Miss Adāl Najīb Qiyāmah was born in Al Shwayr, Lebanon on 14 November 1896.
She was the daughter of Najīb Mansūr Qiyāmah (1874-1933), a merchant, and Marion Nassaf (1876-1956). She had seven known siblings: twins George Najīb and Jamīl Najīb (b. 1898), Fouad Mansūr (1901-1944), Fareed Najīb (b. 1904), Rose (b. 1906), Gilbert Najīb (1909-1992) and Samie (1915-1997).
Her father had emigrated to the USA around 1910 with a neighbour from their village, Sulaymān Dāwūd al-B'aqlīnī. By 1912 he was building the foundation for a silk and textile production plant and had saved enough money to start bringing his family across to be reunited with him. Sulaymān B'aqlīnī's wife and three daughters were making the journey to America and Adāl would accompany them, she with the intention of marrying. Her father had requested that she bring along numerous items which he was unable to obtain in New York, namely Turkish tobacco and cigars, rugs and various Arab foodstuffs such as olives, mint, sardines, lentils, chickpeas, figs and bulgur wheat, among other delicacies.
Adāl left her home village by a horse-drawn carriage and travelled to Beirut; from here she travelled to Marseille and then to Cherbourg. Their plans to sail were hampered when one of Mrs B'aqlīnī's daughters became afflicted with conjunctivitis and their departure was pushed back. She eventually boarded the Titanic on 10 April as a third class passenger (ticket number 2667 which cost £7, 4s, 6d) and shared a cabin with Laţīfah B'aqlīnī and her three young daughters: Mārīyā, Ūwjīnīyā and Hilānah.
On the night of the sinking Adāl and Mrs B'aqlīnī gathered up the children, dressed and put on their lifebelts before heading out on deck. There are conflicting versions of what happened next; one version states that Mrs B'aqlīnī asked Adāl to return to their cabin to fetch some jewellery and extra clothing; complying, when Adāl returned she could not find the B'aqlīnīs. Another version has Adāl make her way up to a lifeboat which she and the B'aqlīnīs all entered together, Mrs B'aqlīnī having to plead with a crewman who was preventing Adāl from boarding with them as she was not a blood relative! Another version, like many other survivor tales, has Mr Astor step in to help save her, carrying her in his arms to a lifeboat. The details of all versions of her survival are to be treated as suspect. She is believed to have been rescued in collapsible C with Mrs B'aqlīnī and her daughters.
Arriving in New York aboard Carpathia Adāl was treated in St Vincent's Hospital for shock and exposure; here she was reunited with her father who took she and the B'aqlīnīs to his home.
She was later joined in the USA by her mother and siblings who took up residence in Bronx, New York where her father continued to work in silk manufacture.
Adāl was married to Nayif Qiyāmah (aka Naif Kiamie) (b. 2 June 1889), a fellow Lebanese immigrant who had also emigrated in 1912 before working in the manufacture of infant's clothing. The family name was anglicised to Kiamie and Adāl became Adele.
Adāl and Naif had a daughter Leila (b. 1919) and a son Mitchell (b. 1921); the 1920 census shows the family living in an apartment on Seventh Avenue in Manhattan.
Adele Kiamie later developed skin cancer which was to lead to her death in Bronx, New York on 8 February 1924; she was 27 and was buried in Mt Olivet Cemetery two days later.
Her widower Naif later ran his own egg business, relocated to Brooklyn and was remarried to a woman named Nellie but had no more children. He died in April 1982 aged 93.
Her son Mitchell was still living in Florida as of early 2017.
Phillip Gowan, USA
Contract Ticket List, White Star Line 1912 (National Archives, New York; NRAN-21-SDNYCIVCAS-55)