Maids eating with their Masters


Yourj Benig

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Apr 27, 2012
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Can a maid eat with their employers? I made a story and I'm wondering, if Lucy, a personal maid of Abigail and Kelly Campbell can eat with them on ALa Carte or any where... Lucy had a full paid first class ticket and she is a close friend with the two..... can she eat ?
 
Jan 6, 2005
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Yourj: In 1912, most servants of a wealthy person were usually not treated as equals. A lady's maid would generally eat with other servants in the dining rooms available for that purpose. The exception would be a "companion," a servant whose job it was to provide companionship for a lady who had no family. Companions were always female, of course. A companion would dine with her employer, and would generally have a stateroom close to her. The companion fulfilled many of the duties of a maid, but was more equal socially, and would wear regular clothing a bit simpler and quieter than her employer's, not a maid's uniform.
 
Jan 6, 2005
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P.S., Yourj:

If Lucy was a proper lady's maid, and she had a regular First Class ticket that was the kind for a regular passenger, she could have eaten in the First Class dining room so far as White Star was concerned (although not while wearing a maid's uniform). However, it would have been very unusual for a servant to do so, and in fact, probably would have caused some comments from other First Class passengers. The class divisions of 1912 did not permit much tolerance of anything unusual.
 

Yourj Benig

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She was apparently a companion of the two since the sisters are travelling without the elders... Lucy is 24 years of age and her room was near to the sister's room. In my story's scene, Lucy and the sisters were going to eat on the restaurant. But Lucy was critized on her dress because she is wearing a maid's uniform and the steward wouldn't allow her to eat. So they went back to Abigail's room and she lent her some clothes - because her dresses are like for a third class passenger and her brother is also boarding with a third class ticket. -

Historical Fiction - The Titanic - Wattpad
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Uniforms were for house servants - parlour maids, footmen etc. A personal servant like a lady's maid or valet (in the UK or US at least) would generally not be required to wear a uniform but would be expected to dress formally and smartly at all times, so you'd find no Cindarellas in that situation. Their own clothing would be typical of that worn by 2nd Class passengers, but it was quite common for a personal servant to acquire very good quality clothing as cast-offs from present or former employers, and many acquired accents as refined - and sometimes more so! Indeed, one of the reasons why maids and valets were not allowed to use the public facilities in 1st Class was to avoid any possible embarrassments leading on from mistaken class identity!
 

Adam Went

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Apr 28, 2003
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I think a lot of it depended on how lenient the family were. I understand that some families would allow favourite maids and the like to dine with the family at times, although not when they had distinguished guests over for dinner. In recent times of course the lines of society have become more blurred but a century ago, the line between the servant and the master, or richer and poorer was much more prominent. Funnily enough these exact scenes are actually highlighted pretty well in "Downton Abbey" if anyone watches it, in years set around the time of the Titanic disaster.
 

Arun Vajpey

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Apr 21, 2009
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In recent times of course the lines of society have become more blurred but a century ago, the line between the servant and the master, or richer and poorer was much more prominent. Funnily enough these exact scenes are actually highlighted pretty well in "Downton Abbey" if anyone watches it, in years set around the time of the Titanic disaster.
Also in the 70s British TV show Upstairs, Downstairs in which there is a lengthy Titanic sequence.
 

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