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Roll of Honour

Hartlepool seafarers lost at sea

Siddell, Thomas

Chief Engineer
29, Stockton Street, West Hartlepool
West Hartlepool

Lost on the steamship Rhenass. 

Thomas was born in Hartlepool in 1860, to parents Thomas and Margaret Siddell(nee Shotton). The 1861 Census lists Thomas senior as a Coal Trimmer, living with his wife, daughters Sarah Ann (aged 8), Elizabeth (aged 5), Mary Ann (aged 3), and 1-year son Thomas, in Baltic Street, Hartlepool.

The 1871 Census shows the family still living in Baltic Street (No.2), now with the addition of two more daughters, Mary Jane (aged 8), Margaret Alderson (aged 4), and a son, James William (aged 2). Eldest daughter Sarah Ann (now 17), is listed as a Dressmaker.
By 1881 Thomas junior (listed as an Engine Fitter), is now living with only his wife Jane and daughter Ellen (aged 5 months?), in Commercial Street, Hartlepool. Thomas Senior was in Baltic St where he died in 1885. His wife, Thomas' junior's mother was listed at the Baltic St address as a widow and cowkeeper!

On July 25th, 1880, Thomas junior (also an Engine Fitter), married Jane Elliott at Christ Church, West Hartlepool, with James Leitch and Margaret Moore as Witnesses. Thomas' father is again recorded as a Trimmer, while his wife's father is listed as a Corker (more likely a Caulker in the shipyards).


The 1901 Census shows Thomas (a sea-going Marine Engineer), and his wife living at No.22, Clifton Street, Hartlepool; with them in the house are Ellen (aged 20), George (aged 12), Margaret (aged 12), Mary E.K. (aged 3), and 1-year old Thomas.

The 1911 Census finds Thomas, now aged 50, as 2nd Engineer on the steamship Ellington, owned by the Freear & Dixon Steam Shipping Co. Ltd., Sunderland.

When Thomas and five others were lost on SS Rhenass when it was struck by a mine off Suffolk, it was reported in The Scotsman newspaper that Mr Liddle (should have read Siddle) chief engineer and his son in law, Charles Benjamin Lincoln, both from West Hartlepool  lost their lives. Charles Lincolm was the husband of Thomas' daughter Margaret and they had been married in 1915.

At the time of Thomas' death, his wife Jane is recorded as living at No.29, Stockton Street, West Hartlepool. Jane herself died in May 1922.