Captain Rostron and Survivors Committee


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Muffet Brown

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I am trying to determine Rostron's height, or the heights of members of Titanic survivor's committee, in order to gage the height of Mrs. Brown. The Molly Brown House Museum estimates her at 5 ft 8in, and I say no way, esp. if she was the 5 or 6 shoe size in which she took so much pride.

U.S. Senate inquiry comments (by Senator Smith, I think) portray Rostron as a tall man, but tall in 1912... Can anyone point me to a British public record/admiralty database which would have this, as I presume his autobiography makes no mention of his vital statistics?

Who are the truly tall men in foreground, to left of Rostron & Brown in the May 1912 loving cup award ceremony photo? Is the tall, dark, moustached man in boater hat Billy Carter?
 

Chris Dohany

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Dec 12, 1999
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I believe the man you refer to is Bjornstrom-Steffansson. From the photo on the Molly Brown House site, I think the identifications from left to right are:
Seward, Behr, Bjornstrom, Isaac Frauenthal, Rostron, Brown, Spedden, Harder.
 
Mar 10, 1998
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Am not looking at the photo so I may be whistling down the wind--but Bjornstrom-Steffanson was a very short man (5'0"). That "lack of heighth" should be obvious in any photograph of him in a group.

Regards,
Phillip
 
Dec 13, 1999
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Does someone know where I can find a good photograph of Mr. Björnström-Steffanson, other than on this picture? I know there once was one on this site, but for am unknown reason it was retrieved. Any help appreciated.
 

Chris Dohany

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Eaton and Haas "Titanic - Triumph and Tragedy" page 157. That's the photo that was previously on this site.
 
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Muffet Brown

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Thanks, Chris and Phillip,
I would agree the back row appears to be Behr, Frauenthal, Spedden & Harder. By process of elim., maybe 3rd from left was Carter, as nobody shrinks upwards of 8 inches as they age. The Polar book shows Daisy Spedden taller than Frederick, so Brown & Rostron can't be too tall, in comparison. Frauenthal was identified as left & behind Rostron in a newspaper clipping our relatives have. This close-up photo, which is the only decent one of Brown that day, has Brown & Rostron looking at each other and smiling. It's captioned "Rescue Ship Captain Receiving Survivors Loving Cup and Denver Titanic Heroine Who Collected the Fund" and "Carpathia Heroes Blush Like Schoolboys When They Receive Medals." Photo credit is American Press Assoc. Some day I need to see if their archives exist somewhere. Paper may have been the NY Herald ca. May 29, 1912. It's a great shot!
 
Mar 20, 2000
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In answer to Muffet Brown's quest to determine Molly's height:

Speaking as a costumer & fashion writer I should 1st speak to the issue of heel heights. Circa 1910-20 fashionable shoes (meaning French or "spool" or "Louis" heeled high-tops or pumps w/ pointed toes, which Mrs. Brown would have been wearing)would have had only a 2 and a half to 3 in. heel. Some evening slippers (those for the new-fangled Tango) did have higher heels.

Mrs. Brown appears tall but one must realize she's in high heels. Capt. Rostron looks short actually so I'm assuming the other men, who are all taller are closer to average height - 5'11" to 6 ft. (Height hasn't changed that much: Lady Duff Gordon was 5'3" for example & was always considered short, so 5'5" for women was apparently an average even then.) I'm thinking Mrs. Brown was 5'5" & in heels was 5'7" or 5'8". Doesn't that seem to fit w/ the heights of the others in the pic?

Also as to height having to do w/ shoe size, here's a little inconsequential inside patter- Andrew Duff Gordon told me (via letter) that his great uncle Cosmo, who was 6'3", had very small feet for his size & athleticism, size 8 or 9.

Hope my ramblings are of help.
 
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Daniel Rosenshine

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Hello to everyone,

This may be a little late, but I'm always slow at replying to messages.

It came as a surprise to me that Mr. Gowan said Mr Bjonstrom was a 5' character. From what I have read in newspapers, he was described as a 6' muscular man. The Carpathia's lists of survivors also give his and Mr Ismay's height as 6' so as far as I always knew, Mr Bjonstrom was 6'. Woolner listed sraight after Bjonstrom is also 6'.

Daniel.
 
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Daniel Rosenshine

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Unless I scanned too quickly, I was unable to find Molly Brown's name in those records, although 6 pages are available of first class names, about 30 names or so per page (giving room that some names were not first class and thus crossed out), that's not enough to cover all 201 names, so perhaps there is another list.

Daniel.
 
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