Miss Stella Anna Sage was born at 253 Queen's Road, Hackney, London, England on 25 July 1891 and was baptised on 9 August the same year in St Mark's Church, Dalston.
She was the daughter of John George Sage (b. 1867), a corn chandler native to Hackney, and Elizabeth Ann Cazaly (b. 1865), a native of Wolverhampton, Staffordshire. Her parents had married in 1890 and went on to have nine children, of whom she was the eldest.
Her siblings were: George John (b. 1892), Douglas Bullen (b. 1893), Frederick (b. 1895), Dorothy Florence (b. 1897), Anthony William (b. 1899), Elizabeth Ada (b. 1901), Constance Gladys (b. 1904) and Thomas Henry (b. 1907).
In the months prior to Stella's birth her parents had been listed on the 1891 census as residents of 253 Queen's Road, Hackney. The family moved to Norfolk around the turn of the century and appeared on the 1901 census living in Gaywood at the New Inn where her father was the publican. By 1911 the family home was 246 Gladstone Street in Peterborough, Northamptonshire and her father was described as a baker whilst she had no occupation.
In April 1911 her father and eldest brother George travelled to Winnipeg, Manitoba where they both worked as cooks with the Central Pacific Railway. After some months, Mr Sage and his son had saved sufficient money to embark out in a venture of their own and he purchased a fruit farm at Jacksonville, Florida, which he intended to cultivate for pecans. A plan was hatched for the entire family to move to Florida and her father returned home to Peterborough in September 1911 followed by her brother two months later.
It was originally intended that the family would travel aboard the Philadelphia but the coal strike forced them to take passage on Titanic instead. After bidding their farewells to many well-wishers the family travelled by train to Southampton and board Titanic on 10 April 1912 as third class passengers (ticket number 2343 which had cost £69, 11s). Stella had been emphatic that she would return to England within a few years to visit and she sent her friend, Mrs Todd of 188 Walpole Street, a postcard which was posted in Queenstown:
Dear Mrs. Todd -
Just a postcard of the boat. I am not sea sick yet and hope I shall not be.
Will write a long letter while on the boat.
Cheer up, I'm coming back soon.
With love Stella.
It is likely that the family was able to reach the deck shortly before the Titanic went down as there are reports that Stella had got into a lifeboat but left it when other members of her family were unable to join her.
The whole family were lost in the sinking; out of the eleven-strong crowd only Anthony William's body was recovered.
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