Thoughts Appreciated on this Postcard


Sean T.

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Hello,

I was hoping to ask for some help on securing some more information about an interesting postcard in my collection. This came to me by way of online auction and didn't give much thought at first as these old Cunarder cards pop up pretty often online. I did like the year of the postage and upon a little closer inspection found that the day, location, and name of the author set the scene for what could possibly be a collectible item.

The card is dated by the author April 25, 1912 which falls just 10 days after the Titanic was lost and about a week after the Carpathia arrived in New York with her survivors. The post cancel collected at Hudson Terminal Station in New York on April 26, 1912 verifies this date. This of course places the card in New York in late April of 1912.

What makes this much more interesting is that the author appears to sign her name as Adelaide. The message on the card reads (at least by my interpretation), "Apr. 25, 1912 Miss Lloyd and I sailing at 12 to-day- Will write you from the other side. With Love Adelaide." This card is then addressed to a Mrs. (S?) (J?) Donaldson in Ionia, Michigan. From this we can deduce that the author and a friend are going to be leaving New York by way of steamer and are most likely making their way across the Atlantic.

Now where this card gets potentially very interesting is the name of the author. She signs as Adelaide which matches the name of one of the survivors of that fateful night, 2nd Class passengers Mrs. Alice Adelaide Louch. Via information obtained from this site about her, I found out that she arrived on the 18th like the rest and stayed in New York until the 25th which is by chance the date that this card was written. On the 25th it reads that she boarded the White Star Liner R.M.S. Celtic on its eastbound voyage back to England. This matches the day that she was set to leave and by way of newspapers from the time I could find that the Celtic was set to leave New York on the 25th on an eastbound voyage.

Although nothing quite concrete but there seems to be a decent list of events that match up. Of course with something like this there is room for doubt. The author signs as Adelaide but Mrs. Louch's first name was Alice so I am not sure if she went by Adelaide or Alice. Also cannot find much about her accompanying friend and the addressee of the card. Lastly, the card is of the Cunarders Saxonia/Ivernia and not of the Celtic which is a little strange.

So now I open this up to the forum, any and all help is much appreciated and if not many thanks for reading.

All the best.
 

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lostinspace

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was hoping to ask for some help on securing some more information about an interesting postcard in my collection. This came to me by way of online auction and didn't give much thought at first as these old Cunarder cards pop up pretty often online.


Hi Sean,

An interesting postcard, though quite a longshot. You may want to take a look at this old (1999) post titled "Alice Adelaide Louch" responded to (yesterday!) by Michael David Louch. Here is the link:
I have no idea if the original post is accurate, but there may have been two people on board by the name of Louch?

Regards,
Dave
 
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Arun Vajpey

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I understood from Mrs Louch's bio on ET that she and her husband Charles Louch were travelling to the US to visit Charles' bother William Louch, who lived and worked in California. Charles Louch died in the disaster and that would explain his widow's early return to the UK on board the Celtic.

Under those circumstances I find it a bit strange that she should send a card to someone in Michigan, but of course, it might have been a previous acquaintance. But is Mrs Donaldson's address on the card sufficient to reach her by mail? In 1912 Ionia had a population of over 5000 and I would have thought a house number and street name would be required.

It might be worthwhile to check in the present Ionia town records of a record of a Donaldson family living there in 1912.
 
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Jane55

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Hi Sean, I've been doing a bit of digging.There was a Sarah J. Donaldson in the 1910 census living in Ionia, Mich., The only Donaldson to come up for that area at that time. She was a widow aged 65 and lived on her own. She had 2 children but they're not living in the state. The name Donaldson also came up on the marriage record for Adelaide's (Alice) son Clarence William Louch when he married a Frances Gould in Montana in 1916...(The record names Alice Adelaide Louch and Charles as his parents). The marriage was officiated by Pastor Charles M Donaldson, and his wife Mabel J Donaldson as a witness. I haven't been able to connect Charles with Sarah J in Michigan though (as yet) so maybe a coincidence..? Clarence and Frances then moved out to California, I guess to live near his Uncle William, who was also a Minister. (I can link sources if you have worldwide access to Ancestry).

