Mr Johan Svensson was born 19 May 1837 1 in Kulltorp, Jönköping County, Jönköping, Sweden. He was the son of Sven Magnusson (born 9 March 1805 at Anderstorp) and Martha Larsdotter (born in March 1802 in Refteled) who had married 4 March 1831 in Anderstorp parish, Jönköping County.
He had apparently been christened the same day as he was born at the parish church in Anderstorp. His brothers and sisters were Magnus, b. 15 April 1832, Johanna Carolina, b. 5 October 1835, Lovisa, b. 9 March 1840, and twins Maria and Nicolaus, b. 21 October 1845.
He was a farmer, in 1912 living at Nennesmo Korsgård in Reftele, Jönköping’s County, Sweden. He had married Brita Lisa Börjesdotter on 25 May 1860 (in Reftele?); she was born 11 April 1837.
They had several children; Maria Kristina, b. 20 March 1861, Amandus, b. 20 July 1866 (he later went by ''Johan Ekström'' a fellow victim of the sinking of the Titanic), Janne Leander, b. 22 August 1870, Karl Agard August, b. 14 May 1874, Emma Lovisa, b. 29 August 1878,Oskar Fritiof, b. 22 July 1882, Fredrik Oskar, b. 14 May 1874, a stillborn son b. 22 July 1882 (Oskar's twin), and possibly two more daughters (Mrs. Johan A. Larson and Mrs. Olaf Swanberg). In the late 1890s their grandson Viktor, b. 24 May 1886, also lived with them.
Their daughter Emma Lovisa emigrated to New Jersey on 2 March 1896; Maria Kristina seems to have left for America before Maria Kristina, later living at 165 Chatham Street, New Haven, Connecticut. Their son Amandus, i. e. John Ekström, emigrated to South Dakota in 1890, Janne Leander emigrated 24 February 1892 and Oskar emigrated 6 November 1902. Johan Svensson’s wife passed away 6 February 1912 and after the death of his wife, he was accompanying his son Johan Ekström to Effington Rut, South Dakota. They were both lost in the sinking.
Johan was widowed when his wife Brita died on 2 February 1912, leaving him with few relatives left in Sweden. His son Johan returned from South Dakota to bring him back to America, a move he was reluctant to make and he apparently wept at leaving his home country.
Father and son boarded the Titanic at Southampton as third class passengers (he on ticket number 347060 which cost £7, 15s, 6d ). Johan senior was the oldest person aboard the Titanic.
Both Johan and his son died in the sinking and their bodies, if recovered, were never identified.
His daughter Maria lived in Hartford, Connecticut for the rest of her life and died on 10 June 1934.