William Thomas Hughes was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, England during the second quarter of 1878.
He was the son of a Welsh father, William Hughes (b. 1838 in Anglesey) and an English mother, Emma Fleetwood (b. 1850 in Aigburth, Lancashire), who had married in St David's Church, Liverpool on 3 March 1878. His father, a gardener, had had a previous marriage and had a daughter named Agnes Margaret (b. 1876) from that union. William also had three siblings: Richard Charles (b. 1880), Frederick Wynne (b. 1883) and Sarah Emma (b. 1886).
William and his family appear on the 1881 census living at Rice Cottage, New Hall Lane, West Derby, Lancashire and would move to Grange Lane, Little Woolton, Prescot by the time of the 1891 census. William perhaps went to sea at a young age and would be absent from the 1901 census. His father died some time after this and his mother moved in with her married stepdaughter and her family at 131 Market Street, Hoylake, Cheshire and would be listed here on the 1911 census. William was listed elsewhere as a boarder at Ivy Bank, Dyer Road, Freemantle, Southampton and he was described as an unmarried ship's steward. Also boarding at this address was Titanic's barber August Weikman.
When he signed-on to the Titanic, on 6 April, 1912 William gave his address as Ivy bank, Dyer Road, (Southampton). His last ship had been the Olympic and as assistant second steward he received monthly wages of £8.
William Hughes, who was engaged to be married, died in the sinking. His body, if recovered, was never identified. His estate, worth £203, 5s, 8d was administered to his brother Richard Charles Hughes, then a fruiterer.
William is commemorated on a family grave in Hoylake Parish Graveyard, Hoylake, Wirral.
Gavin Bell, UK