Mrs Arthur Henry Wells ("Addie" Dart Trevaskis) was born on 17 January, 1883 at Street-an-Nowan (the New Street), Newlyn, Cornwall. This was a harbour-front location referred to as Wharf on the 1881 census which later became, and still is known as the Strand. Addie was the daughter of Mr William John Trevaskis (Blacksmith and later Fish Packer) and Mrs Ann Barnes Trevaskis (nee Kneebone), a Dressmaker. She was sister to William John, George Marrack, Abednego Harvey and Henry Kneebone.
Addie married Mr Arthur Henry Wells a Railway Conductor in 1907 and on 26 February 1908 their fist child, Joan was born in Newlyn. Their second child, Ralph Lester was born on 15 December 1909. The family later moved to live at 2 Nevada Place, Heamoor near Penzance. Her husband moved to Akron, Ohio in 1910, his address being 279 Arch Street. Addie's brother, Mr Abednego Trevaskis had accompanied him.
In 1912, after leaving her home in Nevada Place, Heamoor, Addie was to join her husband and brother in Akron. She had sold her household furnishings before leaving, but had brought her family linen with her. The linen included pieces inherited from her mother and grandmother. She boarded the Titanic at Southampton (after being seen off by her husbands brother, William Wells, who had travelled up from Penzance and was to later join the family in Akron).
She travelled second class with her two young children, their ticket was numbered 29103 and cost £23. They had been originally due to have travel on the Oceanic but were transferred due to the coal strikes.
Addie Wells and Emily Richards had strolled the deck of the Titanic the night of the 14th, noticing how cold it was. She and her children were well asleep when the Titanic struck the iceberg. She awoke to a tremendous jolt. She heard a commotion and a friend yelled "Dress quickly: there's some trouble I believe, but I don't know what it is." Having dressed the children she tried to get them to the boat deck but found many of the doors leading to the boat deck had been locked, she searched frantically until she found one that was unlocked. She would later admit that she did not realize the seriousness of the situation and thought it was some sort of drill. "'An officer was shouting "Come on here, lively now, this way, women and children." She was grabbed by someone who told her, "This way," and she and her family were put into lifeboat 14. As the boat pulled away, she saw steerage men rushing up on deck, other men standing back and watching them soberly, and an officer with a revolver in his hand. She had been told to lie down in the bottom of the boat and not make any disturbance as there was trouble enough. She could hear faint cries from the Titanic and several shots. She claimed that the officer shouted to third class men crowding toward the boat, "Stand back there now, the first word out of you and I'll...." (she missed the rest). There were so many people in her boat 14, Addie Wells could not sit down. Instead, she held her children in her skirts to keep them dry. Also in the boat was Mrs Agnes Davis and her son John Morgan Davis. Mrs Davis was as confused as Mrs Wells and asked her "what it was all about." When the ship went down, people could still be heard screaming as they had been locked in their rooms. Amemory that would cause Addie to have nightmares for years. The Wells' spent the night in the boat and were picked up at daybreak. On the Carpathia, she refused to sleep below and supposedly they slept on deck.
The Wells were met in New York City by her husband, Arthur Wells and Addie's brother, Abednego Trevaskis who had travelled from Akron. They spent the night of the 19th at the Star Hotel, 57 Clarkson Street. While there, Mrs Wells spoke to newspaper reporters and told of her experience. Eight years later, the Wells' lived at 613 Euclid Avenue. Arthur was working as a machinist in a laundry shop and was caring for Joan, Ralph, and a son born in 1918, Arthur L. Wells. Arthur's brother, William Wells, was also living with the family. Another son, Charles Owen Wells, was born in Akron, Ohio on 22 February, 1921
Addie passed away in Akron, Ohio on 28 May 1954.
- He is still living in the Akron area.
References and Sources
Akron Beacon Journal, 16 April, 1912, Eight of Ten Akron People Are Saved
Akron Beacon Journal, 29 May, 1954, Obituary
Ohio Department Of Health Certificate Of Death
Cleveland Plain Dealer (Ohio), 21 April 1912
Akron Beacon Journal (Ohio), 19 April 1912, 20 April 1912, 22 April 1912; 1920
Census, Ohio, Summit County, Akron, Enumeration District 166, Page 6, line 49
Steve Coombes, UK
Chris Dohany, USA
Phillip Gowan, USA
Iris L. Stacey (née Wells), USA
Homer Thiel, USA
Brian Ticehurst, UK
Articles and Stories
Akron Beacon Journal (1912)
West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser (1912)