(Click "Read More" for the exciting conclusion, and brilliant tidbits of maritime trivia...)
Kilner was, and is, a pretty rare first name. Given the coincidences here, I think there is a strong possibility that Kilner N. Black, Englishman of Irish descent, hailing from Liverpool, born about 1875, could be a son of "our" Kilner's sister, Eliza Newman. What we know about her is that she was born in Ireland in 1835, married a George Black, and died and was buried in Liverpool, England in 1893. If so, she would have been about 39-40 years old when this steward was born.
[Update: There is a Q1 1955 North Liverpool death record for Kilner N. Newman, age 83. This gives an alternative birth year of about 1872, meaning if Eliza was his mother, she was about 37 years old at the time.]
- On 12 May 1918, H.M.T. Olympic became the only merchant vessel in W.W. I to ram and sink a U-boat.
- In 1934, she also rammed and sank the famous Nantucket Lightship in the fog off New England.
- Oh, her sistership? Ever hear of the Titanic?
Source: New York Passenger Lists, 1920-1957, Ancestry.com
and of course, Wikipedia