Sunday sing hymn service and the a la carte restaurant


Andrew Maheux

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Dec 4, 2000
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Does any body know what other passengers attended the the Sunday hymn-sing in second class, besides Kate Buss, The Carters, Mr. Pain, Mrs. Weisz and Mr. Norman

and does anybody know what other first class passengers dined in the a la Carte Resaurant that night. I know of the Carters, Wideners, Minahans, Major Butt, Mr. Ismay, the duff gordons, Mr. and Mrs. Meyer, Capt. Smith, and I believe Mr. and Mrs. Douglas and Mrs. Smith

Are there any others?

Thanks,

Andrew
 
Apr 26, 2005
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These are the people who came immediatly to my mind:

-Sir Cosmo and Lady Duff Gordon.

-Mr. and Mrs. Lucian Smith.

-Dr. and Mrs. Minahan, and Daisy Minahan.

-Mr. and Mrs. George Widener, Harry Widener, Mr. and Mrs. Carter, Mr. and Mrs. Ryerson, Captain Smith, Major Archibald Butt, Mr. and Mrs. Thayer.

-Madame Aubart (most probably, because she assured the White Star she would dine in the restaurant every evening to have a rebate of five pounds on her ticket).

-Colonel and Mrs. John Jacob Astor, Mr. and Mrs. Isidor Straus (according to Lady Duff Gordon, they dined together on the last night).

-Mr. and Mrs. Walter Douglas.

-Bruce Ismay and Dr. O'Loughlin (the ship's surgeon).

-Mrs. Cassebeer (I know she was there, although I don't remember where I read this).
 

Ben Holme

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Feb 11, 2001
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Hi Andrew,

In addition to the passengers mentioned by Charles, the following were present in the restaurant:

-Mr. and Mrs. Henry B. Harris*

-Gertrude Maybelle Thorne (presumably George Rosenshine also)

Re. 2nd class service. Marion Wright was also present and even sang a solo.

Hope this helps.

Charles - Could you specify your source for the Ryersons having dined in the restaurant? I must have missed that one.

Regards,
Ben

*I understand there is some evidence indicative that the Futrelles dined with the Harrises on the last night. The relevent material may be included in May Futrelle's account to the Boston Globe (Post?) which unfortunately, I have not seen.
 
Apr 26, 2005
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I can confirm that Mr. and Mrs. Harris dined with Jacques and May Futrelle the last night. I knew I was forgetting a table, Ben!

From Mrs. Harris' account:

“Although I was suffering torture, I knew I would feel it no less if I stayed in my room, so I insisted on going to a dinner party in the Ritz Room (...) When I entered the Ritz Room I had a reception from all the diners, most of whom I had not met. (...) The table to which we were shown was next to that of Bruce Ismay. (...) His party numbered ten or twelve. (...)”
 
Apr 26, 2005
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Ben:

RE: The Ryersons

Hmm, I always thought they were invited to the Widener party, but I can't seem to find any confirmation to this in my files. It must be an error of mine, unless someone else proves the Ryersons really were part of the Widener party. Sorry for that.
 

Pat Cook

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Apr 27, 2000
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Hi Andrew,

Regarding other passengers attending the hymn-sing, you can also include Lawrence Beesley, who of course wrote of the event, and Marion Wright, who sang solos to Douglas Norman's accompaniment.

Best regards,
Cook
 

Ben Holme

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Feb 11, 2001
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Hi Charles,

Thanks for confirming that Harris/Futrelle dined the last night in the restaurant. It's interesting, Mrs. Harris allegedly told the family of Emil Brandies that he dined with them on the last night. I assume that extract is from the 1932 edition of "Liberty Magazine"? If so, here's another one I've seen many snippets of without ever managing to secure a copy of the full article!

Ben
 
Apr 26, 2005
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When I say that I can confirm that the Harrises dined with the Futrelles, I am merely trusting the words of someone who has Mrs. Futrelle's account, because I don't have it myself (much to my regret!).

The Emil Brandeis thing is very interesting. Mr. ands Mrs. Harris played bridge in the B-deck lounge on Sunday along with many other passengers and if I remember correctly, Mr. Brandeis was present. But I've never heard anyone proposing that Brandeis dined with them. But it's very possible. In her account, Mrs. Harris mentions having been invited to a party in the Ritz restaurant (see the quote above). I'm sure they were more than four (The Futrelles and them). Emil Brandeis might very well have dined with them, but without any strong confirmation other than Mrs. Harris' words, I guess we can't be sure about it.

Charles
 

Ben Holme

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Feb 11, 2001
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Hello Charles,

Good point. I had never really considered the possibility of the Futrelles and Brandeis having joined them for dinner on Sunday evening. I find it interesting that Mrs. Harris recalled being *inivted* to a dinner party. I wonder who did the inviting? Another man whom the Harrises must surely have met at some stage on board was John D. Baumann.

Do you know where I might obtain a copy of Rene Harris' full account?

Thanks,
Ben
 
Apr 26, 2005
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I'm personally convinced that Brandeis was dining with them, but as I said, without further proof...

Does the “Liberty Magazine” still hold on? If so, you shall have no problem getting a copy from their archives for a ridiculous fee. Your local library might even have copies of it.

If you still have no chance finding it, email me privately.
 
