People on board
Charles Self was born in Stourbridge, Worcestershire in 1882 to James Self and Mary Ann Cass. He was the fourth of their seven surviving children, three others having died young. James Self was born in London, but he and Mary Ann were married in Chelmsford, Essex where the family lived until shortly before Charles was born. They had moved back to Chelmsford by 1901 and were living at Primrose Hill, former site of the town’s gallows! James Self was a ‘Leather Dresser’ as was his son William in 1901. Charles, then nineteen, was an ‘Electrical Engineer’s Labourer’.
James Self died in 1906 and by 1911 only Charles and his youngest brother and sister, all single, were at home with their widowed mother. Charles then gave his occupation as ‘Armature Winder’ repairing electric motors. It is not known when he enlisted but by October 1918 he was Acting Sergeant in the 21st Fortress Company of the Royal Engineers. The Fortress Companies were responsible for Coastal Defence, largely manned by soldiers unfit for overseas duties. The 21st Company was stationed in Harwich so it is not clear why Charles Self was in Ireland.
Presumably returning home on leave, he travelled on RMS Leinster on the 10th of October. He did not survive the sinking nor was his body recovered. His name is recorded on the Hollybrook Memorial in Southampton and on the memorial in Chelmsford Cathedral.