Mr William John Bond

Mr William John Bond (Bedroom Steward, 1st Class) was born in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England around early 1867.1

Whilst not entirely certain it appears that William was born in Henbury, Bristol in early 1867, his birth being registered in the first quarter of that year in Clifton. He was baptised on 31 March 1867 and was the only child of John Bond (b. circa 1844) and Jemima Annie White (b. 1843), both natives of Bristol who had married in 1864. His father died within a year of his birth and his mother was remarried in 1870 to George Pople (b. 1850), a gardener and later a licensed victualler, affording William several half-siblings.

He appears on the 1871 census living with his mother, stepfather and half brother George Francis (b. 1870) at an address in Clifton. When the 1881 census was conducted the family were listed as living at The Royal Shade public house on Waterloo Place, Clifton, of which George Pople was the proprietor, but William is not present; he was instead listed as a domestic page for a wealthy merchant, Thomas Miller and his family, on Mitcheldean Road, Longhope, Gloucestershire.

Bond's movements over the next years are unknown. He was married around 1898 to Eliza Anne Carter (b. 1876), a native of Hawkesbury, Gloucestershire, the daughter of Henry James Carter and Mary Thompson. The couple went on to have five children: William Eugene (b. 1899), Henry John Leonard (b. 1900), Gladys Annie Mabel (b. 1903), Florence Ella Beatrice (b. 1905) and Lilian Grace M. (b. 1910). They would lose their eldest son William at a young age, sometime between 1901 and 1911.

William is not present at the time of the 1901 census when his wife and first two children were recorded as living at 36 Spofforth (?) Road, West Derby. When William does appear, on the 1911 census, he and his family are living at 18 Herondale Road, Mossley Hill, Liverpool and he was described as a ship's steward.

He was shown as a member of crew aboard numerous voyages aboard Cedric in 1904, his address at the time being 111 Kenmore (?) Road, Liverpool. One voyage, in May 1904, states that his ship previous to that had been Republic.

Bond was on board the Titanic for her delivery trip from Belfast to Southampton. When he signed-on again, in Southampton, on 4 April 1912, he gave his local address as 20 Hanley Road, Southampton. His last ship had been the Olympic and as a bedroom steward he received monthly wages of £3, 15s.

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

His estate, worth £185, was administered to his widow Eliza on 30 May 1912.          

His widow and children also benefitted from the Titanic Relief Fund and as further compensation for the loss of their breadwinner, the family gained free passage across the Atlantic. They left British shores on 3 August 1912, travelling aboard Laurentic bound for Montréal, settling in Ontario.

Eliza Bond was soon to remarry in her new home. In Toronto, on 29 September 1914 she became Mrs William McDonald. Her new husband William (b. 1889) was a salesman originally from Glasgow and it is understood that Eliza and her new husband went on to start their own family in Toronto but what became of them is not currently certain.

Bond's eldest daughter Gladys died young, not reaching her 14th birthday. She died in Toronto on 13 May 1917.

His son Henry later worked as a clerk and was married in 1925 to Florrie Hartley (b. 1902), another English migrant. What became of him is unknown.

Credits
Gavin Bell

Notes
  1. When he signed on to Titanic in April 1912 he stated that he was aged 40. The year previous, at the time of the 1911 census, he stated he was 46 years old, placing his year of birth as 1864/1865. On voyages he made aboard Cedric he gave ages that would place his time of birth as 1868/1869. The 1868/1869 timeframe seems the more likely.
References and Sources
Agreement and Account of Crew (PRO London, BT100/259)
Particulars of Engagement (Belfast), Ulster Folk and Transport Museum (TRANS 2A/45 381)
  • Link and cite this biography

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