Mrs Elmer Zebley Taylor (Juliet Cummings Wright) was born in Smyrna, Kent, Delaware on 30 November 1862.
She was the daughter of Joseph Wright (1829-1909), a carpenter originally from England, and Elizabeth Carter (1833-1868). Her known siblings were: Lilly (1855-1880), Joseph (1857-1922), Edgar Samuel (1861-1923) and Susan Raymond (1865-1924).
Juliet's mother passed away in 1868 and she and her remaining family are shown on the 1870 and 1880 census records still living in Smyrna. She was married in 1886 to Elmer Zebley Taylor (b. 1864), an engineer who also hailed from Smyrna.
Known as a pioneer in the paper container industry, Elmer designed and manufactured automatic machinery for moisture-proof paper food containers. He began the manufacture of paper cups in England in 1906 under the name Mono Containers Ltd, which had factories in ten countries and then opened Mono Service Co. in Newark, New Jersey in 1910. Juliet and Elmer had moved to England in the 1890s and were avid globe-trotters, remaining childless.
The Taylors would spend many summers in East Orange, New Jersey and they were heading there from London at the time of the disaster. They boarded the Titanic at Southampton as first class passengers (ticket number 19996 which cost £52) and they occupied cabin C-126; also travelling aboard was Fletcher Lambert-Williams, Elmer's business partner.
On the night of the sinking Mr Taylor reported that he was awakened by the impact. He and his wife got up and dressed, leaving their stateroom. On their way to the boat deck they passed Lambert-Williams' cabin and knocked the door; he answered but said he didn't believe it worthwhile to get up. They never saw him again.
Mr and Mrs Taylor were rescued in one of the first lifeboats to be lowered from the forward end of the boat deck on the starboard side. Probably either Lifeboat 5 or 7. Mrs Taylor recalled:
"I had retired to my stateroom for the night, and I was reading a book when there came a bump that seemed to raise the boat about 6 inches. Wondering what happened, we dressed hurriedly, rather out of curiosity then alarm. We were able to see an iceberg that seemed like a mountain of snow close at hand. There seemed to be no excitement and no appreciation of what had happened.
"Just then an officer came up and told us not to be alarmed, but to go down and put on our life belts. It did not seem to be possible that it would be safer to go into one of the little boats, and I preferred to stay on board. My husband persuaded me to get into the second lifeboat lowered on our side, and as there were several men waiting to get in and no women there at the time the boat was lowered and my husband and a number of other men were allowed to get in and join their wives, who were already in.
"After we had rowed away from the Titanic we saw the ship suddenly go down, the lights going out on one deck after another, until with a sudden dip, the Titanic was under the water.
Terrible wails rose to the sky.
"The screams of the people who remained on board rose in a terrible wail to the sky. The sound of it still lingers in my ears.
It was the most horrible thing I ever heard". — Newburgh Daily News, 19 April 1912
Juliet and Elmer resettled in East Orange, New Jersey in 1914 but continued to travel extensively. Ships they later sailed aboard included: Paris, Majestic, Homeric, and several voyages aboard Olympic.
Juliet Taylor died in Atlantic City, New Jersey on 23 April 1927 aged 64. She was buried with her family in St Peter's Cemetery, Smyrna and when Elmer died in 1949 he was buried with her.