The problem I'm having is with Miss Lloyd. She's not appearing on the Titanic or on the Carpathia. And she's also not appearing on the Celtic. A. Louch seems to be travelling on her own on the Celtic.

It does seem strange that she wrote on a postcard of Cunard ships when she was sailing on a White Star line ship. What she's saying on the postcard doesn't really make any sense. Also, like Arun said above, the address is not complete so I don't see how she could have received it. It does make me wonder where the postcard came from when it was put up for auction. Was that a UK auction or US?

If you can think of anything else I can look into, I'd be happy to do so. Like I said in another recent thread on here, I love a mystery..:) I will keep looking.
 
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Arun Vajpey

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There was a Sarah J. Donaldson in the 1910 census living in Ionia, Mich., The only Donaldson to come up for that area at that time. She was a widow aged 65 and lived on her own. She had 2 children but they're not living in the state. The name Donaldson also came up on the marriage record for Adelaide's (Alice) son Clarence William Louch when he married a Frances Gould in Montana in 1916...(The record names Alice Adelaide Louch and Charles as his parents). The marriage was officiated by Pastor Charles M Donaldson, and his wife Mabel J Donaldson as a witness. I haven't been able to connect Charles with Sarah J in Michigan though (as yet) so maybe a coincidence..? Clarence and Frances then moved out to California, I guess to live near his Uncle William, who was also a Minister
This is a very interesting bit of information considering the query by the OP. Consider the known facts and build-up a speculative chain of events.
  • Alice 'Adelaide' Louch was travelling with husband Charles on board the Titanic. They were on the way to spend time with Charles' brother William Louch, a Minister in California.
  • When the Titanic struck the iceberg and sank, Charles died but Alice (Adelaide?) survived. She reached New York on board the Carpathia but as far as is known, did not go to California but returned to the UK on board the White Star Liner Celtic less than a week later. William Clarke would have heard about the disaster while waiting for his relatives in California. Could he have travelled to New York to meet his widowed sister in law whole she was still arriving on board the Carpathia?
  • I find this Mrs Sarah Donaldson of Ionia, Michigan, very interesting. If she was there in 1910, presumably she was still living there in 1912 at the time of the Titanic disaster. If she had 2 children not living in Michigan at the time, could one of them possibly have been Pastor Charles Donaldson of Montana? If so, he might have known, William Louch, a fellow Man of the Cloth; that might mean that Alice Adelaide Louch was at least familiar with the Donaldson family.
  • Obviously, Alice Adelaide Louch (she might have liked to be addressed by her middle name; many people do) would have been shell-shocked and grieving from her experience when she arrived in New York. Is there the possibility that someone from (or close to) the Donaldson family arrived there to meet her?
  • In the state of mind she would have been, it is possible that Adelaide wrote that letter on the first post card that she could get hold of, which might easily have been on board the Carpathia, a Cunard liner.
If it had not been for the postmark on that card shown, I would have thought that Adelaide did not actually post the letter to (Sarah) Donaldson but handed it to someone who came to meet her in New York and then was going to Ionia. But since there is a clear stamp and postmark with practically no address, I wonder if the card ever reached Mrs Donaldson. As the procedure existed in the US in 1912, what would happen to an inadequately addressed postcard dropped into a mailbox? Presumably, it might have been marked at the sorting office but ended up in a Dead Letter Office or equivalent. Whoever put that card up for auction might not necessarily have received it from Mrs Donaldson's descendants.

Of course, there is the possibility that the card reached the local Post Office in Ionia, Michigan; the local postal staff of the small town could easily have known the address of the 67 year old lady if she was the only Donaldson in town and so delivered it.
 
