Ben Thomas Sebastian Holme

Hi Rolf,

I haven't read anything that suggests the relationships within the Thayer family were anything other than stable.
I will quote you a passage from Michael Davie's book that outlines the circumstances for their seperation at boat #4.

"...Mr Wild, the chief officer, told us to go down onto A-deck and get into a boat they were loading from there. Father and mother went ahead -
your son (Milton Long) and I followed. A crowd pushed ahead of us and we could not find my mother or father when we were able to pass on, so thinking they had managed to get off in a boat we went to the starboard side of the boat deck".

(From Jack Thayer's account)

I'd imagine that Harry Widener remained with his father until the end. Col. Gracie vaguely remembered him standing by his father and John Thayer. Those three eventually deicided to head for the stern...probably.

Hope this helps


Rolf Vonk

Hi Ben,

Thanks for your information! It's good to know that the Thayers lost each other in a crowd. Though strange that they didn't find each other back before the ship went down. They had an hour to look for eachother and they only stayed on the first class decks. It seems logically that Harry Widener stayed with George. I know that Gracie saw Widener and Thayer together with other first class passengers, but I'm not sure if Gracie saw Harry Widener among them. I've hear about the story that Harry Widener went back to his cabin to get some rare books, but that story proved to be false.


Sue Haynes

I stumbled on this page today by accident and couldn't believe the information I picked up about my husband's distant relative (William Thomas Stead) and my great uncle & aunt (Percy & Florance Thorneycroft). Thank you so much to all the contributors who have made my day.

Thomas Wesphaguson

Having received the book "Wreck and Sinking of the TITANIC: The Ocean's Greatest
Disaster, copyright, 1912, which provides first-hand accounts of the survivors, condolences exchanged by King George of England and President Taft, as well as alist of the passengers missing from the Titanic, revised from last reports from the Carpathia--only 914 actual names out of the total 1635 lost.
My question: What does one do with such a historic document, which is too, a first (if not only edition)?
Pictures include that of Major Archibald Butt, aid to President Taft--one of the heroic dead, stepping aside such that others might be saved.
Too pictured were Mr. and Mrs. William T. Stead, great educator and editor, both of whom went down with the Titanic.
And I must too indicate photos of collapsible lifeboats, just before being picked up the the Carpathia--women at the oars.
And then there was this cute phpto of two kids orphaned by the wreck--two little French children who were found in the care of Miss Hayes, a survivor. Their father went down with the Titanic.
Excellent photos, including the launching of the S.S. Titanic.
A honeymoon couple, Mr. and Ms. George A. Harder, rescued from the wreck is photographed with Mrs. Chas. M. Hays, whose husband, president of the Grand Trunk Railway, was lost.


Jan 20, 1998
It was fascinating to read about William Stead. My father and grandfather carried the same name - William Stead. In a letter I received from my great aunt a couple weeks ago she said that one of our relatives died on the Titanic. How fun to read about my family history on your web site. Sincerely, Paula Stead

Harald Bürling

Name plaese the important book about the view bejond the Horizon:
by Estelle Stead
HarperCollins Publisher?
Daughter of Sir William Thomas Stead
The most mysterious man on board the TITANIC!
It's a world bestseller since than!

Dave Gittins

Mar 16, 2000
Harald, there's nothing very mysterious about William Stead. (Not Sir William).

He was a very inventive journalist, who did much to create more interesting and attractive newspapers and magazines. He was a campaigner against real social evils and achieved needed reforms.

As he got older, he became increasingly eccentric and began to dabble in spiritualism. He claimed to be able to write under the control of the dead or living.

After his death, his daughter published the book you mention. The whole book and its background can be found at http://www.attackingthedevil.co.uk/blueisland.htm for those who have the patience to wade through it.

