Titanic's Babies

  • Thread starter bethany kay simmons
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bethany kay simmons

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So I have this question what about the babies? Were there cribs available? What did the babies and toddlers eat? If they didn't have a nanny did they stay with their mother or what?
How many babies were there?
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Bethany, I don't know much about babies (even though I used to be one) but since nodody else has answered your question I'll have a go. There were, I believe, 7 infants aged under 1 year, the youngest being Millvina Dean (2 months). Two died, both from 3rd Class: Gilbert Danbon, who was lost with both parents, and Alfred Peacock, who died with his mother and 3-year old sister.

The Titanic had no nursery or creche, and no specialised staff to help look after children, though the 3rd Class matron Mrs Wallis was expected to keep a lookout for problems which might require attention from the medical staff. I've never seen any reference to cribs, but I'd imagine that (especially in 3rd class) the babies slept in whatever device they were carried in. For those mothers who didn't feed as nature intended, the Titanic was well supplied with 1500 gallons of fresh milk. I don't think specialised baby foods were available in 1912, but I daresay the kitchen staff could improvise as needed.

When White Star vessels were fully booked, older children in 1st Class were expected to eat at an earlier sitting than their parents. I'm not sure how things worked in 2nd and 3rd. But I've never seen any specialised menus for children.

I'd like to join Bethany in asking for more information if anybody has it.
 
Apr 11, 2001
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Frank Philly Aks was aboard of course. He used to like to tell how he was 13 pounds at birth and all photos show him to be a very big baby indeed for his age. I have noticed on many liner menus, the presence of farina, oatmeal, applesauce, semolina, and other farinaceous cereal foods which would be ideal for infant food aboard. The food mill was a device often used to puree vegetables and fruits for invalids and no doubt was utilized for infants as well. I have a 1910 ad for glass nursing bottles with india rubber nipples (very funny-looking) so bottle feeding was an option. I was a Carnation Evaporated milk with Karo corn syrup baby back in the early 50's! I expect the old tried and true method was used to keep babies in bunks- I see the bottom bunk in 3rd class was very low, ideal for small children- and with a chair propped to the side as a makeshift rail, and propped pillows, an improvised crib can be created. My mother did many such impromptu sleeping arrangements. Fascinating subject this.
 
Dec 6, 2000
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Hi Bethany,

I am late seeing your question. My list names a total of 10 infants [that is those aged under 1 year]: - 2 lost; 8 saved:

1st Class: Trevor Allison [saved]
2nd Class: Alden Caldwell; Wiljo Hamalainen; George Richards and Barbara West [saved]
3rd Class: Gilbert Danbom and Alfred Peacock [lost]; and
Frank Aks; Helene Baclini; Vera Dean and Assad Thomas [saved]

Hope that helps,
Lester
 

Brian Ahern

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Dec 19, 2002
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I hope nobody minds if I broaden the topic to include children in general, but I wonder how acceptable it would have been for first class children to be in/around the dining facilities.

In second and third class, parents obviously didn't have a choice in the matter but I wonder if children in first were expected to be kept out of the way. The Allison children could have eaten in their stateroom with Alice Cleaver, but would little Washington Dodge, who had no nanny aboard, have been heading for the dining saloon with his parents?

Any ideas, anyone?
-Brian A.
 

Brian Ahern

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Dec 19, 2002
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I suppose I should mention here that I did catch Bob's mention of first class children being allowed to dine with their parents if things weren't fully booked.

But even if it was technically allowed, would it have been done or would it have been considered rude?

Any thoughts on the subject would be appreciated.
Thanks,
Brian
 
Dec 6, 2000
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Brian,

The wording in a 1st Class Rates booklet that I have says:
Children: - Meals for children are served in the Saloon at special hours, before the other passengers. Children are not entitled to seats at the regular sittings in the Saloon, unless a full fare is paid.

Hope that helps,
Lester
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Hi, Lester. I was referring to the 1910 edition of 'Notes for First Class Passengers', which states "When the steamers are not full in the First Class, children will be allowed to sit with their parents in the Saloon for meals".

Bob
 

Brian Ahern

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Dec 19, 2002
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Thank you Lester.

That's the great thing about this board. There are a ton of little things I've been wondering about for years, but I just post the question and somebody here always knows the answer!

All the best,
Brian Ahern
 
Dec 6, 2000
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Hi Bob,

The booklets I have are later. 1912 and 1913. Both have a General Information for 1st Class Passengers section. What I quoted before came from the main section; but in the General section the under Seats/Seats at Table the wording I have is: Children are not entitled to seats in the Saloon unless a full fare is paid.

A 1912 Cunard booklet says: Children under ten years of age are not entitled to Seats in the Saloon when booked at half fare.

Seems the policy changed after 1910.

Lester
 
M

Magnus Karlsson

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Does anyone know of any problems for the doctors in staff (O'Loughlin and Simpson) before the fatal accident?
 
M

Magnus Karlsson

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Bob, thanks a lot! What a marvellous source of
information on that topic!
I have just made a brief look - it's looks great.
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Magnus, I forgot to welcome you to Titanica - always good to 'meet' a new member. I note that you are a physician - your professional expertise will be very useful to many of the discussions here at ET.
 

Kate Bortner

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May 17, 2001
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Magnus. . . such a great name!!!! We'll be expecting "great" things from you! (that was a joke. A lame joke, mind you, but a joke) :)
-kate. (oh, by the way, welcome!!)
 

Dave Gittins

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Apr 11, 2001
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Magnus, the doctors did have a few patients to attend to. One was Imanita Shelley, a second class passenger. Dr Simpson diagnose tonsillitis and ordered her to rest in her cabin. (Affidavit to US inquiry).

Somebody mentions a boy with a broken arm from third class. Rene Harris broke her arm also. It's not clear if Titanic's doctors attended these people.

So the doctors had some work to do. There were no designated nurses on board but some of the stewardesses may have been trained nurses. Evelyn Marsden is said to have been a nurse.
 
Dec 7, 2000
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When Mrs. Harris broke her arm she insisted that Dr. Frauenthal examine her arm, and then she was off to the ship's doctor to get it into a cast. O'Loughlin also attended to Mr. Harper who was sick in his cabin. Hugo Ross was carried onto the ship on stretches and was in his cabin the entire voyage. There were a few sea sick people. Miss Frolicher enjoyed all of one day on Titanic before she was confined to her bed due to sea sickness. Mrs. Baxter was also sick. I don't know if these latter three people were attended to by the doctor or not.

Daniel.
 

Inger Sheil

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Dec 3, 2000
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I find it interesting that Mrs. Harris also had Dr. Frauenthal accompany her to have the arm x-rayed and seen to once they arrived in NY - is there much material extant on their connection?