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Jane55

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This is a very interesting bit of information considering the query by the OP. Consider the known facts and build-up a speculative chain of events.
  • Alice 'Adelaide' Louch was travelling with husband Charles on board the Titanic. They were on the way to spend time with Charles' brother William Louch, a Minister in California.
  • When the Titanic struck the iceberg and sank, Charles died but Alice (Adelaide?) survived. She reached New York on board the Carpathia but as far as is known, did not go to California but returned to the UK on board the White Star Liner Celtic less than a week later. William Clarke would have heard about the disaster while waiting for his relatives in California. Could he have travelled to New York to meet his widowed sister in law whole she was still arriving on board the Carpathia?
  • I find this Mrs Sarah Donaldson of Ionia, Michigan, very interesting. If she was there in 1910, presumably she was still living there in 1912 at the time of the Titanic disaster. If she had 2 children not living in Michigan at the time, could one of them possibly have been Pastor Charles Donaldson of Montana? If so, he might have known, William Louch, a fellow Man of the Cloth; that might mean that Alice Adelaide Louch was at least familiar with the Donaldson family.
  • Obviously, Alice Adelaide Louch (she might have liked to be addressed by her middle name; many people do) would have been shell-shocked and grieving from her experience when she arrived in New York. Is there the possibility that someone from (or close to) the Donaldson family arrived there to meet her?
  • In the state of mind she would have been, it is possible that Adelaide wrote that letter on the first post card that she could get hold of, which might easily have been on board the Carpathia, a Cunard liner.
If it had not been for the postmark on that card shown, I would have thought that Adelaide did not actually post the letter to (Sarah) Donaldson but handed it to someone who came to meet her in New York and then was going to Ionia. But since there is a clear stamp and postmark with practically no address, I wonder if the card ever reached Mrs Donaldson. As the procedure existed in the US in 1912, what would happen to an inadequately addressed postcard dropped into a mailbox? Presumably, it might have been marked at the sorting office but ended up in a Dead Letter Office or equivalent. Whoever put that card up for auction might not necessarily have received it from Mrs Donaldson's descendants.

Of course, there is the possibility that the card reached the local Post Office in Ionia, Michigan; the local postal staff of the small town could easily have known the address of the 67 year old lady if she was the only Donaldson in town and so delivered it.
Thanks for your thoughts Arun. There are a lot of possibilities. What I'd like to do is look and see if I can find the maiden names of Sara Donaldson and Adelaide Louch. They may be related somehow. I'm also going to keep looking for a connection between Sarah and Pastor Charles and find out who Miss Lloyd was..(if I can). I may be gone some time. :)
 
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Arun Vajpey

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What I'd like to do is look and see if I can find the maiden names of Sara Donaldson and Adelaide Louch. They may be related somehow. I'm also going to keep looking for a connection between Sarah and Pastor Charles
Thanks Jane. Like the OP, I'll look forward to an update on this. I'll do a spot of checking myself and will post here if I come up with something. I have found in the past that in US small towns, the local Chamber of Commerce is a good place to start one's queries.

I have a feeling that Pastor Charles J Donaldson might have been Sarah Donaldson's son. If that indeed was the case and Sarah was 65 in 1910, her son Charles would presumably have been in his late 30s or even very early 40s at the time. That would fit in nicely with his officiating Clarence Louch's wedding 6 years later. Do you know
which town in Montana that wedding took place? That would help to search simultaneously in 2 places.
 
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Sean T.

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Hi Sean, I've been doing a bit of digging.There was a Sarah J. Donaldson in the 1910 census living in Ionia, Mich., The only Donaldson to come up for that area at that time. She was a widow aged 65 and lived on her own. She had 2 children but they're not living in the state. The name Donaldson also came up on the marriage record for Adelaide's (Alice) son Clarence William Louch when he married a Frances Gould in Montana in 1916...(The record names Alice Adelaide Louch and Charles as his parents). The marriage was officiated by Pastor Charles M Donaldson, and his wife Mabel J Donaldson as a witness. I haven't been able to connect Charles with Sarah J in Michigan though (as yet) so maybe a coincidence..? Clarence and Frances then moved out to California, I guess to live near his Uncle William, who was also a Minister. (I can link sources if you have worldwide access to Ancestry).

The problem I'm having is with Miss Lloyd. She's not appearing on the Titanic or on the Carpathia. And she's also not appearing on the Celtic. A. Louch seems to be travelling on her own on the Celtic.

