Caleb Extance

Date of birth: 15th December 1878
Place of birth: Southampton
Regiment: Royal Marine Light Infantry
Vessel: HMS Viknor
Rank / Service No: Private, PO/8844
Died: 13 January 1915, aged 36 years
Commemorated: Portsmouth Naval Memorial


Caleb was the sixth of 8 siblings born to Hugh and Catherine Extance (nee Mills), who married in Southampton in 1866.

Both parents were born in 1846, Hugh in Shaftesbury and Catherine in Midhurst.


Catherine passed away in Southampton in 1912, with Hugh following in 1920.



Edwin Hugh   b. 1867 Southampton   d. 13 July 1896 Multan, India. A Private in 1st Hants Regt, he died of suspected alcoholic poisoning !!

John   b. 1870 Brockenhurst   d. 1947 Winchester   Married Kate Preston in Southampton in 1921.

Kate Eliza   b. 1872 Thruxton   d. 1964 Southampton   Married Robert J. Welch in Southampton in 1941.

Emlyn   b. 1875 Southampton   d. 1956 Willesden   Married Rowland James Tovery in Southampton in 1908.

Hugh   b. 1877 Southampton   d. 1955 Southampton   Married Alice Davis in Southampton in 1897….the couple had 8 children.


Edgar Willie   b. 1881 Southampton   d. 1961 Winchester   Married Winifred M. Biles in Southampton in 1927.

Ernest George   b. 1884 Southampton   d. 1933 Queens, N.Y.C   Married Alice M. Lye in Manhattan on 13 April 1916. Ernest arrived in NYC on 1 September 1912.


Caleb married Agnes Blann in Southampton in 1906. The couple had 3 children, although Caleb cannot have known their last-born….


Lily Kate   b. 1908 Southampton   d. 2000 Southampton

Ernest Caleb   b. 1910   d. 1984 Southampton   Married Jean A. Manttan in Southampton in 1940.

Charles John   b. 1915 Southampton   d. 1984 Southampton   Married Amey E. Tiller in Southampton in 1939.


HMS Viknor was originally built in 1888 in Glasgow, as the passenger ship S/S Atrato.

In 1912 she was renamed Viking and in 1914, when she became an Armed Merchant Cruiser, Viknor.


She was transferring some high-profile German prisoners from Kirkwall in the Orkneys to Liverpool, with Caleb presumably on guard duty, when she sank in heavy weather off the Irish coast.

No distress call was sent, and none of the 295 crew and passengers survived.

It was assumed she had hit one of some recently-laid mines.


Many of the bodies were washed ashore days after the sinking.



Researcher: Mark Heritage
Published: 15th July 2016


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