Second Annual Titanic Texas Weekend October 2003


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Jun 8, 2002
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Dear All:

Following on last year's rowdy Texas gathering in Corsicana, another meeting of members,
honorary members and new friends of the "Texas Titanic Mafia" is scheduled for the weekend of October 17-19, 2003, in Salado, Texas. This meeting is open to everyone because frankly, we need fresh meat. We're inbred, and that's not good.

Salado is an historic Texas town with a number of surprising "Titanic" connections. It is also a popular and well-publicized tourist destination in Texas with numerous charming old homes, bed-and-breakfast inns and restaurants, including that of Salado resident Gene Street who also owns the "Texas Embassy" restaurant in London, housed in Oceanic House, the former main booking office of the White Star Line.

Attending the meeting, thus far, are "Mafia" members Randy Bryan Bigham, world-class authority on the life and times of Lucile, Lady Cosmo Duff Gordon (collection to be displayed); Pat Cook (and wife, Rose Ann), playwright, raconteur and leading authority on Lawrence Beesley (collection to be displayed); John Hemmert (and his wife, Pat) a member of the "inner circle" of those involved in the exploration of the wreck of the "Republic", an authority on and collector of uniforms and Second Class china of the White Star Line (to be displayed); Roy Mengot, whose award-winning model of the wreck of the "Titanic", among other items in his collection, will be on display; and Elizabeth Silverthorne and her daughter, Carol, relatives of First Class Passenger Spencer Silverthorne, with perhaps a few other surprise guests and collections.

Other details of the meeting, as they develop, including travel and accomodation suggestions, will appear on this thread. But a "word to the wise": Salado is a popular destination, so early reservations are advised.

For further information, contact:

Dr. Douglas B. Willingham
Armstrong-Adams House
P. O. Box 767
Salado, Texas 76571-0767
tel: 254/ 947-9248
e-mail: [email protected]
 
Mar 20, 2000
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It's all about Texas! If Titanicdom hasn't figured that out yet, we need a new press agent!

Well, I am glad to learn of the addition of Roy Mengot to the list. It'll be an honor to meet him.

A few words in behalf of our host: for those who didn't get to come to last year's Texas bash, "Dr. Doug" is a class act, an all-round great guy, fun and friendly, not at all the aloof, moody ringleader of the "Texas Mafia," as has been rumored. I think that distinction goes to Pat Cook (or maybe Phil Gowan; they trade off mafia duties so much I forget).

Anyway, Doug's good-natured, warm family, including his beautiful daughter (his pride and joy) will also be at this gathering, so any out-of-state guests can be assured of a hearty, "gen-u-ine" Texas welcome.

Salado is a jewel of a village, very lush and picturesque (not a tumble-weed in sight) and is also very elegant. It's no wonder so many interesting people have chosen to live there. Its Titanic connections go beyond being the home of the owner of London's Texas Embassy. Besides being the home of Doug and his family (who are descendants of Archibald Willingham Butt), it's the home of Spencer Silverthorne's niece and her family.

I hope to see some of the old gang this fall. I hear a couple of new faces, maybe even a surprise "celeb" or two, are planning a little drop-by ....

I live near Dallas so any of you needing directions or other help at all getting out to Salado, feel free to contact me as well:

Home: 972-878-5517
Work: 972-875-3801
E-mail: [email protected]
 

Pat Cook

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Apr 26, 2000
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Aloof? Me? Aloof? I've been aboard, away, astounded, aghast, accousted, abridged, awash, even at times I may enter a room with aplomb, but aloof? See, now I have to go look up that word.

By the way, I just acquired a lovely full sized brass replica of a ship's telegraph, which I shall bring along, with my other odd and ends of Titaniciana, just to add flavor to the room.

See youse guys then.

Best regards all
Cook
 

Erik Wood

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Aug 24, 2000
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I am thinking of attending this here rip roaring event. But with Cook using all those fancy words on the board I don't if I will be able to keep up. I am a sailor and most of the words I know are not suppose to be repeated in public.
 
Jun 8, 2002
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Erik,

Not to worry. Cook is not aloof or even affected, except by Beesley stuff. Affable, yes, as long as we keep him on his medication.

And wait'll you see his collection!

'Hope you can join us!

Doug
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
I wish I could join you guys out there but things will be getting busy at work again and I really need to save some moolah for the hellidays holidays!

Guess I'll have to settle for the incriminating photos.
wink.gif
 

John Hemmert

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Oct 16, 2002
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Hi Doug!

Looking forward to this coming meeting, the last one was a blast!
Will drag along both my Titanic/White Star Line gear, plus all legally viewable "Republic" stuff as well. Going to be a good time!

Best regards!
John.
 

John Hemmert

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Oct 16, 2002
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Ahoy Cap'n Wood!

It'd be fantastic if you could attend! I've definitely appreciated your insightful comments on this list, and would love to meet you! (Mind you, if you bring along any repro WSL caps, I might buy one, as I could use a spare... Are they from Robert Anderson of Vancouver, or your own production?)

I'd love to get your views on some "Republic" and "Titanic" details I've been digging into if you have the time.

Best regards!
John Hemmert.
 

John Hemmert

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Oct 16, 2002
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Randy,

You have no idea how glad I am that you're attending and bringing your collection. When I told my wife about it, after the last meeting, she was frantic to see it! (She's a "historical costumer", you know.) This is going to be great.

Definitely look forward to seeing you and the others again!

Best regards!
John Hemmert.
 

George Behe

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Dec 11, 1999
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Hi, all!

Pat and I are hoping to attend, too. Although luggage weight is always a consideration on a short vacation, I'd like to bring my album of period Titanic and Carpathia postcards (290+), Olympic postcards (150+) plus a few 'special' items. (I'd have to lug these things onto the plane as carry-on luggage, though, since I'd never trust the stuff out of my sight in the luggage compartment.)

