Miss Ruth Taussig was born in Manhattan, New York on 25 November 1893.
She was the daughter of a Bohemian-born father, Emil Taussig (b. 1857) and a New York-born mother of German parentage, Tillie Mandelbaum (b. 1872). Her parents had married on 18 January 1893 and Ruth was to be their only child. Emil, her father, was President of the West Disinfecting Company in Buffalo, New York.
The family appear on the 1900 census as residents of 1335 Madison Avenue, Manhattan and Emil was described as a disinfectant manufacturer. By the 1910 census they are still residents of Madison Avenue, later living at 777 West End Avenue by 1912.
Following a visit to Vienna, the Taussigs boarded the Titanic at Southampton as first class passengers (joint ticket number 110413 which cost £79, 13s). Ruth occupied cabin E68.
On the night of the sinking the Taussigs were reportedly alerted to the danger by German steward Alfred Theissinger, he telling them "You better put on your lifebelts and rush out on deck." "Is it as serious as all that?" asked Mr Taussig. "Yes, hurry" was Theissinger's reply. The family went up to the boat deck and Ruth entered lifeboat 8, followed by her mother who had spent time trying to persuade officers to let men into half-filled boat. Her mother later related that a crewman in their boat took Ruth's furs from her, telling her that she wouldn't be needing them; she never saw them again. Whilst Ruth and her mother survived the sinking, her father was among the lost.
Following her arrival in New York she and her mother stayed with her grandfather, Herman Mandelbaum at 1,229 Park Avenue.
Ruth was married on 1 December 1915 to New York-born tobacco merchant Julius Bernhard Lichtenstein (b. 19 June 1887), the son of Bernhard and Bertha Lichtenstein, the latter née Reich. The couple went on to have two daughters, Eleanor (b. 20 November 1916) and Alice (b. 11 March 1920). By the time of the 1920 census the family were residing on Broadway, Manhattan and Julius was employed by the J. Lewis Cigar Company in Newark, New Jersey.
Ruth died on 9 January 1925 as a result of typhoid; she was aged just 31 and was later buried in Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Hawthorne, New York.
Her widower Julius was remarried to Beatrice (b. 1898), a native of St Louis, Missouri, and they had a son named James (b. 1930). By the time of the 1930s they were living at 262 Central Park, Manhattan and would make frequent trans-Atlantic trips; one such journey in 1932 was aboard the Morro Castle. The family changed their name to "Lane" sometime in the 1930s, appearing on the 1940 census under that guise.
Julius died in Manhattan on 2 May 1940 and his widow Beatrice later became involved in a dispute with her step-daughter Eleanor over Julius' will. Eleanor had married a statistician, Julius Asch (b. 1912) in 1939 but became of her and her sister Alice is not clear. Likewise, the fate of Julius' widow and son are not clear.
Michael A. Findlay
State of New York Standard Certificate of Death
Articles and Stories
New York Times (1912)
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(2017) Ruth Taussig Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #294, accessed 21st February 2017 05:11:55 AM)
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