Oscar Wilhelm Olsson, 32, was born 8 September 1879,the son of skipper Johan Olsson and Maria Emanuelsdotter of Lunna, Myckleby, Orust Island, near Gothenburg, Sweden. He had two brothers, Olof and John.
Olsson began his career as a sailor on the schooner Edit from Uddevalla under his fathers command. In the early 1900s he emigrated to USA and signed on ore ships on the great lakes, working mostly under the Norwegian skipper Petersen. In America Oskar Olsson changed his name to Johansson, according to himself "because everyone had problem to pronounce Olsson on the right way and of course my fathers name was Johan".
In 1911 Olsson returned to Sweden and was married on New Year's Eve to Maria Abrahamson. The earnings were low on Orust so Olsson wrote to Captain Petersen who promised him a place back on the Bulgaria.
Olsson travelled with Karl Johan Johansson and Samuel Niklasson, they boarded the Titanic at Southampton. Only Olsson survived on collapsible A. He recalled that on reaching the Carpathia he went down to the engine room to get warm again. As soon as he reached New York he sent a telegram to his wife "Saved, Oscar."
The Woman's Relief Committee in New York gave him $50.
On his way to join the Bulgaria he assisted a boy who had survived to find his parents and an American paper wrote an article "Man saved from Titanic, lost between New York and Detroit." He had not notified captain Petersen, and no one knew where he was. He came late to Bulgaria and signed on another of the company's ships, but that ship ran aground and sank! Olsson saved himself in his underwear but after that incident he had problems with his stomach and his nerves.
On 9 May 1912 he paid the consulate in Chicago $1 for a new passport he had lost his old one on Titanic.
He returned to Sweden in 1918 and worked as rigger on Allmag shipyard on the West coast. Later, he and his wife had a family hotel.
He died at Trolltorp Old People's Home on Orust Apr. 5 1967.
Link and cite this biography
(2017) Oscar Wilhelm Olsson Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #1099, accessed 24th January 2017 04:59:38 AM)
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