Encyclopedia Titanica

David Matherson

© Bob Knuckle, Canada

Mr David John Matherson (or Mathieson) 1 was born in 1878 in Thurso, Caithness, Scotland as David John Mathieson Steven.

He was the son of John Mathison (born c. 1852), a general labourer and Christina Steven (born c .1850), both natives of Thurso.

They married in 1879 at Thurso, indicating David was born ''out of wedlock,'' before his parents were married and he carried his mother's last name at birth rather than his father's.

He had five known siblings: Williamina (b. 1880), John (b. 1883), Dinah (b. 1886), James (b. 1885) and Margaret "Peggy" (b. 1887).

David appears on the 1881 and 1891 censuses living with his family at Duke Street in Thurso, his mother having passed away by the time of the latter record. He would be absent from the 1901 census, perhaps at sea, but his father and sisters Dinah and Margaret were shown living at a house on Wilson Street, Thurso.

When he signed-on to the Titanic on 6 April 1912 Mathison gave his address as 20 Everton Street, Southampton, his age as 30 and his previous ship as Adriatic. As an able seaman he could expect monthly wages of £5.

David Mathison died in the sinking. His body was recovered by the MacKay Bennett (#192) and was buried at Fairview Cemetary, Halifax Nova Scotia on 8 May 1912. He had been identified by his tattoos.


CLOTHING - Blue serge suit; ship's jersey and black boots.

TATTOO - On left arm: "D. Matherson" over cross; flag; coat of arms.  Above right arm; clasped hands; anchor and "C. M.".

EFFECTS - Pipe; knife



David John Steven Mathieson (also listed Matheson or Matherson; he was listed David John Math(ieson) Steven in the birth register)

Titanic Crew Summary

Name: Mr David Matherson
Nationality: Scottish
Marital Status: Single
Last Residence: at 20 Everton Street Southampton, Hampshire, England
Occupation: Able Seaman
Last Ship: Adriatic
Embarked: Southampton on Saturday 6th April 1912
Died in the Titanic disaster (15th April 1912)
Body recovered by: Mackay-Bennett (No. 192)
Buried: Fairview Lawn Cemetery, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, on Wednesday 8th May 1912

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References and Sources

Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
Colonel Archibald Gracie (1913) The Truth about the Titanic. New York, Mitchell Kennerley
United States Senate, Washington 1912. n° 806, Crew List

Newspaper Articles

Highland News (20 April 1912) Men Who Died Like Heroes


Speedy Interment of Many Unidentified Bodies in Halifax Becomes Necessary
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