Encyclopedia Titanica

Elizabeth Anne Mellenger

Mrs Claude Leinard Deschamps Mellenger was born as Elizabeth Anne Maidment in Pimlico, Middlesex, England in 1870 1.

She was the daughter of William Maidment (1831-1889), a porter, painter and later a bailiff, and Sarah Neale (1832-1927), natives of Wiltshire and Buckinghamshire respectively who were married in London in 1855. She had five known siblings: William Henry (b. 1858), Charles (b. 1859), Louisa (b. 1864), John (b. 1867) and Emily (b. 1873).

She first appears on the 1871 census as a resident of 27 Pulford Street, St Georges, London and on the 1881 census at 95 Islip Street, St Pancras, London. Her father died in 1889 and the 1891 census shows Elizabeth, her sister and widowed mother living at 40 Nielford (?) Road, Walthamstow, Essex and she is described as an unmarried dressmaker.

She was married in St Mary's Church, Islington on 13 March 1895 to Claude Leinard Deschamps Mellinger, a clerk. Claude had been born in Wimbledon, Surrey in 1874, the son of Claude Leinard Mellinger and Jane Deschamps, but was apparently raised by an elderly widow, Sylvia Carpenter, and her two spinster daughters, Sylvia and Elizabeth.

Elizabeth and Claude went on to have five children: Eugenie Claudine Emily (b. 1895, later Brunger), Alexander Leinard Deschamps (1896-1975), Violet Madeleine (b. 1899), Edmund Reginald (1900-1992) and Constance Sylvia (b. 1904, later Mrs Rupert Vance).

The family are shown (minus Claude who is listed at their home address, 10 Pembar? Road, Walthamstow) on the 1901 census as visitors to an address in Bournemouth. Claude and Elizabeth later became estranged, with the possibility he abandoned her. He resettled in Victoria, Australia sometime before 1910 and later lived with another woman named Ellen Costello. He died in Melbourne on 6 March 1952.

The 1911 census shows that Elizabeth faced dire circumstances in the wake of her husband's withdrawal from her life. She and her daughter Eugenie appeared living with the Carpenter sisters at 4 Old Field Road, Wimbledon, Surrey and she herself as a married domestic. Her other children were seemingly taken into care: Alexander was listed as an inmate at the Gordon's Boys Home in Chobham, Surrey and described as a part-time carpenter and her daughter Madeline at a children's home located at 34 Worple Road, Wimbledon. The whereabouts of her two youngest children is not clear.

In early 1912 Elizabeth had gained a position as a housekeeper in Bennington, Vermont, on the Fillmore Farms, the estate of the Colgate family who had founded the toothpaste brand. She and her daughter Violet Madeline boarded the Titanic at Southampton on 10 April 1912 as second-class passengers (ticket number 250644, which cost £19, 10s). Also aboard, albeit in first class, and bound for the same destination, was Charles Cresson Jones, the Fillmore Farms superintendant. He reportedly visited them in second class to show them pictures of Bennington.

Mrs Mellenger and her daughter survived the sinking. They entered lifeboat 14 and were later transferred to boat 12 by Fifth Officer Lowe. That boat would rescue the occupants of collapsible B, and Elizabeth assisted Second Officer Lightoller by putting her cape around him. He reportedly gave her his whistle in gratitude whilst aboard Carpathia.

After arriving in New York, she went to see the widow of Charles Cresson Jones in Bennington. They returned to England after the sinking but emigrated to Canada around 1915, settling in Toronto. According to one grandson, Elizabeth went deaf prematurely, and all her life suffered a nervous reaction from the shock of the sinking.

On 15 April 1939 she and her daughter, together with fellow survivors Emma Bliss and John Collins, met for a Titanic reunion dinner at the Royal York Hotel, Toronto.

Elizabeth Anne Mellenger died on 4 January 1962 and is buried in St. John's Ridgeway cemetery near Welland, Ontario.


  1. Birthdate widely circulated as 1 June 1870; however, her birth was registered in the first quarter of 1870 meaning that this cannot be correct.

