Hell-raising the Titanic

Murder, bigamy, assault, spying, slavery, child abduction, reckless driving, sedition... just a few of the activities that some of the Titanic passengers and crew indulged in.


William Thomas Abrams
In 1911 was recorded inmate at HM Prison, Romsey Road, Winchester.  His crime is unknown.

Henry Allen
In 1911 he was listed as a prisoner at HM Prison on Romsey Road, Winchester. His crime is unknown.

Leontine Aubart
Madame Aubart held parties during the twenties that were ended by police and she herself may have been arrested on several occasions.  Details remain sketchy.

Henry Joseph Bailey
In February 1886, while an able seaman aboard HMS Canada in the West Indies, Bailey was sentenced to 42 days’ hard labour for ‘Prevarication'. On New Year’s Day, 1892, Bailey spent a few hours in the cells at Portsmouth for the offence of ‘breaking leave.’

Solomon Bowenur
On the 1900 census he was a prisoner in the Suffolk County House of Correction in Boston but the nature of his crime is unknown.

Elsie Edith Bowerman and her mother Mrs Alfred Benjamin Chibnall
Both were active members of the W.S.P.U the militant suffragette movement. Involved in numerous act of protest and sabotage.  Mrs Chibnall was assaulted and injured by a policeman during a riot in Parliament Square in London.

George Brereton
One of the notorious Titanic gamblers, he was arrested in 1933 for swindling J.T. Taylor in a horse racing scam.

John (Sam) Collins
Samuel married to Florence Milly Grant on 25 June 1916 while still married to his first wife Harriet.

John Davis
While serving in he Army Service Corps in November 1904 he was sentenced to 14 days in the cells for not being alert (asleep?) at his post whilst acting as sentry. Other offences included having an untidy kit, disobedience and for curling his fringe forward out under his cap!

"John Dixon"
John Dixon reportedly had arrived from Belfast on Titanic, working his passage as a fireman's help. Being short of money he snatched a bag and ran into a nearby crowd, but was caught by a lad. Sentenced to 14 days' hard labour. Read more...

Edward Dorking
Was in jail several times and was once a candidate for deportation; some of his troubles may be related to his being homosexual at a time when that was illegal.

Frank Dymond
In the Royal Navy for a time, he abandoned his ship, Good Hope in late 1903, and was sentenced to 42 days hard labour.

Luigi Finoli
Was in trouble just after Titanic for theft of a watch and had a reputation for being quite a nasty character--even the Red Cross refused to help him because of his behaviour.

Dorothy Gibson
The former actress and opera singer ran over and killed a pedestrian while driving her lover Jules Brulatour's car. The resultant lawsuit brought out the truth of their affair but they weren't married till 1917.  She was later arrested and imprisoned for spying in Italy and Switzerland.

Robert Hichens
In addition to accidentally steering the world's largest ocean liner into an iceberg; he subsequently attempted to kill a man he felt had ripped him off over the purchase of a boat; he spent four years in prison for attempted murder.

Harry Homer
One of the gamblers, he had boarded as E. Haven.  According to family members was in serious trouble on several occasions but the exact details remain to be discovered!

Thomas McAndrew
Was detained in Cardiff Prison in 1911 having been convicted of stealing a purse. This event followed a string of similar misdemeanours n Liverpool and elsewhere dating back several years. Some question whether this Thomas McAndrew was the Titanic crew member.

Paddy McGough
In 1900 Killed a fellow shipmate after a fight and was charged with murder; convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to 15 months imprisonment with hard labour.  In 1910 he was convicted of a sexual assault on a victim named Lily Harper and sentenced to 3 months' hard labour.

William Mintram
Stabbed and wounded one George Barton at the Victory Inn on East Street; given one month's hard labour at Winchester Castle. Further brushes with the law for drunkenness and for assaulting a police officer. In 1902 killed his wife by stabbing her in the back.  Convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to twelve years of penal servitude.

Fatima Masselmany
Exact details of her misdemeanours are unknown, further research needed.

Juozas Montvila
An ordained priest, Jouzas secretly administered to the spiritual needs of the Uniates, a religious body proscribed by the Czarist regime. As a result of this service, he was arrested by the Russian government and was sentenced.

Michel Navartil
Effectively abducted his two boys from his estranged wife.  Boarded the Titanic under a pseudonym and was lost. The boys were eventually reunited with their mother.

Juha Niskanen
Details unknown, further research needed.

John Podesta
Sentenced to 12 weeks hard labour with others for "unlawfully combining together to neglect duty and to impede the navigation of the ship".

Edith Rosenbaum
Arrested by US Customs in 1917 on charges of smuggling foreign merchandise.

Christopher Shulver (J. Dilley)
Jailed several times for petty criminality; including stealing chain, criminal damage, stealing money, larceny and receiving stolen goods and stealing money from a gas meter.  Perhaps unsurprisingly used a pseudonym when he signed onto the Titanic.

Joseph George Scarrott
Sentenced to one month in prison for bigamy.

William T. Stead
In 1885 radical journalist William Stead arranged the abduction of a young girl, Eliza Armstrong, to highlight the dangers of modern slavery.  He served 3 months in jail.

Criterion Res.

John Thompson
In May 1912 fireman John Thompson got one month in prison for stealing a gold watch in Southsea. The owner claimed the watch was worth £8 but a sympathetic court marked it down to 25 shillings. Thompson was told that, having been lucky enough to escape the sinking, he should have the sense to stay out of trouble. Newspaper reports gave the name as James Thompson leading to the remote possibility that the criminal was not actually the Titanic fireman.

William Wilton
Possibly committed bigamy

William Henry Worthman / William Jarvis
Several times in prison for housebreaking and theft.

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