Mr Stephen James Davis

Mr Stephen James Davis was born in Drypool, Sculcoates, Hull, Yorkshire, England on 20 March 1873.

He was the son of George Davis (b. 1849 in Winton, Wiltshire) and Rebecca Streets (b. 1845 in Cork, Ireland) who had married in Hampshire in 1867. His father was a Corporal in the Royal Marines and as such the family appear to have moved around frequently, spending periods in Queenstown, Cork; Hull, Dorset and Hampshire.

Stephen had nine known siblings: George (b. 1870), Amelia (b. 1871), William (b. 1875), Kate (b. 1877), Henry (b. 1880), Frederick (b. 1882), Rebecca Agnes (b. 1883), John (b. 1884), and Albert (b. 1888).

He appears on the 1881 census with his family whilst living at 17 Cobden Street, Mill Lane, Alverstoke, Hampshire, the family having moved to Hampshire from Hull around 1878. He is not present with his family on the 1891 census but his family are listed as living at the George Inn, Melcombe Regis, Weymouth, Dorset, his father now retired from the Royal Marines and working as a licensed victualler.

Davis had joined the Royal Navy at age 15, commencing service on 24 July 1888 as a deck boy aboard Boscawen. He would also serve aboard Shannon, Vivid, Wallaroo, Rapid, Orlando, Mildura, Curacoa, Victory I, Excellent, Active, Powerful, Esk and Duke of Wellington before being invalided from service on 21 March 1900, his final ship being Galatea. Generally of very good character he was shown to have spent one occasion in the cells. Physically he stood at 5' 5" and had dark brown hair, grey eyes and a fair complexion. Distinguishing features included a scar on his left hand; two tattoos on the left arm and a birthmark above his left eyelid.

Stephen was married in Portsmouth in early 1901 to Miriam Maud Bourne (b. 1881 in Portsmouth). They would have one child who did not survive infancy.

On the 1901 census Stephen and his new wife are living at 4 Coast Guard Buildings, Sunderland, Durham where he worked as a boatman for HM Coastguard. Stephen would be absent for the 1911 census, but his wife was listed as living at 9 Ventnor Road, Southsea, Portsmouth.

When Stephen signed-on to the Titanic, on 6 April 1912, he gave his address as 42 Duncans Street, Landport, (Hampshire). His last ship had been the Ausonia and as an able bodied seaman he received monthly wages of £5. Also serving aboard was his younger brother John Davis as a baker.

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

Stephen's widow Miriam was remarried twice, first in 1919 to William T. Cannon and secondly in 1928 to Arthur C. Cobb. She remained in Portsmouth for the rest of her life and died in 1963.

 

Comment and discuss

  1. avatar

    Gaston Sam said:

    I've been trying to identify the sailor standing in this picture and by process of elimination it resulted in three possible candidates that could fit our seman's age.They are Charles Taylor, George Clench -judging by a slight similarity to his brother- and James Davis. None of them survived, and I could only find some information of this man Davis. As read on the ET: "Physically he stood at 5' 5" and had dark brown hair, grey eyes and a fair complexion. Distinguishing features included a scar on his left hand; two tattoos on the left arm and a birthmark above his left eyelid". The one... Read full post

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  2. Ioannis Georgiou said:

    How do you know it is one of them? The photograph was taken at Queenstown, the ship is unknown.

  3. avatar

    Gaston Sam said:

    Well, I was just guessing. First of all, when I found this picture it was tagged as the Titanic. So I took it as such, but you know better than me. And then -assuming it was in fact the Titanic- I knew this man wasn’t any of the saved ABs, and guessing his age I looked for any other seaman that by the time of the tragedy would be close to that, resulting in those three men I mentioned. Then you have the fact of the birthmark which stood in favor for him being AB Davis, yet always taking it as a guess, of course.

  4. Robert Stephen Davis said:

    hello, My great grandfather Stephen James Davis ( Able Seaman) died on the Titanic. According to documents his brother John James Davies (Davis ?) ( Extra 2nd baker) also lost his life. My family has known about Stephen James and the Titanic, but only in the last few years, thanks to the internet, Johns name has come up. My father passed away 2018. I suppose I will never know conclusively. cheers Robert Stephen Davis Australia

  5. Robert Stephen Davis said:

    thanks for this info. How does one go about updating this bio info? According to this, my grand father didn't survive infancy. (!) cheers Robert Stephen Davis

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Credits

Gavin Bell

Link and cite this biography

Encyclopedia Titanica (2016) Stephen James Davis (ref: #1329, last updated: 29th December 2016, accessed 16th September 2020 04:48:36 AM)
URL : https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/titanic-victim/stephen-james-davis.html