Jonkheer Johan George Reuchlin

Mr Jonkheer Johan George Reuchlin

Wereldkroniek, 27 April, 1912
Courtesy of Olivier Mendez, Association Française du Titanic)

Jonkheer Johan George Reuchlin 1, 38, was born in Rotterdam on 6 December, 1874, the second son of Otto Reuchlin (1842 - 1924), wine merchant and later director of the Holland Amerika Line 2. Johan became bureau chief of the Holland Amerika Line, and was himself later made a director. He lived at 53 Calandstraat, Rotterdam.

Reuchlin married Agatha Maria Elink Schuurman in the Netherlands on 10 May 1905. They had three children: Henri, Carolina Helena and Maarten 3.

He boarded the Titanic at Cherbourg as first class passenger carrying ticket number 19972. The ticket was complementary because of his position with the Holland America Line which was part of the International Mercantile Marine. J. Pierpont Morgan's conglomerate that also owned the White Star Line. Reuchlin was on the Titanic to evaluate the Olympic-class liners. The Holland America Line had ordered a large vessel from Harland & Wolff - the Statendam II which was already under construction in March 1912.

Bruce Ismay wrote a letter concerning Reuchlin's voyage on 21 March 1912 to the general director of the Holland Amerika Line:

1A COCKSPUR STREET
LONDON, S.W.
March 21st., 1912


J.V. Wierdsma, Esq.,
Holland-America Line,
Rotterdam.

Dear Mr Wierdsma, I am obliged for your letter of the 20th. Inst., and shall be much interested to learn the result of your conversation with Mr Strasser in regard to the proposal to run a line of steamers from Rotterdam and Antwerp to the West Coast of North America through the Panama Canal. I note that Mr Reuchlin, Jr. expects to sail on the "Titanic" to New York on the 10th. April, and that he will book his passage through the Cockspur Street Office, and I will be very glad to see that he is allotted a comfortable room.

Believe me,

Yours very truly

Bruce Ismay.

Mr Reuchlin appears to have enjoyed the voyage. On April 14th he received and sent some telegrams:

(1) received from the Noordam at 2.25 pm
Mr Reuchlin 1st cabin passenger SS TITANIC
Had moderate wly. winds and fair weather no fog.
Wish you pleasant trip
Krol

(2) sent to Cape Race at 6.15 pm
Reuchlin Calandstraat 53 Rotterdam
Continuing smooth and fair Greetings

(3) sent to Caronia at 6.54 pm
Captain, Steamer Noordam
Thanks for message had fine weather no fog bon voyage
Reuchlin.

(4) received from Noordam via Caronia at 7.44 pm
Mr Reuchren (sic) 1st Cabins passenger SS Titanic
Had moderate westerly winds and fair weathe no fog wish you
pleasant trip
Krol

(5) sent to Noordam at 8.55 pm
Captain Steamer Noordam
Thanks for message had fine weather no fog bon voyage
Reuchlin.

Reuchlin died in the disaster apparently making no effort to save his own life. His family characterized him as a "very integer [sic] and good person, who did not insist getting a seat in a lifeboat". On 18 April the director of the Holland Amerika Line in America, Mr C. Gips, awaited Mr Reuchlin at New York Harbour, not knowing that he had died in the sinking. The sad information was told to him by Bruce Ismay. Gips immediately sent a telegram to HAL, Rotterdam and a letter to Mr Reuchlins wife Agatha. She received a annual payment of hfl. 5000,-- from the Holland America Line.

Reuchlin's body, if recovered, was never identified.

Notes
1. "Jonkheer" is not a part of his formal name, but rather a Dutch equivalent to "The honourable..."
2. The general director of the Holland Amerika Line, Jan Volkert Wierdsma, had been on the maiden voyage of the Olympic.
3. Agatha Maria Elink Schuurman was born in Rotterdam on 17 May 1880. Henri Reuchlin was born 7 July 1906, Carolina Helena was born 5 July 1908 and Maarten was born 3 February 1911.

References and Sources

Contract Ticket List, White Star Line 1912 (National Archives, New York; NRAN-21-SDNYCIVCAS-55[279])
John Booth & Sean Coughlan (1993) Titanic Signals of Disaster. White Star Publicatons, Westbury, Wiltshire. ISBN 0 9518190 1 1
Marriages, births, deaths and injuries that have occurred on board during the voyage (PRO London, BT 100/259-260)
Edward P. De Groot (1996, 1998) Titanic. De Alk B.V.
Association Française du Titanic

Credits
Olivier Mendez, France
David Schumacher
Hermann Söldner, Germany

Pictures

The TSS Noordam

THE TSS NOORDAM

 

Articles and Stories

STEAMSHIP DIRECTOR A VICTIM

Evening Telegraph  (1912) 

STEAMSHIP DIRECTOR A VICTIM

 
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    (2014) Jonkheer Johan George Reuchlin Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #237, accessed 19th April 2014 11:18:00 PM)

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