Elizabeth Nye Titanic Survivor by Dave Bryceson

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Inger Sheil

Trying very hard not to sound like I'm writing enthusiastic ad copy, but I'm genuinely very excited that this will soon be available - this is a book that is well worth the wait! Dave Bryceson, whose last book, The Titanic Disaster in the British National Press, has become a standard reference work on Titanic bookshelves and who has written articles and facilitated the research of others (I’m among the many who owe him a great debt), is publishing his second work: the much anticipated biography of Elizabeth Nye.

Elizabeth Nye: Titanic Survivor is the product of years’ worth of research. It’s a cracking good read — as one would expect of Dave — and beautifully illuminates the life and times of its subject. I was particularly interested in Dave’s exploration of the Salvation Army as part of the context of Elizabeth’s life — I lived in the East End near where William and Catherine Booth started the movement (today a statue in Stepney Green commemorates William) and was aware of the broad outline of its history and charity work, but Dave deftly brings it all to life and shows us how integral it was to Elizabeth’s life.

Elizabeth — and her second husband, George Darby — emerge as formidable characters. While her Titanic experiences are what will draw many readers to the subject (and there is plenty on the subject to please them), this biography illustrates the value of history viewed through another angle — not top down from senior figures in politics, art, entertainment etc, but through “ordinary” people…although it becomes apparent through her work in the Salvation Army that Elizabeth was anything but ordinary.

Publication date is confirmed for the 28th of November. Cost in the UK is £10.95 - which includes a £1 donation to the Salvation Army. Publisher is Streets Publishing.
This sounds like a super book! I really enjoy reading up about some of the less famous passengers from the Titanic disaster. I will also be interested to find out more about Elizabeth's Salvation Army work. I'm going to order mine as an early Christmas present - to myself!

Inger Sheil

The revised official release date has been announced - the 6th February. ISBN is 9 780955 198816. The publisher is inviting orders on [email protected] from the release date. Dave has mentioned that if anyone would particularly like to purchase a signed copy then they are welcome to contact me direct on [email protected] - I undestand he is also planning on putting a number on ebay at the Buy-it-now price of £10.95.

My copy has arrived, and it's fabulous - I enjoyed reading it all over again. A wealth of information and the illustrations are superb! A Titanic must have.
Elizabeth Nye - Titanic Survivor
A Biography by David Bryceson
Published by Streets Publishers, Herefordshire.
Price £10.95. ISBN 978-0-9561054-0-0. Card cover, 147 pages.
For the author to get this book published it was indeed a labour of love, which included 20 years of research, after many trials and tribulations he has finally succeeded in getting the book to the Booksellers shelves.
The result is a very worthwhile tome adding to everyone's collection.
The book tells the life story of Elizabeth Nye, a member of the Salvation Army, detailing the early, often tragic, experiences in Folkestone and New York that led to her involvement with the RMS Titanic. It also reveals how the disaster was to affect Elizabeth for the remainder of her life.
I found it a most interesting, very well illustrated read, giving a very good insight into the work and workings of that wonderful organisation the Salvation Army.
Well done Dave.
I would be quite remiss if I failed to put in a plug for Dave Bryceson's biography of Elizabeth Nye. I received my copy yesterday and have literally devoured it--staying up late last night and spending lunchtime today to make more headway into it--finally finishing it up just an hour ago. Dave really put his heart into this and having talked to him in person about it and seen the excitement in his eyes when he spoke of the project, I have just an inkling of what this labor of love has meant to him. The story of Elizabeth Ramell Nye's life needed to be told--there are sad parts, there are happy times, there are passages that make you smile or laugh out loud. And the photos are great--I was especially glad to see rare photos provided by Elizabeth's granddaughter and to know that in the end the family cooperated in some way. And there are many other great photos besides. Although Elizabeth Nye is not as well known a passenger as some others, this is an opportunity for Titanic buffs to know her for the decent, kind, person she was. She passed away on November 22, 1963--a day some of us older people will remember well. That day her death went largely unnoticed by the outside world and even the death of author/philosopher C. S. Lewis was relegated to a footnote due to the events that happened in Dallas, Texas early that afternoon.

I would highly recommend this book and hope all Titanic buffs interested in the people of Titanic will make the small investment in this great work. Congratulations Dave! I couldn't be happier that your goal has been reached in getting this published and made available to all of us.


Inger Sheil

Well said, Brian and Phil - it's a testament not only to the power of Elizabeth's story, but also to Dave's talent and perserverance!

Just wanted to add that folks may want to keep an eye on eBay as an easy way of ordering it - there's a copy up now in ebay UK, item no. 110344378375

Deleted member 173198

I particularly take great comfort at knowing that each sale of the book, a Pound (£1) donation goes towards helping the coppers of the Sally Army. Little do people realise the enormity of their involvement with the Relief Fund. During the early day's the Southampton Committee was faced with all sorts of problems none more so when trying to locate the families around the whole of the U.K. The only organisation that came to their aid with helping hands on offer was the good old Sally Army. They would do the same level care to the victims of the Empress of Ireland as well as the Lusitania.

I have made contact with Dave Bryceson and shall do the honours by sending him a letter with the enclosed payments. Three cheers to Dave and three cheers to the Sally Army and above all I must extend a huge thank you to Inger Sheil for bring this title to our attention.

I have just received my copy of Dave Bryceson's biography of Elizabeth Nye and I've been skimming through it this evening. My first impression is simple: It's excellent!

The book is full of photographs and is a glossy, lavish feeling paperback.

I shall enjoy spending the weekend reading through it. Bravo Dave!

Inger Sheil

Good review, Monica - it certainly was an age with a different mindset when it came to issues like civic duty. I was reminded of my grandfather, who was a sort of local liaison officer for St Vincent de Paul in a rural NSW town. He'd often be called to the door in the middle of the night to help someone down on their luck, and would take them into the family home to assist them. The Salvation Army's human touch, as seen in the wake of the Titanic disaster, came to the fore recently in the Victorian bushfires.
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