And, to paraphrase a well-known Titanic passenger and bibliophile, "If the old plane goes down, the little postcard album goes with me." :)

All my best,

George
 
Jun 8, 2002
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Greetings, all!

Here is the preliminary itinerary:

Friday, October 17

Set-up of exhibits of collections in the Salado Historical Society Museum Room at the Salado Civic Center

Informal reception at Doug's house about 5-7PM, then walk three doors down Main Street to a no-host Tex-Mex dinner at The Salado Mansion, sister restaurant to London's Texas Embassy. www.salado-mansion.com

Saturday, October 18

10AM-12noon: Open house at the Salado Historical Society. This event, sponsored by the Society, will be open to the public.

The afternoon is free to enjoy the historic village of Salado. Great dining, shopping, golf or perhaps a self-guided, drive-by audio cassette tour of the numerous restored homes and historic sites. Salado has one of the largest collections of good examples of the Greek Revival Style in the state with at least 18 properties and sites listed in the National Register of Historic places. www.salado.com

5-7:30PM Wine and cheese reception hosted by Doug's parents, Dr. and Mrs. Welborn K. Willingham

8PM Dinner at the world-famous Stagecoach Inn. We have a room reserved in the original portion of this property built about 1854

Sunday, October 19

Some of us will have to get back to the real world of jobs, school, etc., but I hope some will be able to extend their stay and enjoy the many attractions in Central Texas.

Of course there is no fee for this event. The Salado Historical Society is providing their room and refreshments for our Saturday meeting. Your lodging and meals are on your own, and it's important to make your reservations as soon as possible. The Texas State Bar Association is also meeting in Salado this weekend, and there are no blocks of rooms pre-reserved for us.
 
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Here are some travel and accomodation suggestions:

Salado is on I35, about an hour north of Austin and less than three hours south of Dallas. The Killeen,TX, airport is the closest--less than 30 minutes away.

Salado has a wide array of lodgings. Here are a couple of ideas:

The Inn at Salado (B&B). This is directly across the street from Doug's house. tel.800/724-0027
www.inn-at-salado.com

Levi Tenney House (B&B). Also handy to Doug's house. tel.254/947-1003
www.touringtexas.com/levi

Inn on the Creek (B&B). Beautiful property with weekend dining (if you want to get away from our noisy group!). Nearby but not walking distance to Doug's house and Main Street. tel.877/947-5554
www.inncreek.com

Stagecoach Inn (standard motel). Those lawyers have tentatively gobbled up all available rooms, but they might release some closer to the meeting. Call Kim after September 17. tel.254/947-5111

Super 8 (standard motel). Close, clean, convenient. tel.254/947-5000.

If you want more information on other great B&Bs, call INNkeeping With the Times, our local reservation service. tel.800/439-3828

Of course you can call or e-mail me, too, if you need help. tel.254/947-9248 or [email protected]
 

Pat Cook

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Apr 26, 2000
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Wow, this thing is going to be a right brawl!

Finally get a chance to clap eyes on George B., his lovely and longsuffering wife and Cap'n Erik!

Must remember to pack bail money.

Best regards, all around,
Cookie
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
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Hi, Pat!

I hope it'll come to pass -- I'm looking forward to seeing you, Rose Ann, Randy, Doug, John and everyone else!

(By the way, I've never had an opportunity to meet a show business personage like you whose theatrical accomplishments have been memorialized in a formal videotaped tribute; it'll be a real treat for me to finally meet the man behind the string of stage hits that includes "Our American Cousin," "Eleven Angry Men," "Springtime For Hitler" etc.) :)

Doug, you wrote:

>Friday, October 17: Set-up of exhibits of collections in the Salado Historical >Society Museum Room at the Salado Civic Center.

Does this mean that the exhibit will be a one-day (Friday) affair and that the Mafia will be spending that day at the Civic Center? (What time do you think should we arrive there in order to set up our displays?)

All my best,

George
 
Dec 13, 1999
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O.K. you two - best behaviour please - don't let me down! Just sorry Alma and I can't be there with you but, as you know, we are not allowed back into the U.S.A. until that business with the customs officer and the balloon is sorted out.
Have a great time and give our love to Rose Ann & Pat (they both deserve medals!)
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
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Hi, Geoff!

>Just sorry Alma and I can't be there with you

So am I, Geoff -- it would have been wonderful if Pat and I could have gotten together with you and Alma. (Maybe one of these years. . . )

Take care, my friend, and please give Alma a hug for us.

Sincerely,

George and Pat
 
Mar 20, 2000
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John, George, Geoff, etc (sounds like ET's answer to the Beatles)

Good to "see" you guys. Have missed you around this here place.

John - I am glad that your wife is coming. I look forward to meeting her and to seeing you again. You had to leave way too early before so I'm glad that you will be in for the long haul this time.

George - You old rascal. We will finally meet. And to think I'll also get to meet poor, dear Pat, bless her long-suffering soul. Look forward to seeing those albums and to finally getting to talk to you in person. It's about time.

Geoff - Well, Mr. W you and your delightful lady COULD fly over as well and crash the party in your legendary style - perhaps pushing a cart of refreshments or even BEING the refreshment, as you have long threatened!

I look forward to meeting the others like Cap'n Erik and several surprise guests whose presence will make for a party like no other.

I will be attending with my sister and 5 year old nephew, who is interested in Titanic but does not care a whit for my interest in Lucile! He asked me just today "Uncle Randy, are you going to show people those old dresses again?" I haven't stopped laughing.

Best to all,
Randy
 
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