15    Apr 201213 comments

Titanic’s 100th Anniversary: Your stories

As the world commemorates the 100th anniversary of the tragic sinking of the Titanic, families are still affected by April 15, 1912.

Many MyHeritage members have a personal connection to this tragedy. We invited them to share their Titanic stories for today's special post.

Thank you to everyone who shared their personal stories.

Henry W. Gradidge, England:

Mr. Ernest Edward Gradidge, 32, of Southampton, died in the Titanic sinking. His body was recovered by the Mackay-Bennett and was buried at Fairview Cemetery, Halifax, Nova Scotia on 6 May 1912.
This is the description:
NO. 276. - MALE. - ESTIMATED AGE, 30. VERY FAIR HAIR AND MOUSTACHE.
CLOTHING - Green suit; mourning band; flannel shirt.
EFFECTS - Pipe; key; padlock; purse; three shillings; British Seafarer Union Book, No. 560.
FIREMAN.
NAME - C. GRADIAGE
He was wearing a mourning band for his brother Stephen John Gradidge who drowned from the Royal Mail Ship Thames in Buenos Aires on December 26th 1911
Their brother William Charles sailed on the Olympic, "sister ship to the Titanic"

Marek Jankowski, Poland:

When I began researching my family tree 20 years ago, I realized that a number of my relatives had passed away at a very young age. It was then that I heard the story about one of these individuals, my great-grandfather (Jankowski), who we think died in the Titanic disaster.

My grandfather, a policeman, moved to Łódź, Poland just before World War I. It was then that he stopped receiving any news from his father. The last correspondence he received from his father was a postcard from England that arrived in Poland in late April/early May 1912, saying that he couldn’t find a good job in England and so would be travelling to America "on a big new ship."

Following this postcard, he never again contacted his wife and children, and so we believe he died on the Titanic. I’m sure he would have belonged to the third class of passengers, who were most of the victims. It’s hard to believe that if he did survive, that he wouldn’t have tried to contact his family in Poland as he had done up until the time of this catastrophe. Therefore, after associating the dates and facts, we believe that he was one of the victims of this disaster.

Emily Smith, Canada:

My Titanic story isn't a profound one, but it has stuck with me since I was a little girl.

My paternal grandmother, Emily A. Verity, was travelling to England to be with her husband who was working there for a short while, along with her two children, Cecil and Alice. I'm not sure what the name of the ship was that she was on, but she recounted how as they were nearing the shores of England, they passed the Titanic starting out on her journey. They came close enough to each other that the passengers on both decks waved to each other for several minutes.

Of course, they didn't know that in just a few days, the ship, and most of her passengers, would be at the bottom of the sea. I’ve always had a "soft" spot for the Titanic and her passengers. May they rest in peace.

Brian Jennings, South Africa:

George Green born 1871, husband of Mrs. Theresa Green, and my great-great- grandfather, a native of Coventry, had decided to emigrate to America and booked his passage on the Titanic. He was a farrier on his way to Lead City, South Dakota.

George paid £8 1s for his third class passage. He and his family had resided at Dorking for some years. Mrs. Theresa Janet Green and her three children came to stay in Coventry with her parents, while George found his feet in America. Mrs. Green was to have joined her husband in America using the second voyage of the Titanic, which never happened.

Mrs. Green had received some letters written by her husband during the voyage. On the evening of the disaster, one of the children was writing a note to Daddy.

George's brother-in-law was E.A.Morris of Coventry. Green had sent him a photograph of the Titanic with dimensions and a message, "Lovely Sailing."

As a result of her husband's death, the three children were eventually sent to different homes as there was too little money to raise the children - even though Theresa and her children were awarded a weekly pension from the Mansion House Titanic Relief Fund.

The probate report showed that George left £45 16s 8d to the family. To date, I have still not been able to trace one of the children.

George's body was never found and his place of death is recorded as Lat 41deg 16 N, Long 50 deg 14 W.

Dee Johnson, USA:

My grandmother’s oldest brother's wife had passage booked to go on the voyage - she got sick and had to cancel her reservation!

Derval Cleland:

While working on my family tree, I found out that my grandfather, Will Boland, was in Cork watching the Titanic set sail. He waved at the ship and its passengers while thinking of how lucky they all were as they sailed away to start a new life.

