Joseph Philippe Lemercier Laroche

Mr Joseph Philippe Lemercier Laroche

Joseph Philippe Lemercier Laroche

Mr Joseph Philippe Lemercier Laroche was born in Cap Haitien, Haiti on 26 May 1886. In 1901, at age 15, he left Haiti and travelled to Beauvais, France, where he hoped to join the high school to study engineering.

While visiting nearby Villejuif Joseph met Miss Juliette Lafargue; After Joseph graduated and got his degree, he and Juliette were married in March of 1908. Their daughter Simonne was born 19 February 1909; a second daughter, Louise, was born prematurely on 2 July 1910, and suffered many subsequent medical problems.

Racial discrimination prevented Joseph Laroche from obtaining a high-paying job in France. Since the family needed more money to cope with Louise's medical bills, Joseph decided to return to Haiti to find a better-paying engineering job, the move being planned for 1913.

In March 1912, however, Juliette discovered that she was pregnant, so she and Joseph decided to leave for Haiti before her pregnancy became too far advanced for travel. Joseph's mother in Haiti bought them steamship tickets on the La France as a welcome present, but the line's strict policy regarding children caused them to transfer their booking to the Titanic's second class. On April 10 the Laroche family took the train from Paris to Cherbourg in order to board the brand new liner later that evening.

Joseph - who is thought to have been the only black passenger on the Titanic - died in the sinking but his family were saved, possibly in lifeboat 14.

References and Sources
Contract Ticket List, White Star Line 1912 (National Archives, New York; NRAN-21-SDNYCIVCAS-55[279])
Marriages, births, deaths and injuries that have occurred on board during the voyage (PRO London, BT 100/259-260)
Judith Geller (1998) Titanic: Women and Children First. Haynes. ISBN 1 85260 594 4

Credits
George Behe, USA
Phillip Gowan, USA
Olivier Mendez, France

Pictures

Laroche Family

LAROCHE FAMILY

 
Memorial card for Joseph Philippe Lemercier Laroche, 1912

(1912) 

MEMORIAL CARD FOR JOSEPH PHILIPPE LEMERCIER LAROCHE, 1912

 
Back of memorial card in memory of Joseph Laroche

(1912) 

BACK OF MEMORIAL CARD IN MEMORY OF JOSEPH LAROCHE

 
Genuine White Star Line envelope saved by Mme Laroche

(1912) 

GENUINE WHITE STAR LINE ENVELOPE SAVED BY MME LAROCHE

 
Brochure saved from the Titanic by mme Laroche

(1911) 

BROCHURE SAVED FROM THE TITANIC BY MME LAROCHE

 
Louise Laroche in 1996

(1996) 

LOUISE LAROCHE IN 1996

 
Louise Laroche at her home

(1997) 

LOUISE LAROCHE AT HER HOME

 
Louise Laroche and actor Paul Rudd in Paris

(1995) 

LOUISE LAROCHE AND ACTOR PAUL RUDD IN PARIS

 
Restaurant à la Carte coupon (back)

(1911) 

RESTAURANT à LA CARTE COUPON (BACK)

 
Restaurant à la Carte coupon (front)

(1911) 

RESTAURANT à LA CARTE COUPON (FRONT)

 
Tianic postcard bought by Mme Laroche

TIANIC POSTCARD BOUGHT BY MME LAROCHE

 
The Laroche family

(1912) 

THE LAROCHE FAMILY

 
S.S. Chicago

S.S. CHICAGO

 
Liner France

LINER FRANCE

 

Articles and Stories

Letter Re: Laroche Family

(1912) 

LETTER RE: LAROCHE FAMILY

 
UNE RESCAPÉE du Titanic

Le Matin  (1912) 

UNE RESCAPÉE DU TITANIC

 
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    (2014) Joseph Philippe Lemercier Laroche Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #486, accessed 18th April 2014 11:35:49 AM)

    URL : http://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/titanic-victim/joseph-laroche.html