Father Browne phtographs

I'm sure this issue has come up before, but I was wondering if anyone knew the identity of the middle aged couple photographed walking on A deck near the entrance to the Palm Court, the port crance and entrance to the A Deck promenade visible in the background. They don't (but I could be mistaken) appear to be any members of the Odell party, but the photo is certainly clear enough for the two to be ID'd. Any thoughts? I would love to hear any opinions on the matter.
Hello Brian,

The consensus of opinion is in favour of Richard Smith and Mrs Nichols [listed on this web-site as Mr Nichols]. Mrs Nichols disembarked at Queenstown.
Hi Everybody,

out of all the pictures made by Father Browne, this one is my favorite:


That picture of an unidentified couple walking on the deck ...

I used to have it in a bigger version (found it on the internet), but I lost it during one of my computer hard-drive crashs - and have since never been able to find it again (except for this small version) - does anyone know where I can find it ? (Or does anobody have it and would be kind enough to send me a scan of it ?)

Any help would be appreciated ...



P.S. Even though this seems to be my first message, I was a member of the website for a long time ... but apparently after being inactive for around a year, my account got deleted - lol

It is now generally agreed that the couple are 1st Class passenger Richard Smith and a Mrs Emily Nichols who travelled from Southampton to Queenstown.

oh, wow ! Thanks for the info ! It's fantastic to know their name and to know they didn't tragically die in the sinking ...

So, they weren't a real couple ? (do you have any other information about them ?)

Last question: what happened ? How come after being an "unidentified couple" they've finally been identified, after all this time ?

Thanks alot Lester !


P.S. And if anyone knows where I can find a bigger version, let me know, thanks alot !
The news isn't all good, Benjamin. Only Mrs Nichols left the ship at Queenstown. Richard Smith was bound for New York, and sadly he never got there.

The best source for large, clear reproductions of the photos is the book Father Browne's Titanic Album. Some can be found online, but generally not for long because the Jesuits own the copyrights, which have another 25 years to run. They probably won't notice, but best lock your doors just in case because history (and Monty Python) have taught us that those guys can strike without warning. Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!

It was only Mrs Nichols who left the ship at Queenstown. Richard Smith sailed to his death.
For more details on Mrs Nichols [and on Richard Smith] I refer you to: Craig Stringer's CD: Titanic People.

Richard Smith was a family friend. Mrs Nichols was travelling to join her husband who was working in Ireland.

Jeffrey Beaudry

I noticed that there is a faint double exposure on this picture. I can't figure out what it is though. Could anyone help? Or am I just seeing things?
Yes, you can just make out wicker furniture and a table with flowers. That shot is thought to have been taken from the First Class entrance area on B deck, looking through an open door into the private promenade of a 'millionaire suite'.

oh ... well, good or Mrs Nichols but it's sad for Mr. Smith

lol, okay, better not provoke the jesuits then ...

yeah, I saw that too Jeffrey - can't really figure out what it exactly is

Hope I'll be able to find it someday ... Father Browne took them for the sake of it (art), not to make money over them ... Anyway, so in 25 years they'll be public property ?


P.S. Thanks alot for all your answers !
Here in the UK (where this website is located) and I think in the US the rule is the international standard of 70 years from the death of the original copyright holder. Browne died in 1960. Some countries, like Australia, have stayed with the more traditional 50-year span.
Bob: I believe that the life plus 70 years rule as stipulated by the Berne Convention (then used outside the U.S.) presumes that the creator holds/held the copyright ownership. If the Jesuits originally held the copyright, then Browne's work would be considered a work for hire, I believe, and the expiration would be 75 years from publication or 100 years from creation, whichever comes first. If Browne assigned to the Jesuits the copyright upon his death, I don't know which term is used. I can ask my intellectual property professor. Btw, we in the colonies only came into 20th century copyright law in 1976, when Congress decided to adopt the Berne Convention rules used internationally.


It is inaccurate,or at least misleading, to say that works published before 1923 fall into the public domain if their copyrights are not renewed. It's hard to read that web page and then read the case it relies on, Twin Books v. Walt Disney, and think the web author and the court are talking about the same case/rules of law. 1923 was only the date Bambi was produced in Germany without copyright notice, which Disney unsuccessfully tried to twist into its own public domain law--foreign copyright did not require copyright notice, only publication, and that did not make Bambi fair game for public domain in the U.S., much to Disney's regret. The actual date for public domain on non-renewed copyrights is 12/31/1963,based upon 1909 law modified in 1992, although renewal rights get complicated when the creator is dead. Assuming a live author or validly transferred rights at death, between 1/1/1964 and 12/31/1977, renewal is automatic, and after that, the 1976 law takes over, which uses a different basis to conform to the rest of the world. For the rudiments of U.S. copyright law, see U.S. Supreme Court case, Eldred v. Ashcroft, 123 S.Ct. 1505, (2003). But there are many permutations the case does not address. I have probably gone into much more detail than necessary here, but 1923 wasn't a red-letter date for anything, even Bambi, and I wouldn't rely on that web page for much, if anything. But each to his own.
Browne did undertake photographic commissions in later life, but his Titanic pictures were taken only in pursuit of his hobby and for his personal album. The negatives, and the intellectual rights pertaining to them, passed to the Jesuit Society after his death. The copyright notices now refer to The Father Browne SJ Collection. Any income derived from the sale of the images goes to the Jesuit Solidarity Fund, which was founded to ease the plight of the unemployed in both Eire and the Northern Counties.