Encyclopedia Titanica

Henry Ketchley

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, on 17 November 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 on 13 August 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.

It emerged in 1879 that Henry Penfold was already married to Elizabeth Harriett Spring (1849-1875) when he married Emma; he was charged with Bigamy and sentenced to prison. Hence he was absent from the household for the 1881 census, and his wife Emma 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). Ada had been married previously, in 1898 to James Macduff Grant. A daughter, Gladys Ada Grant was born on 27 January 1902 however James had passed away on 15 November 1901 aged 23.

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.  They had a son Christopher, born early 1912.

Harry 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.

His step-daughter Gladys married Cecil Greenham in 1926 and died in 1966.

His son Christopher died 23 November 1955.

Newspaper Articles

Bucks Herald (5 April 1879) An Uxbridge Bigamy Case

Documents and Certificates

1881, 1891, 1901, 1911 Census (England)
Agreement and Account of Crew, National Archives, London; BT100/259
Titanic Crew Particulars of Engagement (Belfast), Ulster Folk and Transport Museum (TRANS 2A/45 381)
General Register Office: Index of Births, Marriages and Deaths
(1912) Register of Births, Marriages and Deaths of Passengers and Seamen at Sea, National Archives, London; BT334/52 & 334/53
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Vyvienne Mathews

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Titanic Crew Summary

Name: Mr Henry Ketchley
Age: 36 years and 3 days (Male)
Physical Features:
Nationality: English
Marital Status: Married to Ada Mary Grant
Occupation: Saloon Steward
Last Ship: Olympic
Embarked: Belfast on Monday 1st April 1912
Died in the Titanic disaster (15th April 1912)
Body Not Identified

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