Mr Henry Allen (Fireman) was born in Southampton, Hampshire, England in late 1881/early 1882. His birth was registered in the first quarter of 1882 and he was baptised on 10 February that year in St James' Church, Southampton.
He was the son of William Allen (b. 1847), a coal porter, and Clara Biles (b. 1855), natives of Portsmouth and Southampton respectively and he had three known siblings: William Henry (b. 1875), Annie (b. 1877) and Edwin (b. 1879).
Prior to Henry's birth his family were recorded on the 1881 census living at 23 King Street, Southampton. When Henry and his family appear on the 1891 census they are residing at 3 St George's Court, Southampton.
He was married in 1900 to Cecilia Reid (b. 1879), a native of Gosport. By April 1912 the couple had nine children together, six surviving infancy: Emily (b. 1900), Annie Cecilia (1901-1988, later Mrs John Wilson), William Henry (b. 1903), Charles Edward (1906-1984), Alfred James (1909-1989) and Clara Elizabeth (1910-2003, later Mrs George Ackland).
On the 1901 census a 19-year-old Henry is living with his wife and first child Emily at 6 Mount Street, Southampton. On the 1911 census the family are at 3 Wickham Court, French Street, Vyse Lane, Southampton but Henry is not present. He instead was listed as a prisoner at HM Prison on Romsey Road, Winchester, his misdemeanour unknown.
When he signed on to the Titanic on 6 April 1912 he gave his local address as 3 French Street, Southampton. His previous ship had been the Oceanic and as a fireman he would receive pay of £6 per month. Also serving aboard was his brother-in-law Robert Thomas Reid, a trimmer, and James Mason, his lodger.
Henry Allen died in the sinking and his body was recovered by the Mackay-Bennett and buried at Fairview Cemetery, Halifax, Nova Scotia on 8 May 1912.
NO. 145 - MALE - ESTIMATED AGE, 35 - HAIR AND MOUSTACHE, LIGHT
CLOTHING - Blue coat and vest; striped trousers; dungaree trousers; grey trousers.
© Bill Fowler, Canada.
His family would benefit from the Titanic Relief Fund as Class G dependents. Henry's widow Cecilia had been pregnant at the time of the sinking and gave birth to a daughter named Eliza on 13 August 1912.
Mansion House Titanic Relief Fund
Allen, Cecilia. Widow. Allen, Emily (child). Allen, Ann C. (child). Allen, William H. (child). Allen, Charles J. (child). Allen, Alfred J. (child). Allen, Clara Elizabeth, Allen, Eliza, (child). All class G dependents.
Cecilia was remarried in 1914 to William F. Dollery (1871-1937), a former merchant seaman, and would have further children. She died in 1948 in Southampton. Henry's last surviving child Clara died in 2003 whilst his posthumously born daughter Eliza (later Mrs Richard Titcombe) died in 1988, both in Southampton.
References and SourcesWhite Star Line (1912.) Record of Bodies and Effects (Passengers and Crew S.S. "Titanic") Recovered by Cable Steamer "MacKay Bennett" Including Bodies Buried at Sea and Bodies Delivered at Morgue in Halifax, N.S.
Mansion House Titanic Relief Fund Booklets and Minute Book.