Owner Who Fled Stricken Titanic Dies as Recluse

Owner Who Fled Stricken Titanic Dies as Recluse

Washington Post

London, Oct. 18 (Monday).—Joseph Bruce Ismay, 74 years old, former owner of the White Star Line and former president of the International Mercantile Marine Co., who survived the Titanic disaster, died Sunday.

Ismay was severely criticized for allowing himself to be rescued from the Titanic. He married Julia Florence Schieffelin, of New York. The Titanic struck an iceberg on the North Atlantic April 14, 1912, and sank with 1,635 persons aboard. Among the dead were John Jacob Astor, Isidor Straus, Benjamin Guggenheim and Maj. Archibald Butts [sic], aide to President Taft. Ismay died without making any statement on the Titanic. One of the ship's officers said 22 years later: "Ismay did the worst thing he ever did in his life when he got into that lifeboat','

Ismay denied at a Senate investigation hearing that he seized a lifeboat with another man and urged the crew to push off while women and children remained on the decks of his ship. The white Star Line, of which Ismay was then chairman, owned the vessel

He became a recluse and although a rich man never-again appeared at any public function. A year later he resigned his chairmanship. His father had founded the line. To the end he refused to discuss the Titanic disaster.

Related Biographies:
Joseph Bruce Ismay

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    Added to Encyclopedia Titanica Wednesday 24th September 2008, last updated .