It does seem strange that she wrote on a postcard of Cunard ships when she was sailing on a White Star line ship. What she's saying on the postcard doesn't really make any sense. Also, like Arun said above, the address is not complete so I don't see how she could have received it. It does make me wonder where the postcard came from when it was put up for auction. Was that a UK auction or US?

If you can think of anything else I can look into, I'd be happy to do so. Like I said in another recent thread on here, I love a mystery..:) I will keep looking.
I'd like to say first and foremost that I very much appreciate all of your responses and could not be more excited at the interest generated by the original post.

It is rather unfortunate that the address is so incomplete on the card which makes tracing the intended destination of the card much more difficult. Seems this card should have been given an "Address your mail to Street and Number" postmark.

As per the question regarding the location of the auction where this card came from. It was an American auction with the sender being from Waterloo, New York. Though not exactly a midpoint it does lie in between Ionia, MI and the location of the former Hudson Terminal Station in New York City.

I must thank those that have replied as you have shared some incredible insight into the real history behind Mrs. Louch and potential history to this card. For example, the name of the pastor who married Mr. and Mrs. Louch being a Donaldson and potentially fitting into the timeline of being the son of Mrs. Sarah Donaldson of Ionia was a very interesting read. Regardless of whether this turns out to be a piece of Titanic-history or a wild sequence of coincidences, I must give my thanks to those of you who have replied. I will try to be more timely in my responses from this point on.

All the best, and absolute best of luck of to those of you going deeper in the search.
 
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Arun Vajpey

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Thanks Sean. I have already e-mailed the County Clerk and Chamber of Commerce in Ionia, Michigan, asking for information on Mrs Sarah Donaldson and her family. Even if she was born outside the US herself (most likely the UK), the chances are that her children were born there. I have asked if they have a record of a son named Charles.

Of course it is possible that even if Pastor Charles Donaldson was Sarah's son, he was born elsewhere. But a research like this is usually painstaking and takes a while; we have to be ready for leads that take us nowhere and other disappointments. But persistence often yields tangible results as I discovered with my past research about Titanic survivor scullion John Collins that spread over some 15 years. I love this kind of thing.

I have also e-mailed an organization called Church USA asking if they can find information about a Pastor Charles Donaldson in Montana around 1916. They might not have the information in their own files, but as they seem to have a database about ALL branches of Christian faith is the US from late 19th century, I am hoping that they'll push me in the right direction. Although Montana is a very large state by area, it has just over a million people even today; in 1916 it would have been quite thinly populated and so there could not have been too many Pastor Charles Donaldsons.

As for that Cunard postcard, I don't think that it is a big mystery. My guess is that Alice 'Adelaide' Louch picked it up on board the Carpathia on her way to New York after the disaster. She would have been exhausted, depressed and grieving and it is possible that she lost Sarah Donaldson's address along with other possessions when the Titanic went down. With the chaos that followed the survivors' arrival, Adelaide probably did not find time to pen that card till just before her return to England on board the Celtic a week later. Without recalling the full address, she probably chance-mailed it with just the addressee and town names. That way, it would have reached Ionia, Michigan, then a small town of fewer than 5000 people. The local Post Office staff probably knew the 67 year old widow living alone and delivered it to her.

Like Jane says, this "Miss Lloyd" that Adelaide alludes to in the card is a real mystery. The only two Lloyds on board the Titanic were both men, a saloon steward named Humphrey Lloyd and a fireman named William Lloyd; no women. Both crewmen were lost in the sinking but Humphrey Lloyd's body was recovered by the Mackay-Bennett but buried at sea. I do not believe that Miss Lloyd had any connection with either of those deceased crewmen; in all probability she was a mutual acquaintance of the Louches and Donaldsons who had nothing to do with the Titanic per se but planned to sail to England on board the Celtic. If Jane55 is certain that there was no Miss Lloyd on board the Celtic on that trip, she must have changed her plans in the last minute.
 

