Encyclopedia Titanica

Ethel Louisa Beane

Ethel Beane

Mrs Ethel Louisa Beane (née Clarke) was born on 15 November 1889 1 in Norwich, Norfolk, England.

Her parents were George Alfred, a brewer's labourer born ca. 1868 in Norwich, and Lucy (nee Miles; b. ca. 1869 in Norwich) Clarke, who had married in early 1891 in Norwich, Norfolk. In 1901, she was 8 years old and lived at Nicholas Street in Norwich with her parents and siblings Sydney George, 10, Lily Flora, 5, Hilda Lucy, 4, and Agnes Hagar, 1. In 1911, there were five additional siblings: Ida May, 9, George Alfred, 6, Gladys, 4, Gertrud, 2, and Charles, 1.

She first appears on the 1891 census living at 172 Northumberland Street, Heigham, Norwich and would still be at this address by the time of the 1901 census. She was still living with her family by the time of the 1911 census, now at 21 Churchill Road, Norwich and was described as a single dressmaker and furrier.

Ethel was married in early 1912 (this article suggests, just three days before Titanic sailed) to Edward Beane (b. 1879), a bricklayer and a former neighbour who also spent time living in Northumberland Street. The couple made plans to settle in New York where Edward had spent a few years before his return to England to marry. They boarded the Titanic at Southampton as second class passengers (ticket number 2908 which cost £26).

On the night of the sinking Ethel and her husband managed to escape in lifeboat 9, Mr Beane being one of a very few number of second class males who survived. He would later claim that his wife was placed in the lifeboat which was lowered and he leapt off the deck into the ocean to swim to her lifeboat.

Ethel gave birth to a stillborn baby on 13 January 1913 so it is likley she was pregnant on board the Titanic.

The couple settled in Rochester, New York and lived at 44 Michigan Street in that city for the rest of their lives and never returned to England. They had two children, both sons: Edward (1913-1982) and George (1916-1998) and during the rest of their lives spoke about the Titanic on seldom occasions, only giving the odd newspaper interview.

Ethel Beane in 1931
Courtesy of Phillip Gowan, USA

Ethel was widowed in 1948 when her husband died aged 68 and she continued to live at the family home in Rochester before entering a nursing home in the last two years of her life. She died on 17 September 1983 aged 93 (although she had convinced everyone she was only 90) and was buried with her husband in White Haven Memorial Park.


  1. Birthdate frequently given as 15 November 1892. She claimed to be 19 when on Titanic and in later interviews claimed to be 17 and it was stated that she was 90 when she died. Her birth was registered in the last quarter of 1889 and the fact that she appears on the 1891 census confirms that she was 22 going on 23 in 1912 and when she died she was in fact just shy of her 94th birthday.

References and Sources

The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, April 15, 1931, Sinking of Titanic Still Horror to Couple Honeymooning on Ship
New York State Department of Health Certificate of Death
The Rochester Democrat October 26, 1948, Obituary
Contract Ticket List, White Star Line 1912 (National Archives, New York; NRAN-21-SDNYCIVCAS-55[279])
List or Manifest of Alien Passengers for the United States Immigration Officer At Port Of Arrival (Date: 18th-19th June 1912, Ship: Carpathia) - National Archives, NWCTB 85 T715 Vol 4183
Peter Boyd-Smith (1994) Titanic, From Rare Historical Reports. Southampton, Steamship Publications.
Unidentified newspaper, 20 September 1985 How City Pair Fared in the US
Unidentified newspaper, 14 April 1992 Dream of new life ended with tragedy

Newspaper Articles

The Globe (18 April 1912) Tragic Honeymoons
Among the passengers of the ill-fated Titanic were a number of honeymoon couples
Norwich Mercury (20 April 1912) Mr and Mrs Edward Beane
New York Times (21 April 1912) WOMEN WORK HARD FOR RESCUED FOLK
Margaret Frawley Rochester Democrat and Chronicle (15 April 1931) SINKING OF TITANIC STILL HORROR TO COUPLE HONEYMOONING ON SHIP
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle (17 September 1983) TITANIC SURVIVOR ETHEL BEANE DIED IN NURSING HOME
New York Times (20 September 1983) Ethel Beane, Who Survived Titanic Sinking, Dead at 90

