Grace Parsons

RMS Carpathia Passenger

Miss Grace Douglas Parsons was born in Detroit, Michigan, USA on 13 February 1863. She was the daughter of prominent banker Philo Parsons, a native of New York, and the former Anna Eliza Barnum of Connecticut. She had seven siblings, of who she was the youngest.

Grace, who never married, was a schoolteacher and one of the first Americans in her profession to use the Montessori teaching method, having studied the technique in Rome. Spending much of her adult life in Brooklyn, New York, she was later in charge of the Pratt Institute Kindergarten in Greenpoint. Retiring early, she continued to be interested in educational matters.

Miss Parsons was aboard the Carpathia as a first cabin passenger and was travelling with fellow Kindergarten teacher Minnie Glidden, both headed to Rome to visit schools established by Madame Montessori. After that ship rescued the survivors of the Titanic disaster, she continued with her voyage to Italy, not returning to the USA until September the following year aboard Cretic.

In later years Grace Parsons, a devout Christian Scientist, developed breast cancer which later metastasised to one of her arms. Perhaps eschewing conventional medical intervention on account of her beliefs, Grace relocated to Brookline, Massachusetts where she remained in the care of fellow Christian Scientists until she passed away. She died in Brookline on 30 January 1924. 

Research Articles

Günter Bäbler Titanica! (2019) Carpathia Passenger List

Newspaper Articles

New York Times (19 April 1912) RMS Carpathia: First Class Passenger List including place of living or booking
Brooklyn Times Union (1 February 1924) Grace Parsons, Former Brooklyn Educator, Dies

Documents and Certificates

RMS Carpathia: First Class Passenger List printed on board
Search archive online


Gavin Bell, UK
Günter Bäbler, Switzerland

Link and cite this biography

Encyclopedia Titanica (2021) Grace Parsons (ref: #2885, last updated: 14th June 2021, accessed 31st July 2021 19:36:10 PM)

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