Paul Thomas

Re: William Thomas Stead in 1909
The South Hayling URC on Hayling Island has an original Post card of this photo with a message written and signed by W T Stead on the back - "In Constantinople, with Christmas wishes, W T Stead"

Harald Buerling

Re: William Thomas Stead, a portrait

I urge you to mention the book of his daughter Estelle Stead "The blue Island", written down the expirience "beyond the horizon" the other world by W.T.Stead!
She was his writing medium after his death!

Would you be so kind to take this world bestseller on your list!

This book is very impotant for dying people!

I'm looking for the "Biography of W.T.Stead" which was once placed here!

I don't find it! Can you help me?

kelly robertson

Re: William Thomas Stead
my name is kelly robertson (nee haynes) my nans dad harry stead was william steads brother!
Feb 4, 2006
Friday, 21st of July 2006

Regarding Mr William-Thomas Stead passenger of 1st class lost with Titanic.
Famous journalist involved also in spiritual studies.
A great personality.
I have a small book written in 1922, in Greece.
In this book is referring to Mr Stead when he, after his death, appeared as a spirit to his beloved daughter, in 1914, explaining to here how he experienced the very first moments after his death. Also speaking, about the kind of life he had afterwards in the:
"BLUE LAKE" this is also the title of the book.
People knowing enough about the person will understand what I mean as Mr, Stead had a big interest during his life and carrier for spiritual studies
So for years now, i had a special attachment with this man described in the small book I had read. And in 2006 happened that the exhibition of Titanic came to Greece and I had the opportunity to visit it. I searched and found "My Mr Stead" in the list between the passengers of the first class. Through the Encyclopaedia Titanica I learned a lot more about him, and fell now mach closer to his personality.
It is sure that during the several contacts he had after his death with his beloved daughter, he might have had described his last moments on the Titanic.
Unfortunately this small book I have in my library as from 1922 contains only fragments of his experience after the death. So what I am looking fore is any information regarding family members still existing or publications on this respect ,Any information will be appreciated..

Susan Walker Murdoch

Re: Portrait of William Thomas Stead
I am the grandaughter of Agnes Clara Langman who worked for Mr Stead and he signed her Guild papers to go to Canada in the year 1909. She worked as a parlour maid for Mrs Stead probably in London but the address on the papers were Holly Bush South something it is hard to read. But one of the addresses given on Stead's bio is Holly Bush.
My Grandma went over to Canada and returned to England to work and then brough her brother over and remained in Canada. She was born in Dec 28,1884 and we have very little info just pictures and a few names. She talked a lot about her life and family in England but not much about her famous employer. She always said she born under the Bow Bells a real cockney.
Mar 20, 2007


A new biography of William T. Stead has recently been published and is available to buy from Amazon. I've attached a couple of links above.

As I've written previously on the board, it is quite astonishing that Stead has not been scrutinised and discussed more extensively on E.T. Arguably, he was the ship's most famous passenger (for reasons of achievement, as opposed to mere wealth) and he was, in his day, one of the most influential journalists and social commentators in the world.

Kevin Saucier

I just added an original cabinet photo of Stead to my collection. It may be a newly discovered pose or picture...at least I can't seem to find it anywhere. Nonetheless, it's a beauty!

ET and/or TIS are welcome to use copies of it if they wish.


Kevin Saucier
Jun 10, 1999
Kevin: Thanks for the image of Stead. It may be an image I will mount with a signed letter on "Review of Reviews" I have of his. In time the letter will be published in the TIS journal on behalf of my correspondence with Michael Porier.

Michael Cundiff


Oct 12, 2011
I am positively the last living relative of W.T.Stead. My late father ( South African ) was the son of his brother-who resided in Red House,Port Elizabeth,South Africa.  I have followed his ( W.T.Stead ) history closely for many years,as has my eldest son (Mark Stead ) now living in Paris.The sinking /and history of the "Titanc " has therefore fasinated me for years. Please keep the history flowing. Theo Stead St.Francis Bay 6312 South africa

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