Documents and Certificates

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Comment and discuss

  1. roger harry wakefield

    roger harry wakefield

    My fathers auntie ( my great aunt) was a honeymooning couple on the titanic they were mr.&mrs Beane ethel &edward. If anyone has any information of any living family that they know of, or you are a relative i would love to here from them. If you could help please e-mail me on my name is roger i live in the u.k thank you

  2. Bonnie Beane

    Hi Roger, My Name is Bonnie Beane. I am the great niece of Edward Beane and new to this site. I hope you receive this message and respond. I live in the USA but I know a number of Beanes stayed in England.

  3. Lester Mitcham

    Hello Bonnie, When you click onto Roger's name it comes up that he is no longer a member of this board. - "The profile that you have requested no longer exists. The user who created this profile has been deleted from the system." To make contact you should use Roger's e-mail address:

  4. Bob Godfrey

    Hallo, Bonnie. I'm not sure where he is now, but several years ago I corresponded with Roger and we met several times to exchange information about the Beane and Clarke families in Norwich, UK (Ted's wife was Ethel Clarke). So if the email address doesn't work I might be able to help. Can I ask what exactly is your family connection to Ted Beane? Did he have a brother who emigrated to the US? As far as I know there are no longer any direct descendants with the name Beane, as all of Ted and Ethel's grandchildren were girls.

  5. Bob Godfrey

    Here's a bit of info about the Beane family. Ted's father was George Beane, who married Mary Ann Cox, the daughter of a fish merchant, in 1877 in the village church at Smallburgh in the county of Norfolk. Their birthplaces were Knapton and Barton Turf, nearby villages in the NE corner of the county, not far from the sea. After several moves, they settled in the city of Norwich, where most of their children were born in the suburb of Heigham. Ted had been born earlier in Hoveton St John, a nearby village. George and Mary had ten children that I know of. In order of birth these were: ... Read full post

  6. Bonnie Beane

    Hi Bob, I am so thrilled to hear from you!!!!!!!!!! I never knew ANY of the things that you told me about my great-grandparents. My grandfather was Ernest C. My father, Ernest George, told me father's middle name was Christmas. NO kidding. Allegedly he was born on or around Christmas day. My grandfather came from England when he was approximately 20 years old, give or take. He went to Canada and met my grandmother, Winifred Hallam, who was from Quebec, of English descent. My father, Ernest George was born in Eustus, Quebec, Canada on December 1, 1911. My dad was the... Read full post

  7. Jessica Nedwetzky

    Hello bob, I would also like to know some of the things that you know. i know little about Edwards brothers and sisters. accsept Ernest C.. I hope to learn alot more. Feel free to e-mail me. - Jessica

  8. Bob Godfrey

    Bonnie and Jessica, it's good to see you both here. I'll need to search through my files (bits of information written on the backs of old envelopes and scattered about the house!), then I'll be in touch by email very soon. Bob

  9. Bonnie Beane

    Jessica, what do you know about Edward's siblings? The only sibling of Edward's that I know anything about is my grandfather. Clue me in. Bonnie

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Titanic Passenger Summary

Name: Mrs Ethel Louisa Beane (née Clarke)
Age: 22 years 5 months (Female)
Nationality: English
Marital Status: Married to Edward Beane
Last Residence: in Norwich, Norfolk, England
Embarked: Southampton on Wednesday 10th April 1912
Ticket No. 2908, £26
Rescued (boat 9)  
Disembarked Carpathia: New York City on Thursday 18th April 1912
Cause of Death:
Buried: White Haven Memorial Park, Pittsford, New York, United States

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