Encyclopedia Titanica

Robert James Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer (Unidentified Source).

Robert James Sawyer was born in Southampton, Hampshire, England on 21 August 1880.

He was the son of Frank Sawyer (b. 1845), a coachbuilder and carpenter, and Hannah Spreadbury (b. 1845), both Hampshire-natives of Southampton and Andover, respectively who had married in 1865.

Robert had ten known siblings: Frank (b. 1867), Walter (b. 1868), Albert (b. 1870), William (b. 1872), Bessie (b. 1874), Alice (b. 1876), Rose (b. 1882), Percival (b. 1886), Charles (b. 1887) and Arthur (b. 1891).

For reasons unknown Robert is not listed on the 1881 census but his family are recorded as living at 6 King's Terrace, All Saints, Southampton. When he finally appears, on the 1891 census, he and his family are residing at 30 Northcote Road, Springbourne, Hampshire. Back in Southampton for the 1901 census, Robert and his family were now living in Shirley at 81 Waterloo Road and Robert was described as a cycle enameller.

His mother passed away in 1904 followed by his father in 1908, both in Southampton.

Robert had been married in Southampton in 1903 to Adelaide Rosina Callen (b. 28 November 1878 in Southampton, daughter of William and Mary Ann Callen, née Glasspool) and the couple had four sons: Robert Arthur (1904-1973), Frank (1906-1977), William (1907-1988) and Percival (1909-1987). The family appear on the 1911 census living at 25 Bevois Street, Southampton and Robert is described as a lamp lighter at the gasworks.

When he signed on to the Titanic in Southampton on 6 April 1912, Robert gave his address as 25 Bevois Street, (Southampton). He had transferred from the Olympic. As a window cleaner he received monthly wages of £4.

Sawyer died in the sinking. His body, if recovered, was never identified. The plight of the children he left behind was later reported in the national press and his family later benefitted from the Titanic Relief Fund.

His widow Adelaide never remarried and remained living at 25 Bevois Street, Southampton where she died on 19 February 1938 aged 59.

Sawyer son
Sawyer's three year old son
(Daily Sketch)

References and Sources

Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
United States Senate, Washington 1912. n° 806, Crew List
Hermann Söldner (ed.) (2000) RMS Titanic: Passenger and Crew List 10 April 1912-15 April 1912. ä wie Ärger Verlag.
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Gavin Bell
Family of Robert James Sawyer

Comment and discuss

  1. Muskateercs

    How do we locate the reports??

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Titanic Crew Summary

Name: Mr Robert James Sawyer
Age: 31 years 7 months and 25 days (Male)
Nationality: English
Marital Status: Married to Adelaide Rosina Callen
Last Residence: at 25 Bevois StreetSouthampton, Hampshire, England
Occupation: Window Cleaner
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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