No, the dress Edith wore off the ship is not in a museum. Unfortunately the suitcase it was in, when she returned from her last trip to the USA in 1953 (to attend the premier of the movie Titanic), was mishandled and lost.
However, the photo above shows what it looked like and she also described it over the years in interviews, including one with John Maxtone Graham in the early 1970s. She said it was brown.
In most of her articles, Edith refers to the outfit she wore as a "hobble skirt," whereas it was actually a dress, although the skirt was of the "hobble" variety, meaning it was tapered. It was not a classic "hobble" or ‘sheath" skirt but one of the newer versions, being draped and gathered.
The picture shows that Edith’s dress consisted of a tunic (or overdress) of taffeta, trimmed in lace, ribbon and ornamental buttons, and a skirt of cloth or light wool that is draped up on one side. The hem of the skirt isn’t visible in the picture but it would have reached to the instep or ankle. This type of costume, blending a rich material and a simpler one, was all the rage in 1912, especially in the collections of Paris designers Bernard and Paquin. Edith was bringing over quite a bit of merchandise from these two couturiers, so the dress was probably made by one or the other.
Hello, again. I have another question about Edith to ask y'all (i can't help it. she so fascinating). I'm trying to draw a picture of Edith. I have her face drawn, but that's it. Does anybody have any suggestions to what she may be doing in the picture? I want to have her doing something while on Titanic. Also, if u have any suggestions to what she might be wearing in the picture, it would help a lot. Any type of suggestions or inspirations will be a great help.
Edith wrote some letters in the reading and writing room before going to bed on April 14. She was still wearing her white evening dress from dinner that night. She also, earlier that evening, had been among the passengers on deck watching the sun set; she said the sky and the sea-spray were a blaze of colors. She was wearing the same outfit that she was saved in.
Best of luck on your drawing, and be sure to share it with us later; maybe you can do a series of pictures of passengers and crew and submit them to ET as part of a story or commentary.
If you want further inspiration, you might want to buy the book "Pig on Titanic," a very nice children’s picture book that’s not too expensive and should be available at most big bookstores. Here’s a link to Amazon.com’s listing for the book:
randy--thanks for the link to the photos. it's really kind of amazing to think of more or less contemporary people wearing those amazing clothes. Not the kind of thing that's easy to maneuver in a ship sinking.
Thanks Randy. i would like to make Edith the focal point of my picture, but does anyone have any ideas of who could be in the background, and what they could be doing. Any suggestions would help me draw a great picture.
I've seen a YouTube interview with Edith Russell in which she mentions going back to her cabin to lock her 19 trunks because she didn't trust the stewards to do it for her. But there surely wasn't enough room in her cabin for 19 trunks!?
In a 1970 radio interview with Edith when she was 90 years old, she said that steward Robert Wareham went back to Edith's state room to get her lucky pig, but ANTR shows Edith going back herself. Who recovered the pig? And I'd also like to know when it happened. BBC - Archive - Survivors of the Titanic - Line Up | Edith Russell, 7.5 minutes in.