Encyclopedia Titanica

Joseph James Richards

Joseph James Richards 1 was born in Southampton, Hampshire, England in the third quarter of 1882. He was the son of a Welsh father, Henry William Richards (b. 1840 in Newport, Monmouthshire), a bread maker, and an English mother, Eliza Hart (b. 1850 in Southampton) who had married in 1876. His mother had a child from a previous relationship, Julia, but was never married.

Joseph had eight siblings: Henry John (b. 1876), Theresa Eliza (b. 1878), Eliza Laura Jane (b. 1880), Ellen (b. 1884), Anna Alice (b. 1886), William George (b. 1889), Charles (b. 1891) and step-sister Julia (b. 1867)

His family had been living at 14 Spa Road, All Saints, Southampton the year before his birth. On the 1891 census, when Joseph first appears, he and his family are resident at 2 Morses (?) Court, St Mary Southampton. They would move to 54 Bond Street, Southampton by the time of the 1901 census but Joseph is absent, perhaps already at sea. He would again be absent from the 1911 census when his family were living at 34 Belvedere Terrace, Southampton.

Joseph was married in the summer of 1911 to Florence Alice 2 Jones (born circa 1884 in Hampshire). The couple had had their son Joseph Henry Louis Richards Jones a few months previously. It is possible a further child was born towards the start of 1912.

When he signed-on to the Titanic, on 6 April, 1912 Joseph gave his address as 25 Summers Street, (Southampton). His last ship had been the Olympic. As a fireman he received monthly wages of £6.

 Joseph Richards was lost in the sinking. His body, if recovered, was never identified. The following death notice appeared in the Hampshire Independent (unknown date):

RICHARDS--April 15th, 1912, at sea, through the foundering of the s.s. Titanic, Joseph, the dearly beloved husband of Florence Richards, of 25, Summers Street, Northam. In the midst of life we are in death.

He is remembered on the St Augustine's Church Memorial, Southampton.

His father died in 1922 and his mother in 1924, both in Southampton. His widow Florence was remarried in 1913 to William Daniels but what became of her is uncertain, although she may have died in Winchester in the late 1960s.


  1. The Senate crew list gives the first initial as H.
  2. Florence Aline Jones?

References and Sources

United States Senate, Washington 1912. n° 806, Crew List
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Comment and discuss

  1. brenda daniels

    Hi All Researching the career of my grandfather and need to find the ships he served on before the Titanic. The signing on sheet states that he served on the Olympic before the Titanic, but when searching the Olympic crew list on this site, his name is missing.....can anybody help? Kind Regards Brenda

  2. Michael H. Standart

    I tried to find this list but couldn't. Maybe I'm missing the link to the thing. I suspect the list you're looking at would be for the particular voyage the Olympic was on the night the Titanic foundered. If that's the case, then your reletive wouldn't appear there as he simply would not have been on-board the Olympic at that particular time.

  3. brenda daniels

    Joseph was my husband's grandfather. On checking engine crew list no 3 NO 66 he is listed as H RICHARDS.Can any one tell me what the H" stands for.Also there is some confusion on his previous ship,the people above him on the crew list were on the OLYMPIC but his entry has " and not "do" like the rest.He is not listed on the crew list for the Olympic on your web site. Unfortunately I live in the North Of England and visiting Kew is not an option.If any one is going there in the near future I would really appreciate if you could check this for me. KIND REGARDS BRENDA

  4. Paul Lee

    If you know his rough year of birth, you could check

  5. Bob Godfrey

    Brenda, in the original handwritten signature the initial looks to me like a 'J', not 'H'. The mark in the 'previous ship' column is just a short diagonal line, like a tick. Could mean anything, but probably not that he hadn't sailed before as that would have been listed as '1st'. Maybe just an alternative to 'do' by a very busy clerk.

  6. Brian J. Ticehurst

    Brenda Greetings The name on the signing on sheet is Richards, Joseph James and he does not give his previous ship when he signed on. Below is my full print out on him. You will see there are two Mrs. Richards co-habitants - it gets confusing. One is the lady he was living with and the other 'I think' is the cohabitant of another crew member who was living with a lady named Mrs. Richards. If you do have any family names perhaps you can clear this up? best regards Brian Richards, Joseph James. Lived at 25 Summers Street, Northam, Southampton. Occupation - Fireman. 29 years old.... Read full post

  7. brenda daniels

    Thanks all for your speedy replies.Florence was my husband's grandmother the other Richards is no relation.It looks like we'll never know his previous ship but glad to clear up the strange "h" in the name Regards Brenda

Reply Watch Thread

Titanic Crew Summary

Name: Mr Joseph James Richards
Age: 30 years (Male)
Nationality: English
Marital Status: Married to Florence Alice Jones
Last Residence: at 25 Summers Street Southampton, Hampshire, England
Occupation: Fireman
Last Ship: Olympic
Embarked: Southampton on Saturday 6th April 1912
Died in the Titanic disaster (15th April 1912)
Body Not Identified

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