John Joseph Pozega III, USA:

My grandfather John Joseph Pozega was born in Croatia in 1886 and arrived in New York City on May 29, 1912, aboard the Carpathia. He boarded the Carpathia in Fiume on May 11, 1912. From passenger lists, I believe this was the first voyage of the Carpathia to the USA, after it rescued people from the Titanic in April.

Joseph Weber, Canada:

While doing family research, my grandmother’s youngest sister told me a story about my maternal great grandmother, Teresa Simon. As many others did early in 20th century, Teresa left her family in Poland and came to Canada to earn money to support them. Teresa worked as a housekeeper in a famous spa in Kitchener. Eventually, she saved enough money and bought a ticket to return to Poland. The name of the ship, that she was to return on, was the Titanic. Needless to say, Teresa did not return on this ship following its sinking.

Thanks again to everyone who shared stories. Brian Jennings - a copy of Dr. Nick Barratt’s book - Lost Voices from the Titanic - is on it's way to you.

Do you have a Titanic story to share? Please email stories@myheritage.com or post a comment below.

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Comments (13) Trackbacks (1)
  1. It is so nice that this occasion is remembered all over the world and treated with such respect. May they all R.I.P
  2. So amazing to read the stories of ordinary people who were on board and the families they left behind. We so often hear about the celebrities, but this is a great tribute to the third class passengers. Thanks to all for posting. Every story is remarkable.
  3. In memory of the 1500, R.I.P.
  4. To all the lost souls that were lost in such a profound and sad accident, this is what I would love to believe, but as the years have unfolded we have come to know that is such a un-necessary lost of life. I have watched most programmes and doumentaries over the years about the Titanic, and this has not changed over this memorial weekend.
    I found out how much of a role Nova Scotia played in the aftermath of the Titanic and to see the numbering system instead of names to this day is so shocking and the grave of the unknown little boy aged between 3-4 years, this makes you feel sick as to what these people went through on such a horrific night.
    My thoughts and prayers are for the souls who died on this horrific night and in later years.
    RIP to one and all of the 1517 souls lost on this night and to the souls of the survivours who had to find away to go on with their lives.
  5. God have mercy in their souls R.I.P all of them .....
  6. Could Brian Jennnings, from South Africa please make contact again. My name is elizabeth and I am researching my local history.
    George Green, who died on the Titanic has a headstone in my local church in Fawley near Henley-on-Thames, Oxon, England.

    Also on the stone is a Sarah Green who died in 1921.

    Would like to chat about George.
  7. Many thanks for passing on Brian Jennings E-mail, in South Africa. George Green, who drowned on the Titanic, has a headstone in my local churchyard in Fawley, near Henley-on-Thames. He is not buried there but is included on the headstone of his sister Sarah Anne who died in 1921, aged 44. I have been able to tell Brian that Georges parents Ned and Mary were from Falmer, had eleven children and what became of them all. Also about George's wife Theresa's family, called Morris who were in the watch making trade. I have e-mailed him the family tree.

    Many thanks
    Elizabeth
  8. i will never forget titanic , titanic tells me the importance of life and our relatives....
  9. i remember hearing of the titanic as a child in the early fortys unknown to me my famly were irish maiden name donoghue but lived kensington london my mother moved to edgebaston 1943 i am now traceing if she got married to a mullis in birmingham if any one come across donoghue traceing there fam could be related so sad of all the loss the film my friend sent me the the 2012 titanic medal from ireland just want to go over to see all at bellfast
  10. a great liner it was
  11. my famly were irish and it was the irish who built that great ship so its that my maiden name was donoghue that my famly i did not know so its the reason ive interest in the titanic who lost there lives when one here in the fortys i was not even awhere i had irish conections but its who lost there lives so sad pleased there remembered rip all
  12. When speaking to my husbands father we found out that one of his relatives had tickets for that voyage but were late & missed the ship sailing & had to take a later ship. since this was a direct relative of his Dad we can assume that my husband might not have been born if that relative had made it on time.
  13. My Grandparents Sarah and Lipman Joseph, my father Joseph Abe age one, and Celia age three booked passage on the Titanic in April 1912.My grandmother was sick and they took the Cassandra instead and arrived safely in New Brunswick on April 30TH, 1912.
    My father always regarded this as Miracle#1, he survived a crash of his Canso as a Flight Instructor in B.C. in WW11 and received the Flying Cross, Miracle #2, and Miracle#3 was that he lived to write 3 journals about his life and lived to the age of 99. Feb 24,1911-March 20,2010. My Hero Father Joseph Abraham Joseph.

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