Arun Vajpey

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The problem I'm having is with Miss Lloyd. She's not appearing on the Titanic or on the Carpathia. And she's also not appearing on the Celtic. A. Louch seems to be travelling on her own on the Celtic.
Jane, can you please help me to find the appropriate link for the passenger and crew list of the Celtic for the trip that left New York on 25th April 1912? I seem to be having trouble finding it. Thanks.

Also, is there the possibility that this "Miss Lloyd" was a crew member - a stewardess for example - on board the Celtic? If so, that would explain why her name would not appear on the passenger list.
 

Arun Vajpey

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I just found an old excerpt from the Idaho Free Press dated 8th February 1968 regarding the obituary of a Dr Charles M Donaldson, a Methodist Pastor. Below is the link.


It seems quite clear that this is the same Pastor Charles M Donaldson who officiated in the wedding of Clarence Louch and Frances Gould in Montana over 50 years earlier. Like Jane55's post says, Pastor Charles M Donaldson was married to Mable J Donaldson (nee King) and spent over 20 years professional life in Montana. In 1916 he was almost certainly stationed at Fort Benton, Montana, which is where he would have officiated the Louch-Gould wedding.

As you can see, the obituary says that the Pastor was originally from Tracy, Minnesota and not Ionia Michigan. His parents were George and Mary Donaldson and so he was NOT the son of Sarah Donaldson of Ionia, Michigan. Charles M Donaldson remained in Minnesota till he graduated in 1905 and for 2 years thereafter before moving to Montana. Therefore, on the surface at least it seems like his officiating at the wedding of Alice 'Adelaide' Louch's son Clarence Louch and the fact that Adelaide had written to a Mrs S Donaldson in Ionia, Michigan nearly 4 years earlier is just a coincidence. Or is it?

There are other related or unrelated facts depending on how one looks at them, Adelaide's husband Charles Louch was a saddle maker by trade but also an active lay Baptist preacher in England. We know that his brother William Louch was a Minister in California at the time (Methodist? Baptist? I am not very good in Christian sub-sects, I'm afraid) and the English couple boarded the Titanic to spend time with him in California.

There WAS a Donaldson family in Ionia at the time and the lady of the house WAS called Sarah Donaldson. But she had died in 1908 aged 53, around 4 years before the Titanic disaster and that postcard was written. Also, she was NOT a widow at the time and her only husband, a farmer named Dewitt Donaldson, was alive and well - he went on to live till 92 years of age.


But for all the above anomalies, Jane55's research has shown that there was a 65 year old widow named Sarah Donaldson living in Ionia in 1910 and this lady was obviously a different person. While this seems to indicate that there was no direct relation between Sarah J Donaldson that Adelaide wrote to and Pastor Charles Donaldson of Minnesota & Montana, there is no evidence to refute it either. The first link shows that Pastor Charles Donaldson was one of 8 children and so they must have been a large family. There must have been a reason why the Englishman Clarence Louch went to an obscure little town in Montana to be married by Charles M Donaldson before his move to California - just as there must have been a reason for his shell-shocked, exhausted and grieving mother to have sent a postcard to Mrs Sarah J Donaldson 4 years earlier in the few days that she was in New York. Even though we now know that Pastor Charles Donaldson of Montana was not the son of Sarah J Donaldson of Ionia, Michigan, they might have been related otherwise. Charles Donaldson was 33 in April 1912 and the then 67 year old Sarah Donaldson might have been an aunt or something.

I have contacted various sources in Ionia and will update as I receive new information.
 
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Jane55

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Hi Arun,


The town in Montana where Pastor Donaldson married Clarence was called Lewistown, in the County of Fergus. This is a link to the Marriage License but it's from Ancestry.com so you may need a paid membership to access it.

Unfortunately, I've made a mistake regarding Sarah Donaldson's children. When I was looking at the 1910 census and saw that she was living on her own, she was living in a boarding house where another family was living and I was looking at their chidren rather than Sarah's. Sarah had 1 child and unfortunately was no longer living in 1910. Bit of a blow but doesn't mean they're not related, just not Mother and Son.
 
