Photo: Le Soir, May 5, 1912, p.7
Mr Isidor Straus, 67, was born in Rhenish Bavaria on 6th February, 1845. In 1854 he emigrated to the United States settling, with his family, in the town of Talbotton, Georgia. Straus' father (Lazarus Straus) established a dry-goods business called "L. Straus & Company." and Isidor is listed in the 1860 census as being a clerk at this store. Between 1656 and 1861 he was educated at the Collinsworth Institute in Talbotton. In 1862, the Straus family moved to Columbus and Lazarus Straus opened another dry-goods business. Isidor went to work for a company that engaged in blockade running for the Confederate States (it was the time of the American Civil War). After the war, Isidor moved to New York and with his brother Nathan, became involved in the firm of R.H. Macy & Co. Finaly acquiring ownership of the firm in 1896. In addition to his business enterprise he served as a Congressman for New York State between 1895 and 1897.
Early in April 1912 Isidor, his wife Ida and their daughter Beatrice had travelled to Europe on the HAPAG Liner Amerika, it was their custom to travel by German steamer wherever possible.
For their return (Beatrice was absent) they boarded the Titanic at Southampton, travelling with them were Isidor's manservant John Farthing and Ida's newly employed maid Ellen Bird. The Straus's occupied cabins C-55-57 (ticket number PC 17483, £221 15s 7d).
Isidor Straus and his wife both died in the disaster. The body of Mr Straus was later recovered by the Mackay-Bennett (#96).
NO. 96 - MALE - ESTIMATED AGE, 65 - FRONT GOLD TOOTH (Partly) - GREY HAIR AND MOUSTACHE
CLOTHING - Fur-lined overcoat; grey trousers, coat and vest; soft striped shirt; brown boots; black silk socks.
EFFECTS - Pocketbook; gold watch; platinum and pearl chain; gold pencil case; silver flask; silver salts bottle; £40 in notes; £4 2s 3d in silver.
FIRST CLASS - NAME - ISADOR STRAUSS
Isidor Straus was buried at Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx, NY.
Courtesy of Michael A. Findlay, USA
40,000 people gathered for the couple's memorial service which was held in New York City. Eulogies read included one by Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919). Two years later a second service was held to inaugurate Straus Square on Broadway and 107th Street.
Some sources indicate that Straus was initially buried at Beth-El Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY. but later moved to Woodlawn Cemetery where a private mausoleum was constructed.
A Freshman Dormitory in Harvard Yard is named after them: Straus Hall.