Biography of Colonel Archibald Gracie


Hitch

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Feb 4, 2004
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Hey everyone.
Can anyone give me a short biography of Colonel Archibald Gracie?

Like his job, wife, brothers/sisters....

Thanks.
-Carl
 
Mar 10, 1998
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Hi Carl,
There's a really good (and memorable!) photo of Mrs. Gracie in the "Gallery of Titanic Visages" under ET Research.

Regards,
Phil
 

Hitch

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Feb 4, 2004
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Thanks Phillip.

You mean this one
I must say she is kind of a weird lady. :)

But was she also on board the Titanic?
 

Ben Holme

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Feb 11, 2001
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Quote "If that hat was seaworthy it could have saved a whole family."

If that's the case, then Charlotte Cardeza's boa would have accomodated the entire engineering department. That thing was a veritable polar bear!
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Gracie belonged to a social class that were usually described as 'independently wealthy' and didn't really need to have a job to earn a living. He had, however, been a colonel in the US Army and was involved in the real estate business. He was also an amateur researcher and writer in the field of military history, and his meticulous and honest approach tended to produce dull and uninspiring reading. But it was exactly the right approach needed to investigate and write The Truth about the Titanic.
 
Mar 20, 2007
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This is an amusing link! Amongst others, it ought to take you to a set of photographs, apparently dating from 1915, which depict Washington Society women with their dogs. If you scroll through to page 3 or so, you'll find a couple of sweet snaps of Colonel Archibald Gracie's daughter, Edith Temple Gracie, who was doing the rounds as a fashionable debutante at that time.


I wonder what her dog was called?
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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The forum software is confused by the ampersand character, so it breaks the linking at that point in the web address. Use copy & paste to get the whole address directly into the browser navigation window and it will work fine.
 

Mark Baber

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Jul 4, 2000
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The forum software is confused by the ampersand character

Actually, Bob, the software was confused by the way the link was formatted. It's been fixed now and works just fine.
 
Mar 20, 2007
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Edith Gracie was formally presented to New York Society by her parents at the tail-end of November 1912, at a grand reception held at the Hotel Gotham. This was a mere week or so before the poor colonel finally succumbed to the after-effects of his terrible ordeal on the Atlantic that April and one imagines he felt pretty rotten throughout. Edith wore a gown of white charmeuse, hand-painted with roses and trimmed with crystal fringing, whilst Mrs Gracie was in blue brocade with gold and pearls. There were lavish floral decorations (although most of the bouquets received were sent to the city hospitals) and among the guests was Mrs Gracie's sister, Mrs William D. Dutton, with whom she had been staying when news of the disaster broke. In fact, by her own testimony, and as related in the colonel's account of the sinking, Mrs Gracie had received something of a premonition and spent the night of 14th April on her knees, praying for her husband's safety.

Edith makes sporadic appearances in the Society columns of the contemporary press and seems to have been a popular sort of girl (hardly surprising, given her very winning smile evident in the photographs above). After her father's death, she continued her activities on the party circuit, attending some of the same functions as her contemporary, Lois B. Cassatt. Indeed, the two debutantes unwittingly synchronised one very important event in their lives - the announcement of their marriages, Edith to Dunbar B. Adams and Lois to Jack Thayer, which was made in the press on the same day in December, 1917. By that time, the United States had entered the Great War and Edith apparently did her bit by nursing the troops. Tragically, she was soon to be a victim of the Spanish influenza pandemic which wreaked havoc in the aftermath of the conflict, depriving her mother of her last remaining child (another daughter having been killed in an elevator accident in Paris). There was, however, some funny business surrounding her will and Mrs Gracie had her say in court. I'm not up on my legal jargon but, once again, I get the impression that she was not a woman to be tangled with...
 

Luke Owens

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Jan 18, 2007
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Has anyone ever gotten around to writing a comprehensive biography of Archibald Gracie? I'm particularly interested in the effect of his father's death in the American Civil War on his psychological makeup. His father died when Gracie was five years old, leaving him the only male in the family. Given the time, it seems likely that young Archibald's psyche was seriously affected by this.

BTW, is anyone as incensed as I am about the casting of Bernard Fox as Archibald Gracie in Cameron's flick?

Luke