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Jane55

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I'd like to say first and foremost that I very much appreciate all of your responses and could not be more excited at the interest generated by the original post.

It is rather unfortunate that the address is so incomplete on the card which makes tracing the intended destination of the card much more difficult. Seems this card should have been given an "Address your mail to Street and Number" postmark.

As per the question regarding the location of the auction where this card came from. It was an American auction with the sender being from Waterloo, New York. Though not exactly a midpoint it does lie in between Ionia, MI and the location of the former Hudson Terminal Station in New York City.

I must thank those that have replied as you have shared some incredible insight into the real history behind Mrs. Louch and potential history to this card. For example, the name of the pastor who married Mr. and Mrs. Louch being a Donaldson and potentially fitting into the timeline of being the son of Mrs. Sarah Donaldson of Ionia was a very interesting read. Regardless of whether this turns out to be a piece of Titanic-history or a wild sequence of coincidences, I must give my thanks to those of you who have replied. I will try to be more timely in my responses from this point on.

All the best, and absolute best of luck of to those of you going deeper in the search.
Hi Sean, Thanks for replying.

I've just replied to another post that, Unfortunately, I've made a mistake regarding Sarah Donsaldson's children. When I was looking at the 1910 census and saw that she was living on her own, she was living in a boarding house where another family was living and I was looking at their chidren rather than Sarah's. Sarah had 1 child and unfortunately was no longer living in 1910. Bit of a blow but doesn't mean they're not related, just not Mother and Son. I still have other ideas and places to look at so I'll have a longer look at it tomorrow evening.
 

Jane55

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Thanks Sean. I have already e-mailed the County Clerk and Chamber of Commerce in Ionia, Michigan, asking for information on Mrs Sarah Donaldson and her family. Even if she was born outside the US herself (most likely the UK), the chances are that her children were born there. I have asked if they have a record of a son named Charles.

Of course it is possible that even if Pastor Charles Donaldson was Sarah's son, he was born elsewhere. But a research like this is usually painstaking and takes a while; we have to be ready for leads that take us nowhere and other disappointments. But persistence often yields tangible results as I discovered with my past research about Titanic survivor scullion John Collins that spread over some 15 years. I love this kind of thing.

I have also e-mailed an organization called Church USA asking if they can find information about a Pastor Charles Donaldson in Montana around 1916. They might not have the information in their own files, but as they seem to have a database about ALL branches of Christian faith is the US from late 19th century, I am hoping that they'll push me in the right direction. Although Montana is a very large state by area, it has just over a million people even today; in 1916 it would have been quite thinly populated and so there could not have been too many Pastor Charles Donaldsons.

As for that Cunard postcard, I don't think that it is a big mystery. My guess is that Alice 'Adelaide' Louch picked it up on board the Carpathia on her way to New York after the disaster. She would have been exhausted, depressed and grieving and it is possible that she lost Sarah Donaldson's address along with other possessions when the Titanic went down. With the chaos that followed the survivors' arrival, Adelaide probably did not find time to pen that card till just before her return to England on board the Celtic a week later. Without recalling the full address, she probably chance-mailed it with just the addressee and town names. That way, it would have reached Ionia, Michigan, then a small town of fewer than 5000 people. The local Post Office staff probably knew the 67 year old widow living alone and delivered it to her.

Like Jane says, this "Miss Lloyd" that Adelaide alludes to in the card is a real mystery. The only two Lloyds on board the Titanic were both men, a saloon steward named Humphrey Lloyd and a fireman named William Lloyd; no women. Both crewmen were lost in the sinking but Humphrey Lloyd's body was recovered by the Mackay-Bennett but buried at sea. I do not believe that Miss Lloyd had any connection with either of those deceased crewmen; in all probability she was a mutual acquaintance of the Louches and Donaldsons who had nothing to do with the Titanic per se but planned to sail to England on board the Celtic. If Jane55 is certain that there was no Miss Lloyd on board the Celtic on that trip, she must have changed her plans in the last minute.
According to the 1910 Census (Ancestry.com, may need a subscription), Sarah was born in New York.
 
