Mr Frank Henry Gosling

Mr Frank Henry Gosling was born in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England on 7 January 1887.

He was the son of Frederick Gosling (b. 1848) and Ellen Eliza Green (b. 1856), natives of Essex and Sussex, respectively who had married in 1878. His father had served in the Royal Navy since 1873, acting as chief petty officer since 1881.

Frank had one surviving sibling from a total of four, his brother Frederick Alfred (b. 1880).

Frank and his family appear on the 1891 census living at 39 St Mary Street in Peterhead, Aberdeenshire. They would eventually return to Portsmouth and the family home by the time of the 1901 census was 125 Albert Road where his father ran a tobacconists; Frank was not present with his family and listed elsewhere as a pupil at the Royal Hospital School in Greenwich, London.

Frank joined the Royal Navy on 17 February 1903 aged 16, although he claimed he was 17, stating his previous occupation as a porter. He was described as standing at 5' 4" and he had brown hair, grey eyes and a fair complexion. His first ship was Northampton and he also served aboard Cleopatra, Benbow, Russell, Victory I, Goliath and Exmouth. His conduct was not glowing and he was shown to have spent numerous long stretches in the cells for his behaviour, which included desertion; this saw his eventual discharge on 27 May 1907, his final ship being Exmouth. It may be surmised that he then joined the merchant service but this is not known.

Frank was absent from the 1911 census; his mother had died in September 1908 and his father was shown living at 3 Glencoe Road, Buckland, Portsmouth with a widow, Louisa Jane Wood, née Cocksedge (b. 1865), his housekeeper; the two were married later that year.

When he signed on to Titanic's maiden voyage on 6 April 1912, Gosling gave his local address as 17 French Street, Southampton. His previous ship had been the Olympic and as a trimmer he could expect monthly wages of £5, 10s.

Frank Gosling died in the sinking and his body, if recovered, was never identified.

His father remained in Portsmouth and died only two years later on 1 May 1914. His brother Frederick, a house painter, married in 1902 to Edith Elizabeth Hooker (b. 1879) and raised four daughters. He died in 1931.

 

 

 

 

 

Credits
Gavin Bell
Bill Wormstedt

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