Mr Michael Joseph Rogers

Titanic Saloon Steward from Dublin, Ireland

Mr Michael Joseph Rogers was born at 41 York Street, close to St Stephen's Green in Dublin, Ireland on 2 June 1885,1 later baptised in St Andrew's Church on 10 July that year.

He was the son of Michael Rogers (b. 1857) and Mary Anne Delaney (b. 1859) who were married in St Michael and John Church, Dublin on 30 January 1882. His father had various professions listed over different records, to include salesman, bath attendant and warehouse keeper.

He had two siblings: John Joseph Mary (b. 25 March 1883) and Martha Florence Mary (b. 6 December 1897). 

Hailing from a Roman Catholic family that were fluent in both Irish and English, Michael appears on the 1901 census of Ireland as a 15-year-old living at 39 Clarendon Street in Dublin's south side, living with his siblings and by-then widowed father. His mother had passed away aged 40 in a Dublin hospice on 9 November 1899 as a result of tuberculosis.  

The family lived at 39 Clarendon Street for several years; that was their address when, on 27 July 1905, Michael's father died from cardiac failure, aged 46. 

Perhaps with few prospects left for him in Ireland, the younger Michael later moved to Winchester, Hampshire, England where a close friend of his mother's lived, Mrs Thomas Harris, née Ann Carroll, a Dublin-born lady who had married an Englishman and settled in Hampshire where she raised her family. Michael was later engaged to be married to the Harris' eldest daughter, Mary Agnes (b. 1 July 1893), a seamstress.

Michael is shown on the 1911 census as a resident of the Harris household, 13 Greenhill Avenue, Winchester and at the time gave his age as 23 and profession as a ship's steward. His brother John was still living in Dublin, shown on the census as a resident of 39 Stephen's Street where he was described as a commercial traveller. 

It is understood that Michael brought his sister Martha across to England and she was shown on the 1911 census residing at 12 Greenhill Avenue, Winchester, a house neighbouring the Harris household and belonging to an elderly Canadian widow, Mrs Mary Cuell. Michael would continue to send his siblings a stipend and his sister later entered a convent in Winchester.

When Michael signed-on to the Titanic, on 4 April 1912, he gave his address as 13 Greenhill Avenue, Winchester. His last ship had been the Olympic and as a saloon steward he received monthly wages of £3, 15s. Also serving on the Titanic with him was his fiancée's younger brother Edward Mathew Harris.

Michael Rogers and Edward Harris both died in the sinking. Their bodies, if recovered, were never identified.

Michael's brother John later sued the White Star Line for the loss of his brother. He and his sister Martha were awarded £80 a piece on top of their £20 each from various Titanic relief funds.

A TITANIC DISASTER CLAIM

After hearing the fact stated in a case arising out of the loss of the Titanic, the Recorder of Dublin yesterday allowed the matter to stand to enable further particulars to be furnished.

John Rogers, described as a sweep's helper, residing in Stephen's street, Dublin, and Martha Rogers, who is at present in a convent at Winchester, sought to obtain compensation from the Oceanic Steam Navigation Company for the loss of their brother, Michael Rogers, who was a second class steward on the Titanic, and went down with the vessel.

Mr Kinahan (instructed by Messrs Corrigan and Corrigan), for the applicants, said the solicitors of the White Star Line admitted partial dependence. Counsel submitted that there was total dependency on the part of Martha Rogers, who is only 15 years of age. Deceased's salary was £2, 9s, 3d a week and there had been an offer of £150. Deceased had been in the habit of sending money to John, and he had brought the girl over to England, and placed her in the convent, and, before taking his last ill-fated voyage, had arranged for a payment of a further sum of money to her. Applicants had got nothing from the Titanic fund, which, it was explained, had not yet been distributed.

His Lordship thought applicants ought to get £200.

An adjournment was granted on the suggestion of Mr E. Fitzgerald (instructed my Messrs D. and T. Fitzgerald), for respondents, in order that definite particulars might be obtained on the question of wages and also to the likelihood of anything being obtained from the Titanic Fund. The Recorder said if these people would not get any benefit from the Fund he would be inclined to increase the amount offered to £200, but if he came to the conclusion that they would benefit he would leave it as it was. - Irish Independent, 9 October 1912

His sister Martha is known to have entered a convent in Winchester and remained in England, possibly taking Holy Orders. By 1939 she was a children's nurse in the Royal Hants County Hospital. She died in Bath in 1948 aged 50.

John is believed to have remained a bachelor living in Dublin where he died in the 1950s, possibly 1956(2). Details about his later life remain uncertain.

Michael's fiancée Mary Agnes was later married to Albert Jobling (1896-1961), a maintenance engineer, and had a daughter Eileen Winifred (b. 5 July 1920). She died in Hertfordshire in 1976.

 

Articles and Stories

 

Credits

Gavin Bell, UK

Notes

  1. His birth registration gives the date as 2 June but his baptismal record as 2 July. 
  2. A John Rogers, a chimney sweep and of the correct age, died unmarried on 9 June 1956. 

References and Sources

Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
The Irish Independent, unknown date, 1912, A Titanic Disaster Claim
Search archive Irish newspapers online

Link and cite this biography

(2018) Michael Joseph Rogers Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #2087, updated 21st September 2018 03:06:58 AM)
URL : https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/titanic-victim/michael-rogers.html

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