Reginald Charles Coleridge

Reginald Charles Coleridge

Mr Reginald Charles Coleridge was born in Teignmouth, Devon, England in the second half of 1883.

He was the son of Charles Cotton Coleridge (b. 1856), a cabinet maker, and Nancy Wescott (b. 1857), both Devon natives who had married in 1880. The eldest of three children, Reginald had two sisters: Frances May (b. 1892) and Edith (b. 1893) who had both been born in Norfolk where Reginald seems to have spent a great portion of his life. His mother died in 1900.

Reginald and his father appear on the 1901 census living at 22 Park Road, Walsoken, Norfolk and his father and sisters on the 1911 census living at 5 Park Road in the same district.

On the 1911 census he was shown as staying at the home of Rev. Alexander Chorley Crosfield (b. 1867) who lived at the Vicarage in Hartford, Huntingdonshire.  Reginald was then described as an incorporated advertising consultant. In 1912 Reginald was still a resident of Hartford (though working in London), where he was active in the Boy Scouts and member of 1st Sudbury Troop.

Rev. A.C. Crosfield
Reverend  A C. Crosfield
(Courtesy of All Saints Church, Hartford)

Coleridge had been due to travel to America on another steamer but had his passage transferred to the Titanic as a result of the coal strike. He was en route to Detroit, Michigan on business, with a holiday planned in Canada afterward with Crosfield. He boarded the Titanic at Southampton as a second class passenger (ticket number 14263, which cost £10, 10s).

While approaching Queenstown he wrote a letter to his father:

We are very comfortable indeed – there is nothing wanting, except the use of the gymnasium and swimming bath, which is restricted to first-class passengers. The sea is rather rough for small boats, but our great ship towers so high out of the water that the sea looks quite flat and calm. She rises and sinks hardly at all, and the only noticeable sensation is the jelly-like quivering caused by the ceaseless throbbing of the engines. I have had a jolly warm sea-water bath this morning, and am presently going on deck to us enter Queenstown. - Peterborough Standard, 20 April 1912, Passenger from Hartford

Coleridge was lost in the sinking and his body, if recovered, was never identified.  Crosfield only learned of Coleridge's fate when he arrived in Nova Scotia a few days after the disaster.

His estate, valued at £455, 14s, 7d, was administered to Reverend Crosfield on 10 June 1912.  

Crosfield left the parish of Hartford in 1913 and moved to South Africa, he died in Surrey on 19 October 1934. Reginald's own father Charles died in London in 1929.

Reginald is remembered on a tablet in All Saints Church, Hartford, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire and by a silver cruet and communion flagon, now in the care of the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge.

References and Sources

All Saints Church Hartford, History
Yorkshire Evening Post
, 20 May 1912,"Gone Home"

Newspaper Articles

Cambridge Independent Press (19 April 1912) HUNTS. VICAR'S LOSS
Cambridge Independent Press (19 April 1912) Mr. R. C. Coleridge Missing
Peterborough Standard (20 April 1912) Passenger from Hartford
Biggleswade Chronicle (26 April 1912) Boy Scouts
Peterborough Standard (5 October 1912) The late Mr R.C. Coleridge
[Communion flagon presented in memory of Titanic victim]

Documents and Certificates

(1912) Reginald Coleridge : Probate Report


Coleridge Family Information
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Encyclopedia Titanica (2021) Reginald Charles Coleridge (ref: #380, last updated: 28th July 2021, accessed 28th July 2021 12:00:17 PM)

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