Dec 7, 2000
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Charles, I think that Lucile was wrong in saying that the Astors and Strauses were in the restaurant that evening. Lucile no doubt had also (or regularly) dined in the D deck dining room, so her memories of these two couples were from there. According to the Straus dining room steward, both dined in the D deck dining saloon - see his testimony for more details. I'm sure the Astors were on D deck as well.

As for the Ryersons, they never dined in public. They had their meals taken to their cabins.

Also, I'm not so sure that Brandeis was with the Harrises/Futrelles in the Restaurant. Renee had broken her arm and was in pain. It was clear she didn't want to dine anywhere. I presume she would have dined just with her closest friends on Titanic - the Futrelles. I think that Renee made up some stuff straight after the disaster to console the hearts of relatives. She doesn't even mention Brandeis in her 1932 account. I'm not saying he wasn't there. I'm just not convinced that he was.

Daniel.
 

Ben Holme

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Feb 11, 2001
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Daniel,

You're quite correct that the Strauses dined alone in the saloon on Sunday evening. Curiosuly, I hadn't considered Burke's testimony, which is quite clear on this. However, I'm not sure if we should exclude the Astors based on this evidence.

Re. Ryersons. Are you sure it was the whole Ryerson family who chose to dine in private? I'm certain they were not part of the Widener party, but my understanding was that Emily Ryerson dined alone in her cabin.

Regards,
Ben
 
Dec 7, 2000
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Hi Ben,

Good point about the Ryersons. While it is clear that at least Mrs. Ryerson dined alone in her cabin, I don't think I have seen anything to say that the rest of the family did the same. Likewise I'm sure none of the Ryersons were part of the Widener party, but that doesn't rule out the fact that they *might* have been in the restaurant.

She did say that she and her husband used to walk on the promenade when it was dark and everyone went to dinner, so that rules out the both of them from usually attending dinner. My guess is that perhaps the children dined in the cabins during that time, or in the dining saloon.

Daniel.
 
Apr 26, 2005
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Daniel,

Renée did say that she was feeling great pain, but she also said that she decided to accept an invitation to join a party in the Ritz nonetheless. The reservation for this party must have been done the previous day, and judging from Renée's words, included much more people than just her husband and the Futrelles.

I'm pretty sure Mrs. Harris decided to join the so-called party nonetheless because there were more than just her close friend waiting for her. She probably didn't want to break that party. If the Futrelles had been the only guests, then I'm sure it would have been easy for Renée to cancel. The Futrelles would have understood and sympathized with her.

Regards,

Charles
 
May 12, 2005
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Daniel,

I'm not able to say if Lucile was mistaken or not in claiming the Astors and Strauses dined together in the restaurant on April 14. It's possible she confused the occasion with an earlier dinner, either in the restaurant or in the dining room. However, there's no evidence I'm aware of to suggest the Duff Gordons ate in the dining room at any time.

Lucile, like a good many other regular first-class travellers, was used to some of the German ships which had the "Ritz" restaurants aboard and she may have been spoiled to this type of more intimate dining. I must say the pictures I've seen of the dining room on Titanic show a very imposing, sprawling space, not at all warm and welcoming.

Remember, too that the Duff Gordons were travelling incognito to avoid attention, a concession the publicity-happy Lucile had made to spend more quiet time with hubby Cosmo. So it doesn't seem likely they'd have made an appearance in the main dining room where she'd have been seen by nearly everyone. Another indication that she may have opted for the a la carte restaurant in lieu of the main saloon is that I've found several references that she had a special corner in the restaurant of the Paris Ritz always reserved for her; so it makes sense that she may have repeated this preference on shipboard. We know, for instance, from Walter Lord in his article "The Maiden Voyage" (American Heritage, December 1955)that Lucile and Cosmo (joined by "Franks")occupied a small table in an alcove in Titanic's restaurant.

For those interested I'll quote what Lucile has to say about that now legendary last dinner in Titanic's restaurant April 14:

_________________________________________________

(Discretions and Indiscretions, pp 165-166)

"...I remember that last meal on the Titanic very well. We had a big vase of beautiful daffodils on the table which were as fresh as if they had just been picked. Everybody was very gay, and at neighboring tables people were making bets on the probable time of this record-breaking run. Bruce Ismay, Chairman of the White Star Line, was dining with the ship's doctor next to our table, and I remember that several men appealed to him as to how much longer we should be at sea. Mr. Ismay was most confident and said that undoubtedly the ship would establish a record.

Further along the room the Wideners and the Thayers were dining with the Captain and others and there was a great deal of laughter and chatter from their table. It was the last time I saw them. At another table sat Colonel Astor and his young bride. They were coming back to New York after a honeymoon in Europe and I thought how much in love they were - poor things, it was the last few hours they were to have together. They were joined by Isidor Straus and his wife. These two so openly adored one another that we used to call them "Darby and Joan" on the ship. They told us laughingly that in their long years of married life they had never been separated for a day or night..."

_________________________________________________

Randy
 
E

Ed Hachey

Guest
I know this is late to get into this discussion thread, but...

I remember reading that the Ryersons were returning home due to the accidential death of their older son. If this is true, it could explain their limited mention others'recollations of the social aspect ot the voyage.

This or a lack of an invitation could explain their non-attendance to the Wideners' dinner. When you look at both the passenger and guest lists, the Wideners obviously drew some sort of line as to who to invite - for example, the Wideners owned IMM stock and Mr. Widener's father was on its board and yet Bruce Ismay wasn't at the dinner.

Just thought I could maybe add something to this discussion.
 

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