References and Sources

Contract Ticket List, White Star Line 1912 (National Archives, New York; NRAN-21-SDNYCIVCAS-55[279]).
Marriages, births, deaths and injuries that have occurred on board during the voyage (PRO London, BT 100/259-260)
United States Senate (62nd Congress), Subcommittee Hearings of the Committee on Commerce, Titanic Disaster, Washington 1912
Toronto Star, April 16, 1939, Rescued by the Same Lifeboat Titanic Survivors United Again
Alan Hustak (1999) Titanic: The Canadian Story. Véhicule Press, ISBN 1-55065-113-7

Newspaper Articles

Edmonton Journal (27 April 1939) 1939 Meeting Of Toronto-based Titanic Survivors
Search archive online

Comment and discuss

  1. Barbara Provis

    I was fortunate enough to meet Madeleine Mellenger (Mrs. Mann) in l972 and spent a couple of afternoons with her. She was very kind and told me her story of the sinking and rescue. She was a good friend of Walter Lord. Mrs. Mann (nee Mellenger) was kind enough to give me a special letter signed with her name as it had appeared on the passenger list. She was 13 at the time and was travelling with her mother. She was going to meet her father in New York. Sadly, Mrs. Mann died several years ago but I treasure the two letters she wrote to me after our meetings. She was a charming lady and told me that the Titanic incident had influenced her whole life and that her husband was very good and long suffering to have put up with playing second fiddle to the Titanic for so many years. Barbara Provis Toronto
  2. BKDriver

    How did Madeleine Mellinger's copper bracelet end up in the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge, TN?
  3. richard c mellenger

    Hi All. Elizabethmellenger was my Grandmother. and madeline My aunt. I was fortunate to meet them both.. I am curious that a Bracelet Is in a museum In Pigeon Forks. TN.. must try to visit some day. all the best. this is being posted on the anniversary of the sinking.april 15th 2011 Richard C Mellenger. Surrey BC .
  4. KandaceHowlett

    In the museum it tells of how the bracelet came to be there. Family members ended up giving it to a close friend of the family and he happened to be with collecting items from the Titanic and thats how it came to be there. But, it tells in the museum in Piegon Forge in more details...... I can't remember it all. : )
  5. db

     I got her boarding pass when I visited the Titanic Attraction in Pigeon Forge. It states that her lucky copper bracelet is on display courtesy of Ed and Karen Kamuda of the Titanic Historical Society. She actually lost this bracelet when she was boarding a lifeboat and later found it in on the floor on the front of the boat. It's pretty banged up and dented. From I remember of the story she gave it to Ed to put on display.
  6. Jasmine-Rose Mae Lillian Richa

    was this the girl who had her diary published by the "my story" series? Because I know I've heard her name at school and we are reading the book.
  7. Isabel Hanisch

    I am doing a report on the Titanic and Miss Mellinger is so getting in it!! Does anyone know her religion???
  8. Cassandra

    How can I get in touch with you
  9. Abby (3228)

    How can I get in touch with you? I am doing a project on Madeline and I would like to find out some more information.
  10. Rosa Roedner

    That is so amazing! I am currently writing a novel about your aunt and grandmother! They were such amazing people!
  11. Evan (4421)

    Hi Rosa, Madeline is my great, great grandmother. Would love to hear about the book you're writing. Thanks, Evan
  12. Paul A Mellenger

    Some inaccuracies in this report, They went to Welland Ont, where Elizabeth had a brother, Reginald, had been working for him for a few yrs prior, and had gone back to England and accompaned my dad A L Mellenger to New York
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Titanic Passenger Summary

Name: Mrs Elizabeth Anne Mellenger (née Maidment)
Nationality: English
Marital Status: Married to Claude Leinard Deschamps Mellinger
Last Residence: in Wimbledon, London, England
Occupation: Servant
Embarked: Southampton on Wednesday 10th April 1912
Ticket No. 250644, £19 10s
Rescued (boat 14)  
Disembarked Carpathia: New York City on Thursday 18th April 1912
Died: Thursday 4th January 1962 aged 92 years
Buried: St. John's Ridgeway Cemetery, Welland, Ontario, Canada

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