Encyclopedia Titanica

Mantūrah Būlus Mūsà Franjīyah

Syrian Third Class Passenger

Mrs Mantora Boulos Moussa Frangie (Mantūrah Būlus Mūsà Franjīyah, formerly Duwaihī) is believed to have been a native of Zghartā (زغرتا), Syria in the Ottoman Empire (current-day Lebanon) around 1865.1 She came from a Maronite Christian family of Assyrian ethnicity. Little else is known about her early life or background. 

Described as a 35-year-old widow, Mantora boarded the Titanic at Cherbourg as a third-class passenger (ticket number 2626, which cost £7 4s 7d), and according to the Carpathia manifest, she was travelling from Hardīn, Syria and destined for Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania to the home of a “nephew,” Joseph Bashir Tannus (Joseph Bechin). She is believed to have travelled with a large group of Syrians hailing from Hardīn, and her ticket number is sequential to Thamīn Tannūs (Thelma Thomas) of that village. She stated her nearest relative in Syria was Elias Koury of Hardīn; interestingly, Thamīn Tannūs’ father was named Ilyās Khūrī, and they may be one and the same. Whilst aboard, she shared a cabin with another woman from Hardīn, again possibly Thamīn Tannūs.

Mantora survived the sinking of the Titanic, in which lifeboat remains unclear. 

Modern-day family challenge many of the established details about Mantora; they say she was not aged 35 but much older (probably closer to 43 or even older) and was not from Hardīn but from 50km further north in the city of Zghartā. They also state that she was not a widow but then still married to Būlus Mūsà Franjīyah (Paul Moussa) and with three children: Peter, Mary2 and Lillian. Her destination in the USA was not to Wilkes-Barre but to Troy, New York where she already had numerous family members and friends, including a sister (or sister-in-law).

Elias (2011) speculates that early in her travels, Mantora met Thamīn Tannūs and, from then on, attached herself to that group of passengers. Unable to communicate in English, following her survival from the Titanic disaster and arriving in New York, Mantora-confused and frightened-provided erroneous details as to her eventual destination, details shared to her by Thamīn Tannūs. Several Arabic newspapers at the time confirmed that she was a native of Zghartā.

What is known is that Mantora was brought to St Vincent’s Hospital in New York for recuperation and after a short while, a telegram was sent to her family in Troy, informing them of her safety. The husband of her niece Dora (née Franjīyah), Georges Joseph Nohra, a dry goods merchant in Troy, travelled to Manhattan to meet Mantora and return with her to that city. Arriving in Troy on 21 April, Mantora reportedly, through an interpreter, gave a brief interview to the local newspapers about her experiences.

Mrs Mantora Moussa, of St. Mary's Avenue, was a passenger on the Titanic, which was lost a year ago today and she celebrated her escape from a watery grave by filing through her attorney, Harry E. Clinton, a claim for $5,000 against The Oceanic Steam Navigation Company.—Troy Times, 15 April 1913

Mantora settled in Troy and, in following years, was joined by her daughter Mary; Mary was married to Jamil (James) Karam, a native of Ehden, Syria, with whom she raised a family. The family initially settled in Troy and appear there on the 1920 census, with Mantora (listed as Mantoura Frangea) listed with them. The family later moved to Gloversville, New York, before settling in Springfield, Massachusetts. 

In the 1920s Mantora returned to Zghartā to nurse her ailing husband, who eventually died around 1925. It is assumed that she remained there until her death, reported by her family to have taken place in or around 1944.

Her daughter Mary Karam died in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1974 and is buried in Saint Michael’s Cemetery with her husband and children. 


  1. According to the passenger manifest, she was 35 years old in 1912; present-day family state that she was much older and the 1920 census states that she was then 55 years old, placing her age in 1912 closer to 43. Family state that she died in 1944 aged 84, placing her year of birth as circa 1860 and her age in 1912 as around 52.
  2. Mary was born 15 June 1893.

Research Articles

Titanica! (2018) Titanic: The Disappeared
Which Titanic survivors have never been found?
Search archive online

Comment and discuss

Reply Watch Thread

Titanic Passenger Summary

Name: Mrs Mantūrah Būlus Mūsà Franjīyah (née Duwaihī)
Age: 52 years   (Female)
Nationality: Syrian Lebanese
Religion: Maronite Christian
Last Residence: in Hardīn, Batroun, Syria
Occupation: Housewife
Embarked: Cherbourg on Wednesday 10th April 1912
Ticket No. 2626, £7 4s 7d
Disembarked Carpathia: New York City on Thursday 18th April 1912
Died: 1944 in Syria

Page Options

Watch this page

Improve this Biography

If you have any corrections or something to add please  get in touch