I have since found out, thanks to Inger Sheil, that Beesley's first wife, Cissy, was suffering from a respiratory illness called Phthisis for the last three years of their marriage. She finally succumbed in 1906, leaving Lawrence with a 3 years old son (Alec) to raise.
I only know that his brother Frank lived in Toronto but no address on him so far. This information came to me from Lawrence's daughter.
I'm still trying to find out just WHICH brother (could've been Frank) was sailing on the Oceanic (mislabeled in Beesley's book) when they came upon the bodies adrift in the lifeboat.
Lawrence Beesley had one son with his first wife and one with his second. I frankly don't remember if I covered this in the article but his second son (Hugh) was a pilot in the RAF during WWII and, while piloting a 'flying boat', disappeared off the coast of Africa. The family never heard anything further, as far as I know.
Lawrence and his second wife had two daughters and 'Mollie' already had a daughter when the two married. I can tell you that the two daughters (Laurien and Waveney) and step daughter (Dinah) are all living in England. However, out of respect of their privacy I cannot give out their addresses, as I'm sure you understand. Also, Laurien is not in good health; she has been battling Alzheimer's for some time now.
I believe (as a result of discussions with my 93 year old grandmother), that my great-grandfather was the cousin of Lawrence Beesley. As I am trying to research my family's geneaology, I was obviously ecstatic to read your article relating to Lawrence (even detailing his parents and siblings!). I realise, as you posted to another contributor, that it is not appropriate to pass on contact details of Lawrence's descendants, but maybe you have, or could obtain, further details of Lawrence's ancestry, information which may well be known to his daughters for example. Obviously my intention is to discover the identity of Lawrence's own grand-father and the uncle who may be my great-great-grandfather!
I also approached Philip Gowan (the contributor of the death certificate), over a year ago on this topic, but he was unable to provide much more information. He did tell me of Dinah and another possible contact (probably the grandson you speak of), but I am currently working abroad and have not persued the topic with the vigor is deserves. I feel slightly guilty in that you appear to have performed the work for me! (for which I am extremely grateful, thanks).
Please, please, please contact me! (apologies also for filling the message board with such a verbose posting!)
I was very excited to see your post. I hope I can be of some use in your geneology quest and have sent you a private email with a bit more information. Hopefully, we can exchange info which will fill in some missing pieces for both of us. Unfortunately I have Lawrence's father (Henry) showing up in Wirksworth (1880 census records) but where he came from or who his parents were I still haven't been able to find out (earlier census records show no Beesleys in the area at all).
His daughter passed along that he was (according to a family story) a great-great-etc.-grandson of Sir Richard Awkright but we (Lawrence's grandson, Nicholas, and I) haven't been able to connect the two as yet.
Hope you can give us a fresh lead and that we can provide you with a few needed pieces to the puzzle as well.
This is so funny, I was reading Beesley's book again and was thinking the same thing. Who is that passenger, what was their story, as I read through. I decided I was going to research it and try to do an article on it. Are you in the process of making an article on this? I was just wondering. Loved reading your article, Beesley fascinates me.
Did you ever find out which brother of Beesley's was traveling on the Oceanic when they came upon the bodies floating adrift in the lifeboat? You mentioned it could have been Frank, but I just wanted to know if you verified it.
Actually. it was Arthur, Lawrence's younger brother, who did, indeed as Beesley wrote, come over on the Celtic. I got that from the Ellis Island records - the time frame fits perfectly the time Lawrence was writing his book. And as read (and I first misunderstood) it reads that he (Arthur) was on the Celtic and happened to see a Titanic lifeboat.
This is one of Beesley's most confusing passages for me. On one hand he states the Celtic picked up the lifeboat with the three bodies and just after this he mentions his brother, again naming the Celtic, seeing a lifeboat - this sentence seems a bit awkward unless you read "Oceanic" for the first "Celtic" - then it makes sense. Could just be a typo I guess.
Here's what I've found on Lawrence's brothers in Canada, chiefly from the Ellis Island Records. On Franks first trip he traveled on the Celtic, leaving Liverpool on March 20, 1913, and arriving in New York on March 30. Traveling with Arthur, the youngest Beesley brother, they both state they are visiting "Friend - Arthur C. Rayment, 35 Grenadier Road, West Toronto."
Frank's second trip, arriving February 19, 1915, this time going Second Class on the Cymric, shows him to be 28, married and living in Canada. Also with Frank was his wife, Annie Kathleen, age 22 - 5' 6", with blue eyes, she was born in London. The destination of the two is listed as: 280 Waverly Road, Toronto.