Marconi Mystery


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John Lamoreau

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I have a Titanic puzzle I am trying to solve. One of the first Marconi-grams sent from a survivor on the Carpathia was one which read:
"Marihays, care Western Union, New York
All safe on Carpathia bound for New York
Margaret"

I have always assumed this was sent by Margaret Hays who lived in New York and that the Marihays might have been two words transcribed as one (Mrshays). She was from New York. But I also know that Margaret Hays did send a later Marconi-gram to Mrs. Hays at her home address telling her when she would arrive.

Do you have any guesses as to who this first Margaret might be?

Thanking you in advance.
John
 
Oct 15, 2006
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Could it be Mrs Margaret Welles Swift? I know she was a first class passenger who lived in New York and was rescued in lifeboat number 8...With Miss Margaret Hays, I think it is the only possibility. But, this marconigram is from Miss Hays. As you said, Marihays could possibly be a mistake during the transmission.

Sorry for my english, my native language is french as I'm from Quebec province, in Canada.
 

John Lamoreau

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Jonathan, Your English is very good. My last name is very French: Lamoreau. But I do not speak French. Thank you for your Titanic thoughts on this Marconi-gram. I own the original and would really like to find out who sent it. Best to you. John Lamoreau
 
Oct 15, 2006
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Thanks for your comments on my english...I found an another possibilities for this marconigram author...It could be Miss Elizabeth Margaret Burns, Master Douglas Spedden's nurse. She was rescued in lifeboat 3 and have family in the New Jersey and New York city, if I remembered correctly.

It could be Miss Margaret Delia Devaney, third class passenger from Irelade who was travelling to New York to rejoin her two sisters and her brother who were living in New York. She was rescued in collapsible C. But, I don't know if third class passengers coudl send marconigram on Carpathia. I kenew on Titanic, they could'nt because it was too expansive. Maybe on Carpathia, Marconigrams were free for Titanic survivors...

Another possibility is Margaretta Corning Spedden, miss Burn's employer. Wife of Mr Frederic Spedden and mother of Douglas Spedden, the party come from New York city and were rescued in lifeboat 3. But, if Mrs Spedden was the real marconigram author, I think that she would said that her husband and her child survived too, no? But maybe the all means all the family...

There were many Margaret on Titanic, many of them were Irish immigrants from third class. But, I ignored all the Margaret who did not survive the sinking(It is impossible that a victim sent a marconigram no?:p) and all the Margaret who were not born in New York, or, lived in New York or had relatives living in New York. We are left with 5 possibilities:
-Miss Margaret Hays
-Mrs Margaretta Spedden
-Miss Margaret Burns
-Mrs Margaret Swift
-Miss Margaret Devanys

The more probable of these possibilities are Miss Hays, I think...

But, you are a lucky one to have this marconigram. How do you have it? If it is a family inheritance, you should ask some family members for more information...

All my best...

Jonathan
 

John Lamoreau

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Jonathan, Thank you for your work on this mystery. I have also wondered about Mrs. Spedden and her servant. Also since the Margaret who wrote this stated "all safe" it could be the Spedden family. Margaret Hays also had all of her travelling friends saved as well. Any Margaret who had family member die would be excluded. i have collected Titanic items for years and own three of the original Marconigrams from the Carpathia that I acquired at a public auction in New York. I know who wrote two of them (Leila Meyer, 1st class passenger and Mabel Bennett, Stewardess). Some of my favorite items are letter written by F.D. Millet who died in the sinking. How long have you been interested in the Titanic? Thank you again for the help. John
 
Oct 15, 2006
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'' Any Margaret who had family member die would be excluded.''

Then, Mrs Margaret Swift is excluded. She was travelling with Dr Alice Leader, Mr Frederick Kenyon and Mrs Marion Kenyon. Dr Alice Leader and Mrs Kenyon survived but Mr Kenyon died. It excluded Miss Margaret Devaney too. She was travelling with two friends, Miss Mary Delia Burns and Miss Kate Dargadon and the two young women died in the sinking.

'' i have collected Titanic items for years and own three of the original Marconigrams from the Carpathia that I acquired at a public auction in New York. ''

I'm envious. I lived in Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean, a little region without many population and without any Titanic event...

''Some of my favorite items are letter written by F.D. Millet who died in the sinking. ''

Did you have the letter he wrote during the call at Queenstown where he talked about the american women who had dogs and treated her husbands like pets?

''How long have you been interested in the Titanic''
Since I'm 5 years old. I'm now 15 years old and passionate by Titanic. I'm almost obsessed by Titanic. And you?
 

John Lamoreau

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Jonathan, It is great to hear back from you. I wish I owned the Titanic letter written by Millet! That is a great letter. I own three of his letters and two from his sister. One of his letters was written just before he left for Rome. It has great content in it. I have posted it on this site. You can find it at the page for Millet on this site. Titanic author George Behe just gave me his best guess on who wrote the "Margaret" Marconigram. He sent the following message: "Although the "Marihays" address brings Margaret Hays to mind, my own guess is that the sender was probably Margaretta Spedden. (The reference to "All safe..." definitely suggests that the sender was was travelling with a party, and Mrs. Spedden was with her husband and son -- whereas Margaret Hays was traveling alone.) I'm afraid I don't know who the addressee was, though, since "Marihays" was apparently a cable address." My understanding is that Margaret Hays was travelling with friends. I will keep checking leads. Thanks for your help. I am impressed you have been a Titanic fan for 2/3rds of your life! Best to you. John
 
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