By dint of hard work and some very good luck, Alan Ruffman, author of TITANIC Remembered: The Unsinkable Ship and Halifax, and numerous other TITANIC-related articles, has turned up what he calls the handwritten 'Undated recollections of Mrs. Henry Reginald Dunbar Lacon (nee Hilda Mary Slayter; April 5, 1882-April 12, 1965), written "in old age" circa the late 1950s, of early periods in her life in Halifax, Nova Scotia and in Paris, Prance, circa 1888-1901, in South sea, near Portsmouth, England, circa 1902-1904, onboard and surviving the TITANIC loss in 1912, and during the December 6, 1917 Explosion in Halifax Harbour, as recorded in pencil in her own hand in a 10" 'plain' unruled scribbler published by 'Gage'.' which cover several parts of her life and incidents such as the 1917 Explosion in Halifax Harbour, and her survival of the TITANIC. Wendy Findley and Alan Ruffman have now made a laborious exact transcript which will be considered for possible publication. Laborious because the whole text is written in pencil on a very poor grade of off-white paper in a scribbler, and the hand is at times difficult to decipher. Garry Shutlak at the Public Archives of Nova Scotia has now proofed the transcript, and the next stage is to integrate and to check Garry's comments.
While there is much in this volume of recollections, recent speculation as to in what lifeboat she escaped TITANIC can be put to rest. Her account makes it clear that Hilda Slayter was in the same lifeboat as Lawrence Beesley. Her account parallels his in many aspects. hence if Beesley was in No.13. so was Hilda Mary Slayter. It is also clear that Fanny Lydia Kelly was boosted up on the outside ladder by Hilda to reach the boats some time before Hilda herself followed: so that it is rather likely that Fanny, Hilda's second class cabinmate, went off TITANIC in an earlier lifeboat rather than in Lifeboat No.13.