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I'm 80 yrs old, born in New York City, have lived in California for many years. My mother and father, both immigrants, were married in New York prior to the 1st world war. My father told her about his brother William Henry Gillespie who had booked on another ship but changed his ticket for the Titanic's maiden voyage. He was 34, 2nd class passenger, law clerk from Abbey, leix, Ireland. His body was never recovered. My parents separated when I was 2 mos.old and I know very little about my father's family. I came across a "Vera R Gillespie" recently in the editor's acknowledgments for ET. I would appreciate any info re my uncle and/or his family. Email adds: [email protected]
 
Aug 29, 2002
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In regard to my uncle William Henry Gillespie who went down with the Titanic, perhaps Hans Soldner would have knowledge of the whereabouts of VERA R GILLESPIE who was a contributor to ET. I am wondering if she is a family member. I am searching for info about my uncle's family in Ireland and/or America. I understand he was my father's favorite brother. I never knew my father or much about the family. Please help!!
 
Mar 28, 2002
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Afternoon Carolyn,

Go to "Titanic Books" on the topics page and scroll down to "Who Sailed On The Titanic". Debbie Beavis, the author of this book, is conducting further research into the passenger you mention, and she may have further information for you.

Cheers,

Boz
 
Sep 6, 2002
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Dear Carolyn,

I am sorry that I am unable to give you any information re William Henry Gillespie. No one in our family was a passenger on the Titanic
and have no connection with your Gillespie family.

Vera R. Gillespie
 
Aug 29, 2002
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Thanks Boz for your referral to Debbie Beavis" book. Heard from Mike re Vera and John Gillespie. No connection to my uncle William Gillespie. I'm hoping to hear from Debbie. It appears she may have found important info perhaps about the family in Ireland. This message board is terrific! Cheers, Carolyn
 
Aug 29, 2002
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Mike,- just received documents from Senan Molony which show that the Irish police in 1926 conducted a special investigation re my uncle William Henry Gillespie, This new info establishes that Uncle Will was indeed a passenger on board the Titanic. His body was never recovered. I appreciate the help of ET, esp. Senan Molony who wrote a very enlightening book called "Irish Aboard the Titanic". ButI'm still hoping to find a photo of my uncle somewhere. Yours was, I believe, the first message received last year when I first logged on. So I wanted you to know what I've recently learned. You had mentioned other links in the Sacramento area but I haven't been able to find them so far. Carolyn
 
Aug 29, 2002
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It has come to my attention that Senan Molony recently posted 4 letters to ET from the Irish Archives re Gillespie. In 1926 the Irish police conducted an extensive investigation after receiving an inquiry about his whereabouts. The police report clearly concluded that Uncle Will was aboard the Titanic and did not survive the shipwreck. I have read old accounts in area newspapers like the San Francisco Examiner which confirmed the deaths of local people on Titanic although bodies were never recovered or identified. I'm grateful for Senan's excellent research and for the help of other ET members. The matter of Uncle Will's demise has finally been resolved. All the best, Carolyn
 

Senan Molony

Member
Jun 28, 1998
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Final proof that William Henry Gillespie died on the Titanic:

96241.jpg


It is a panel on the tombstone of Richard and Eliza Gillespie in Abbeyleix, Church of Ireland graveyard, Co Laois, Ireland.

It says:

William Henry (Gillespie)
Who was lost at sea
in Titanic disaster
15th April 1912
Aged 32 years.
 
Apr 27, 2003
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Senan - Many thanks for the information on Mr. Gillespie's memorial - I have now added it to my book Titanic Memorials World-wide - Where They are Located (unashamed plug) it is the 1,067th reported memorial and the 977th person to have a memorial or be mentioned on a memorial.
Anyone know of any more?
Regards - Brian
 
Mar 28, 2002
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Brian,

I owe you a memorial to bandsman John Wesley Woodward, as promised many months ago. He has a headstone or dedication to him in West Bromwich, West Midlands. If I plan my time better, I will hopefully have something for you soon and also for the other four West Bromwich men who died in the disaster.

Cheers,

Boz
 
Aug 29, 2002
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Senan,

Truly appreciate seeing this memorial to William Henry Gillespie on the tombstone of my grandparents in Church of Ireland graveyard at Abbeyleix,Ireland. Recently, learned from a Sadie Bennett in Abbeyleix, who is related by marriage to the Wilde family, that "Jim Wilde was married to a Gillespie whose brother was lost at sea in the sinking of Titanic." This, of course, is the same James Wilde mentioned in the 1926 letter from the Irish police that you found in the archives, verifying my uncle's death on Titanic. Again, thanks for your help.

Best regards,

Carolyn
 

kevin loveday

Member
Nov 12, 2019
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hello I believe William to have been my great great grandfather I have done a lot of research over the years and i am currently trying to do my family tree i know that he was related on my nans side who I believe her mum to be a gladys Gillespie so I am trying to fill in the gap of anyone could help that would be good
thanks
kev
England United kingdom
 

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