Another New Titanic Book March

debbie beavis

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Jun 10, 2006
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I hope I am not breaking any unwritten rules of this message board by mentioning my new book, due to be published in early March. It is entitled ‘Who Sailed on Titanic?’ It’s a very different book from anything so far published on Titanic. The foreword is written by Rear Admiral John Lang, Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents, Marine Accident Investigation Board.

I have transcribed onto a computer database the various lists of Titanic passengers held in archives worldwide, some apparently unused by the majority of Titanic researchers. Constraints of space meant that I could not reproduce each list in its entirety but the main biographical data from each has been included, allowing researchers to compare each individual record. Each list has been described and its provenance explained in detail.

I specialise in the study of British passenger records at the Public Record Office in Kew, England. For the first time, the various procedures for the registration of deaths at sea, the ticketing processes, and the compilation of the British pre-embarkation passenger records has been discussed at length with particular emphasis on the foreign passengers. I have also included an in-depth discussion of Titanic’s American and Canadian passenger arrival records. I hope that this study of the records compiled for RMS Titanic and others during the early years of the 20th century will provide a new insight into the transportation not only of Titanic’s transmigrant passengers but of all foreigners arriving in Britain en route for the United States, Canada, South Africa, Australasia and other destinations in the years leading up to WWl. For readers hoping to learn more of their own migrant ancestors, or wishing to further their understanding of travel from, to and through Britain, these and other sources explained here for the first time will prove to be valuable tools for their own research. As a result of my own research I have included a small amount of new information clarifying or correcting that already published for some of Titanic’s foreign passengers, and offer a probable identity for another passenger about whom so far nothing whatsoever has been discovered — including their name!

I should like publicly to thank Hermann Soeldner, Lester Mitcham and Bob Bracken for their tremendous help with the White Star contract ticket list, which threatened to turn into a Titanic mystery of its own. I really would have been lost without their generous help, advice and photocopies. I’d also like to thank Philip Hind for his generous permission to use some information from this wonderful website. I wasn’t given the space to acknowledge each individual in person, but my appreciation of the website is mentioned in various places throughout the book, and specifically cited in the acknowledgements and bibliography.

Debbie Beavis (currently in Australia with sporadic internet/email access
 

Inger Sheil

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Dec 3, 2000
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Debbie, I'm looking forward to your new work tremendously! Your reputation as one of the foremost maritime researchers is so firmly established that I suspect that this is a book that doesn't need to be 'sold' to the messageboard - your accomplishments in the field should do that! I was a long-time subscriber to the maritime list that I believe you hosted (until my bouncing around the world finally became too much to keep unsubbing/resubbing). I've come across traces of your work at the PRO - every now and then they forget to remove the reference slips for the previous reader, and when your name appears on one I figure I'm on the right track!

The concept sounds intriguing - hopefully as well as the information it contains in and of itself, it will encourage readers to go off the beaten track and start looking at archival material around the world. Given how often the question of 'how do I find the official records for X's immigration from the UK' comes up, your book will certainly fill a gap in general knowledge.

Best wishes,

Inger
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Debbie, will this book be available here in the United States? I hope so. If not, how do I go about ordering a copy? And if this maritime list Inger mentioned is still around, how do I subscribe?

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
May 12, 2005
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Ing,

Surely my honorable friend from London does not imply in her remarks above that I was trying to make some official "pitch" for the Tibballs book? I only shared information on it as it was news to me and I thought it might be to others, too. I have nothing to gain from the other book's release and the friend who works for that publisher didn't ask me to post anything to ET about it.

However I will confine any further details I have on the Constable Robinson title to specific interested parties.

Randy
 

debbie beavis

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Jun 10, 2006
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Hello Inger

Thank you for your kind words. I certainly hope you will find it interesting. It's only when a ship founders with large loss of life that so many different 'official' passenger records are produced - by examining and comparing them, a great deal can be discovered concerning the reasons for their compilation, the way it was done and their reliability. Thankfully those opportunities are rare but the tragic loss of life on Titanic gave us such an opportunity and the comparison leads to greater understanding of those matters. I also took the chance to discuss the Board of Trade passenger list for Titanic and others - a wonderful and greatly under-used (and often misunderstood) resource. There is currently no real finding aid for BoT passenger lists - the book I am now working on is a full guide to using them where I shall have more space to discuss them in greater detail. You may like to know, in view of your final comment - the PRO, although they liked the chapters they saw, finally decided that because it referred to only two classes of document (BT26 and BT27 it was too narrow a subject area and would not be sufficiently useful to the general public.... but they would be delighted if I would like them to serialise it in the PRO Magazine! Can't win'em all!! Needless to say I turned down their generous offer and have taken it elsewhere.
 

debbie beavis

Member
Jun 10, 2006
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Hello Michael

The book will be available in the US and as soon as I have details I shall post them to this site. It's currently on amazon.co.uk but not .com

The maritime list to which Inger was referring is Mariners, and yes it is still available. I co-host it with Ted Finch who specialises in ship histories. We have a website at www.mariners-L.freeserve.co.uk and there is a link to the mailing list on the front page. Otherwise you can send a message to mariners-L-request@rootsweb.com with the one word SUBSCRIBE in the body of the message. There are some extremely knowledgeable subscribers on the mailing list and with that and the research guides on the website, most areas can be covered. We are hoping to upload an updated section on US records in the near future, along with some updated British ones. Look forward to seeing you there!

Regards

Debbie Beavis
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Thanks Debbie. I just sent the note. FYI, I'm a retired U.S. Navy ships serviceman 1st Class Petty officer with a long standing interest in maritime history. I hope I can make some useful contributions.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 

Inger Sheil

Member
Dec 3, 2000
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Randy Dear -

Donketta donketta donketta goes head on the desk, after I hastily scrolled up and reread my post. I never thought of my remarks in the context of your other post. I was intrigued by the information you provided in the ohter thread and am very keen to see it when its published - I would have posted to that effect, but unfortunately I'm racing through posts these days. I'll be front row centre when both books are released!

Ta, Debbie, for that additional information! Every so often I have a dabble in passenger lists (I'm more crew focussed in general), and it would be brilliant to have a clear guide to what's where.

~ Ing
 

Kyrila Scully

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Apr 15, 2001
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HI, Debbie. I've had your book for a long time and it's one of my go-to books. Somewhere I read that you had stated there were over 7,000 people who claimed to be Titanic survivors and were not. I used this statement in my book (giving credit for the source, naturally) and wanted to discuss this with you further---maybe a sequel on the horizon?