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Jane55

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Jane, can you please help me to find the appropriate link for the passenger and crew list of the Celtic for the trip that left New York on 25th April 1912? I seem to be having trouble finding it. Thanks.

Also, is there the possibility that this "Miss Lloyd" was a crew member - a stewardess for example - on board the Celtic? If so, that would explain why her name would not appear on the passenger list.
I've replied to your message but I'll post the Passenger list for Celtic here as well in case anyone else can access it. It's from Ancestry.co.uk. I'm sure I look through the whole thing but I might have missed something. I'll have another look tomorrow evening unless you or anyone else finds anything first.
 

Arun Vajpey

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Thanks Jane. I decided that it was worth registering with Ancestry.com and have done so. I'll look carefully through the Celtic list for that voyage and see if a 'Miss Lloyd' appears anywhere.

The Celtic departed New York on 25th April and arrived at Liverpool on 4th May 1912. 9 days seems very long for a transatlantic voyage but then it was a much slower ship than the Titanic with a max speed of 16 knots.

I have also registered with the Geni site in the USA (free) and have already got a brief about Clarence Louch, Adelaide's son after he moved to California. I have mailed his site manager asking if there is any information about his links with Pastor Donaldson's family.

Pastor Charles Donaldson was quite well known in northern USA at the time. He grew-up and studied in Minnesota and then worked for more than 20 years in Montana before finally moving to Idaho. His obituary link that I posted above gave information about his various memberships and I have e-mailed most of them, asking of there is any evidence of a relative in Ionia, Michigan. If so, it is likely that he was related (a nephew, perhaps?) of your Sarah J Donaldson's husband; since Adelaide's card referred to her as Mrs S J Donaldson, she would have acquired that surname only through marriage.

The second link about Dewitt Donaldson is also interesting. I initially noted that his was a large Donaldson family living in Ionia country at the time and his wife was also a Sarah Donaldson. But she was Sarah Ann Donaldson and had passed away in 1908 whereas Dewitt himself was very much alive and lived till 1937. I initially did not think that his family tree was related to our Sarah J Donaldson but now I am not so sure. Look at the details of Dewitt Donaldson's family in the memorial in that link; by 1880, Dewitt was already considered as the head of the family aged 32 years but there is a 35 year old Henry Donaldson also living in Ionia at the time. I know it is a wild guess, but I wonder if Henry Donaldson could have been Sarah J Donaldson's late (as in 1910) husband? Ionia was a small town those days and if he had been alive in 1910, Henry would also have been 65 years old. I am checking.
 

Arun Vajpey

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65
Sarah was born in New York.
Now, that's useful and interesting. I assumed that Charles and Adelaide Louch knew Sarah J Donaldson's English ancestors and that's the reason they were acquainted. But if Sarah was born in New York herself, that would have been in around 1845 and so the chances of still having old family friends in England in 1912 are small.

That leads to the possibility that the Louches, who were from Somerset in England, became acquainted with the Ionia Donaldsons through Sarah J Donaldson's husband, who might have come from the old country. Adelaide did not use the usual "Dear ****" nomination in the card and so we don't know if she called Sarah Donaldson as "Sarah" or "Mrs Donaldson". But she signed the card as "Adelaide" which to me indicated at least some familiarity with the recipient.

As for the mysterious 'Miss Lloyd' she might have been a passenger on board the Carpathia in the first place (Can this be checked?). After all, the Carpathia was on an Eastbound crossing (albeit not to England) when it turned to assist the survivors of the Titanic. The planned journeys of her own passengers would therefore have been disrupted and if Miss Lloyd was one of them, it makes sense that she took an Eastbound ship a week after her enforced return to New York.
 

Jane55

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Aug 20, 2020
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Thanks Jane. I decided that it was worth registering with Ancestry.com and have done so. I'll look carefully through the Celtic list for that voyage and see if a 'Miss Lloyd' appears anywhere.

The Celtic departed New York on 25th April and arrived at Liverpool on 4th May 1912. 9 days seems very long for a transatlantic voyage but then it was a much slower ship than the Titanic with a max speed of 16 knots.

