Encyclopedia Titanica

Ewart Sydenham Burr

Ewart Sydenham Burr
Ewart Sydenham Burr

Ewart Sydenham Burr was born in Gloucester, Gloucestershire, England on 13 July 1883 and later baptised in the Bishopston Congregational Church in Bristol on 18 November that year. 

He was the son of Francis Harry Burr (1857-1933), an oil and coalman, and Catherine Anne Maria Sydenham (1859-1935). His father and mother were from Banbury, Oxfordshire and Clifton, Bristol, respectively and had married in Gloucestershire in 1881.

Ewart was one of six children, his siblings being: Reginald Francis (b. 1882), Cecil Hall (b. 1884), Harold Percy (b. 1886), Amy Gladys (b. 1888) and Clarence Douglas (b. 1891).

Ewart first appears on the 1891 census and at that time he and his family were living at 137 Westgate Street in Gloucester, Gloucestershire. The family relocated to Scotland and show up on the 1901 census living at 154 Nithsdale Road, Pollockshields, Glasgow where his father was by then described as a branch manager in a photography store whilst Ewart, then aged 17, was described as a hosier's assistant. He may have left this profession behind soon after and possibly spent time living in Canada around 1903. Also around that time his family left Scotland and settled in Southampton, Hampshire. 

Ewart was married in Southampton in 1910 to his namesake Ethel Alice Amelia Burr (b. 21 November 1885 in Southampton, daughter of Frank and Alice Burr, the latter née Adams). The couple had one son, Cecil Ewart who was welcomed on 5 December 1910.

Ewart, his wife and son appear on the 1911 census living at 142 Millbrook Road, Freemantle, Southampton, the home of his wife's uncle, Christopher Phillisbrook and his family; Burr was described at that time as an assurance agent.

When he signed-on to the Titanic on 4 April 1912 Burr gave his address as 48 Above Bar, Southampton, the home address of his mother and father, although he is believed to have lived at 34 Victoria Road in Southampton with his wife and son. His previous ship had been the Oceanic and as a first class steward he received monthly wages of £3 15s. 

He wrote a letter to his wife which he posted when the Titanic touched at Queenstown on 11 April 1912. In it he describes working in the first class saloon and serving at the Countess of Rothes' table.

Ewart Burr died in the sinking and his body, if recovered, was never identified. Ethel Burr received word of his death by telegram on 19 April:

Much Regret Burr not Saved

Ewart's widow Ethel never remarried and remained in Southampton, later working as a cashier and living with her elderly mother on Portsmouth Road. In her advanced years she moved to the Calmore area of the city where she remained for the rest of her life. Ethel died on 4 January 1983 aged 97, having been a widow for over seventy years. She left an estate valued at £25,000.

Ewart's son Cecil later worked as an electrician; in 1939 he married Gwendoline Sandy (b. 1913) and raised a family, living in Hampshire for the remainder of his life where he passed away in 1996.



References and Sources

1891-1911 Census
Southern Daily Echo, 28 March 1998 Titanic: A Voyage into History
Marriages, births, deaths and injuries that have occurred on board during the voyage (PRO London, BT 100/259-260) and White Star Line (1912.)
Search archive online

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Titanic Crew Summary

Name: Mr Ewart Sydenham Burr
Age: 28 years 9 months and 2 days (Male)
Nationality: English
Marital Status: Married to Ethel Alice Amelia Burr
Last Residence: at 48 Above Bar Southampton, Hampshire, England
Last Ship: Oceanic
Embarked: Southampton on Thursday 4th April 1912
Died in the Titanic disaster (15th April 1912)
Body Not Recovered

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