's steward.

When he signed-on to the Titanic on 4 April 1912 Coleman gave his address as Oak Tree Road, Bitterne Park. His previous ship had been the Oceanic and as a saloon steward he received monthly wages of £3, 15s.

Albert Coleman died in the sinking and his body, if recovered, was never identified. He is remembered on a family grave at the Hollybrook Cemetery, Shirley, Hampshire.

COLEMAN--Albert. Aged 28, dearly loved husband of Harriett S. Coleman, 2, Myrtle Bank, Bitterne Park. - Southern Daily Echo, 4 May 1912

Coleman became a father again, although posthumously; his widow Harriett gave birth to a son named George Albert on 2 August 1912. 

Harriet Coleman continued to live in Oak Tree Road but did not remarry, eventually passing away on 7 March 1929. Her estate worth £239, 8s, 8d was left to her unmarried sisters Alice and Elizabeth Heather.

Albert's firstborn son Albert Edward later worked for the Post Office and was married in 1936 to Veronica Pearse (b. 22 April 1913). By 1939 they were living in Winchester but he eventually died in Lewes, Sussex in 1997. 

Albert's posthumously-born son George Albert later worked as a carpenter and lived for a time in Dorset. He died in Salisbury, Wiltshire on 23 October 1991.


  1. Name registered as "Albert Edwin Coleman" in Hampstead in last quarter of 1883; he would be listed as "Albert Edward Coleman" on available future records.

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Gavin Bell, UK

References and Sources

Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
Search archive British newspapers online

Link and cite this biography

Encyclopedia Titanica (2020) Albert Edward Coleman (ref: #1809, last updated: 1st March 2020, accessed 28th June 2020 12:31:13 PM)