I have also registered with the Geni site in the USA (free) and have already got a brief about Clarence Louch, Adelaide's son after he moved to California. I have mailed his site manager asking if there is any information about his links with Pastor Donaldson's family.

Pastor Charles Donaldson was quite well known in northern USA at the time. He grew-up and studied in Minnesota and then worked for more than 20 years in Montana before finally moving to Idaho. His obituary link that I posted above gave information about his various memberships and I have e-mailed most of them, asking of there is any evidence of a relative in Ionia, Michigan. If so, it is likely that he was related (a nephew, perhaps?) of your Sarah J Donaldson's husband; since Adelaide's card referred to her as Mrs S J Donaldson, she would have acquired that surname only through marriage.

The second link about Dewitt Donaldson is also interesting. I initially noted that his was a large Donaldson family living in Ionia country at the time and his wife was also a Sarah Donaldson. But she was Sarah Ann Donaldson and had passed away in 1908 whereas Dewitt himself was very much alive and lived till 1937. I initially did not think that his family tree was related to our Sarah J Donaldson but now I am not so sure. Look at the details of Dewitt Donaldson's family in the memorial in that link; by 1880, Dewitt was already considered as the head of the family aged 32 years but there is a 35 year old Henry Donaldson also living in Ionia at the time. I know it is a wild guess, but I wonder if Henry Donaldson could have been Sarah J Donaldson's late (as in 1910) husband? Ionia was a small town those days and if he had been alive in 1910, Henry would also have been 65 years old. I am checking.
I thought 9 days was a bit long as well but then I think the ship stopped at Queenstown as well, and as you say the ship is a bit slower than the Titanic so I think it's plausible. Well done on joining Ancestry. I've been a member for about 20 years or so and do my own family research.
 

Jane55

Member
Aug 20, 2020
24
25
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Now, that's useful and interesting. I assumed that Charles and Adelaide Louch knew Sarah J Donaldson's English ancestors and that's the reason they were acquainted. But if Sarah was born in New York herself, that would have been in around 1845 and so the chances of still having old family friends in England in 1912 are small.

That leads to the possibility that the Louches, who were from Somerset in England, became acquainted with the Ionia Donaldsons through Sarah J Donaldson's husband, who might have come from the old country. Adelaide did not use the usual "Dear ****" nomination in the card and so we don't know if she called Sarah Donaldson as "Sarah" or "Mrs Donaldson". But she signed the card as "Adelaide" which to me indicated at least some familiarity with the recipient.

As for the mysterious 'Miss Lloyd' she might have been a passenger on board the Carpathia in the first place (Can this be checked?). After all, the Carpathia was on an Eastbound crossing (albeit not to England) when it turned to assist the survivors of the Titanic. The planned journeys of her own passengers would therefore have been disrupted and if Miss Lloyd was one of them, it makes sense that she took an Eastbound ship a week after her enforced return to New York.
This is according to the Census. Her Mother was born in New York as well, and her Father in Massachusettes. So far I haven't been able to find them on other census years to clarify that because I don't know their names. I'll work on that another time if we don't find anything else sooner. I'll also have a look and see if I can find a passenger list for the Carpathia on the original voyage. I'm doing something else at the moment so will get to that later.
 
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Jane55

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Well, I've spent so long working on The Donaldsons in the US and not really getting very far so I'm taking a rest from them and going back to the Louches in the UK. Something interesting I've come across. Frances Gould's (Clarence's wife) Father, is also Clarence's Uncle. So Clarence and Frances are cousins. (Found Clarence on a passenger list for the Lusitania and person he named he was staying with was his Uncle Joe Gould. Frances's Father is Joseph Gould. She arrived 5 months later). She came over travelling with her brother Benjamin and his wife. Benjamin is also a Minister, which makes me wonder why they went to Montana to get married and not get her brother to marry them.

Looking at someone elses family tree at the moment that includes the Louches and they have Donaldsons on it (UK). So fingers crossed something will turn up there.
 
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