Seeking Titanic scarce editions


Don Bolling

There are copies of Lady Lucy Duff Gordon's autobiography DISCRETIONS AND INDISCRETIONS at These are $185 to well over $200. There are 3 chapters devoted to the Titanic disaster. The copy I have is battered up w/ photos missing but at least it only cost $10.00 at a public book sale. I just thought if there were those out there better-heeled than I & wanted a copy of this interesting book I'd pass on the word. I don't know how rare it is, though. I'd think it sold well in its day since Lady Gordon seems to have been very famous - apart from the Titanic.

The book is medium sized, 5 by 8 in., light grey cloth w/ decorative red lettering, is 333 pages, 23 chapters (Titanic chapters are chapters 13-15), has 20 photos (or should, including a great frontispiece pic of Lady Duff Gordon behind a clear protective sheet).

The 1st chapter re: Titanic relates to her experiences during the sinking, the 2nd on the rescue, & the 3rd on the hearings of the Board of Trade.

I found the account very revealing & got a different - more favorable -impression of the Duff Gordons on reading it. Lady Duff Gordon writes quite well & there are points that are very emotional.

Here's an especially moving excerpt:

"Many years ago I promised my husband that one day I would tell the true story of the most tragic chapter in our lives & vindicate his honor, yet it is only now, after his death, that I am able to do so. For myself I would have been content enough to let it rest, for I do not altogether believe in uncovering old hurts, but he would have wished me to do it, and I owe it to the memory of one who was in every respect the bravest and most honorable of men...I suppose the most terrible thing that can happen to a man is for him to be accused of cowardice for however unjust the accusation may have been it leaves a stain which can never be wiped out, at least not in his lifetime, for we are more charitable in our judgement of the dead...Now a man can be accused of all sorts of things and get away with them, and without losing the respect of other men, but call him a coward and you get back to something primitive, and his own kind will turn on him and make him feel it for the rest of his life. At least that is what happened in my husband's case. He never lived down the shame of the charges that were brought against him, and from that time he became a changed man. He never spoke much about it, but I know his heart was broken..."
Apr 11, 2001
Just realized from scanning this board of postings how lucky I was to pick up a Bernard Walker UNSINKABLE TITANIC first, autographed for 25.00 in 1990 and the Gracie for 49.00 the same year. Good grief-now I need insurance and a fireproof safe!/shelley

Mike Norton

OK, I have a very good copy of Home From The Sea by Captain Arthur Rostron for sale. It aint cheap though. I'd sell my copy for $185 or best offer. I also have numerous SIGNED copies of.....drumroll please....."Wreck of the Titan" by Morgan Robertson (also known as "Futility"). These are the 1912 versions. (I would give anyone $1000 for an 1898 copy. I also have a complete matching set of Robertsons books for sale. A signed copy of "Titan" is going for $250 and the full set of Robertson's works is going for $500. The full set does NOT have a signed "Titan" copy but it DOES have a copy of "Titan" with the set. It's just not signed.

For those who are interested, I have at least two copies of MANY of Morgan Robertsons books and several of them are first editions, not reprints.

I am going on vacation tomorrow and won't be back for a week or so, so if you send me a note and I don't reply for a bit, don't get upset.

In about two weeks (maybe three) I will be selling on eBay a nicely framed picture of Captain Rostron framed alongside an original postcard of the Carpathia mailed from the Carpathia exactly 5 months after the Titanic sank. As you may know, Capt. Rostron was on the Carpathia until early 1913. The card was mailed and reads in part "The captain is a fine man and deserves all the praise he has received". Also framed with the photo is an actual ticket stub from the Carpathia from early 1913 and, last but not least, an actual autograph of Sir Arthur Rostron himself found in the "autograph section" on the back of a menu from the Berengaria, Capt. Rostrons last ship before retirement. The opening bid will probably be around $800. I have personally been collecting Titanic related stuff for ten years and have only seen Rostron autographs two times and I bought them both. All signatures I sell are authentic and have a lifetime guarantee. I have a very good rating on eBay with zero negative feedback and a huge majority of the items I have sold have been Titanic related antique books, many with autographs.

Mike Norton

Senan Molony

Jan 30, 2004
$185 for Home From The Sea, eh...?

A la Phil Gowan I am going to indulge in some self-congratulation after getting a pristine 1931 First Edition of the Rostron autobiography for a piffling, nay a lousy, TEN BUCKS.

Those of you who saw it on the Internet and knew some other guy was bound to have snapped it up first - well, finally, I was *that guy*, after being back in the queue with you so many times.

When they sent it off to Oul' Ireland for that measly pittance, they said they had received over 140 email enquiries. Hard luck, folks - but you surely wouldn't begrudge me...

When it arrived safe and sound and in pristine nick apart from some stamps at the front, it was certainly a case of Whoop Whoop Whoop Dance Around the Table (WWWDAT).

It is now in my Titanic bookcase, having been speedily committed to memory at one sitting.

The moral of the story: You don't have to pay the high fees demanded. The fisherman or fisherwoman will always get lucky from time to time.

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