Bertie Bartholomew

Date of birth: 1887
Place of birth: Southampton
Battalion: Mercantile Marine
Vessel: RMS Apapa
Rank: Second Baker
Died: 28 November 1917, aged 30 years
Commemorated: Tower Hill Memorial

Bertie was a twin and the youngest of 6 siblings born to Edward and Eliza Bartholomew (nee Etheridge).

Edward was born in Chelsea in 1857 and died at sea in 1889. Eliza was born in Romsey in 1856 and died in Windsor in 1941.

They married in Romsey in 1877 and lived in Freemantle.


  1. Edward Charles b. 1878 Southampton d. 1971 Southampton Married Annie Louise Wardell in Southampton in 1900.
  2. Lucy Jane b. 1881 Southampton d. 1982 Norwich Married Alfred Edgar Scragg in Southampton in 1903.
  3. Florence b. 1882 Southampton d. 1972 Southampton Married Henry Herbert England in Southampton in 1906.
  4. Frederick b. 1884 Southampton d. 1979 Southampton Married Minnie Brownen in Winchester in 1913.
  5. Sidney b. 1887 Southampton d. 1961 Southampton Married Florence M. Stanborough in Portsmouth in 1932.
  6. Bertie

Apapa was a steamer built in Belfast in 1914.

She was assigned to the Navy straight away, as a defensively armed merchant ship. She was en route from Sierra Leone to Liverpool, carrying cargo and passengers, when she was hit by a torpedo fired from U-96 off Anglesey.

In the ten minutes it took for the vessel to sink, many of the 119 passengers and 132 crew were able to board lifeboats. However, a second torpedo also hit the starboard side and falling debris from the ship killed many people in lifeboats.
A total of 40 passengers and 37 crew were lost in the sinking.

Researcher: Mark Heritage
Published: 20/07/2015
Updated: Insert dates here

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