Mr Henry Ketchley (Saloon Steward) known as "Harry", was born in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England on 12 April 1876; when his birth was registered his name was given as Henry Penford.
Harry was the son of Emma Angelina Ketchley, née Carter (1846-1923), a native of Middlesex, and Henry Penford (b. 1849), a native of Southampton. Emma Angelina Carter was first married, in 1866, to Maurice Alfred Smith Ketchley (b. 1844 in Milford, Hampshire) who was in the service of the Royal Navy. Together they had at least one child, Maurice Arthur, the following year. Maurice Snr would die in April 1868 in unknown circumstances. His widow took to needlework to support she and her son before she was remarried in Portsmouth in 1871 to Henry Penford, a shoe maker as per the 1871 census. Together they had three known children: Alice (b. 1872), Frances (b. 1874) and Harry.
What became of Henry Penford is not clear and by the time of the 1881 census he was absent from the household and his wife Emma had reverted to using the name Ketchley. On said census Emma--now described as a widow and a charwoman--and her three children were listed as living at 67 Gloucester Street, Portsea, Hampshire.
By the time of the 1891 census Emma Ketchley would now described herself as married and a charwoman and was living as a lodger with her daughter Alice at Beatrice Road, Portsea. Harry was listed elsewhere at 26 High Street, Southampton a Hotel where he was described as a waiter and aged 15. On the 1901 census Harry and his mother were lodgers at 39 Olinda (?) Street, and Harry was described as a domestic for the Royal Navy.
Harry had joined the Navy on 24 September 1902, initially serving aboard Victory II. Other ships he served upon included: Sovereign, Trafalgar, Revenge, Duke of Wellington, Australia, Resolution and Prince George, among others. Upon his discharge on 6 July 1905 his last ship was Sapphire II. With an excellent record of conduct, he stood at 5' 3½" and had light brown hair, blue eyes and a fair complexion.
Harry was married in Portsmouth in mid-1903 to Ada Mary Grant (b. 1876 in Portsmouth). The couple had had a daughter the previous year, Gladys Ada. On the 1911 census Harry and his family were resident at 40 Northcote Road, Portswood, Southampton and he gave his profession as a Saloon Steward on the SS Adriatic.
He initially signed-on to the Titanic in Belfast for her delivery trip to Southampton. When he signed-on again, on 4 April 1912, he gave his address as 14 Northcote Road, (Southampton). His last ship had been the Olympic. As a saloon steward he received monthly wages of £3, 15s. Whilst aboard he celebrated his 36th birthday.
Harry Ketchley died in the sinking. His body, if recovered, was never identified.
His widow Ada never remarried and died in Portsmouth on 20 July 1958. What became of his daughter Gladys is not clear.
Particulars of Engagement (Belfast), Ulster Folk and Transport Museum (TRANS 2A/45 381)
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(2017) Henry Ketchley Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #1950, accessed 26th April 2017 02:06:14 AM)
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