Mr Henry John Spinner

Harry Spinner

Harry Spinner  expand to show Harry with his father George and wife Harriet and daughter maude aged c.18m
Courtesy of Carol Roice

Mr Henry John Spinner was born in Worcester, Worcestershire, England on 26 April 1880 and was later baptised on 27 June that year.

He was the youngest son of George Spinner (1843-1924), a glove cutter, and Ellen Taylor (1844-1904), both Worcester natives who had married on 4 September 1864 in St Clement's Church in Worcester.

He had eight known siblings, several of whom died in infancy: Emma (b. 1865)1, George (b. 1867), Annie (b. 1869), Charles (b. 1870), Ellen (b. 1871), Elizabeth (b. 1872), William Albert (b. 1875) and Edith (b. 1882).

Henry first appears on the 1881 census living at Lower Cheshunt Street in Claines, Worcestershire but would be living at 29 Friar Street in St Helen's, Worcestershire by the time of the 1891 census where his father was the innkeeper of the Crown Inn. His family would later move back to their Lower Cheshunt Street address. As a young man aged 15 he rescued a young boy from drowning when he dived into a Worcester canal fully clothed and dragged the boy to safety. He was an excellent swimmer having won both trophies and medals for swimming.

Henry served in the Royal Marines during the Russo-Japanese War when he was stationed on the HMS Orion in the China Seas. He was listed on the 1901 census as an unmarried soldier based in Eastney Barracks in Portsmouth, Hampshire. He later became glove cutter, like his father before him.

Henry was married in his native Worcester in 1907 to Harriet Alice Walker (b. 1880 in Worcestershire, the daughter of Alfred and Harriet Walker) and they had one child, a daughter, Alice Maud Winifred, who was born late the following year. The family settled in Yeovil, Somerset, perhaps shortly after Henry and Harriet were married, and appeared  on the 1911 census living at Glenville Road, Yeovil. He was reportedly a member of the local football team.

Spinner boarded the Titanic at Southampton as a third class passenger (ticket number 369943 which cost £8, 1) and he was headed for Gloversville, New York to take up a position at a glove cutting factory there. 

Henry Spinner died in the sinking and his body, if recovered, was never identified.

His widow Harriet was never remarried and in later years lived at Cambersley Road, Worcester. She died on 23 September 1949 aged 69.

Henry's daughter Alice was later married, becoming Mrs Cecil J. Smith. She also remained in Worcester and died in 1968.


  1. Harry's eldest sister, Emma, emigrated to New Zealand at the age of 18.  She went with her mother's brother, Walter Taylor and his 10 year old daughter.  They travelled on the sailing ship Waitangi out of Tilbury on 25 October 1883, arriving in Canterbury on 13 January 1884.


Henry John Spinner

Articles and Stories

Worcester Journal (1912) 

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Gavin Bell, UK
Pat Cook, USA
Steve Coombes, UK
Peter Engberg, Sweden
Carol Roice, UK
Alan Tucker, UK

References and Sources

Worcester Journal April 27, 1912, Article
British Census 1881
Contract Ticket List, White Star Line 1912 (National Archives, New York; NRAN-21-SDNYCIVCAS-55[279]).
Birmingham Daily Gazette, April 16 1912 - April 29 inc.
Search archive British newspapers online

Link and cite this biography

(2019) Henry John Spinner Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #1233, updated 21st November 2019 22:29:08 PM)