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Lusitania

A remarkable series of articles telling the story of the Lusitania disaster in 1915.

Highlights

Lest We Forget : The Lusitania

 

Posts

Antiques dealer and family lost in disaster

The tragic story of Lusitania victim Edward Booth-Jones his wife and two children.

The Voyager's Dream

The story of Lusitania Victim William Henry Helm Brown. William Henry Helm Brown was born in Aberdeen, Scotland, at 2am on the morning of the 28th April 1881; he was not destined to grow up there. His father, Alexander Brown moved the whole…

The Champagne King, the playwright and the Savoy Hotel

Lusitania survivior George Kessler. In 1889, the Savoy Hotel was the most modern hotel London had ever seen. Built by Richard D’Oyly Carte, it had over 200 bedrooms, 67 marble bathrooms, a 24 hour room service, en-suite rooms and “speaking…

Philadelphia Banker and wife - Harry J & Mary Keser

Two victims of the Lusitania sinking Mr Harry J. Keser, Born 30th March 1873 - Died 7th May 1915 Mrs Mary Bringhurst Floyd Keser, Born 25th January 1865 - Died 7th May 1915   Mr and Mrs Keser of Philadelphia 
According to the Pennsylvania…

William Meriheina : An inventive survivor

The story of William Meriheina, Lusitania survivor and inventor of the car radio. RMS LUSITANIA: SPEED & STEALTH by David E Olivera One occasionally runs across a story that expands beyond its obvious borders, and continues to expand…
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The Lusitania : Part 1 : Contents

Stories life and death from the sinking of the Lusitania. …if it wasn’t for the worry I could say we’ve had a lovely trip. Nellie Huston, Lusitania Victim Image courtesy of Harald Advokaat 1. Contents 2. Introduction William…
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The Lusitania : Part 2 : Three Narratives

Each May marks the anniversary of one of the 20th century’s most notorious events; the sinking, by torpedo, of Cunard Line’s Lusitania off the coast of Ireland with the loss of 1198 lives. While she lived, Lusitania was known as one of a…
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The Lusitania : Part 3 : The Survivor

Lusitania survivor Barbara McDermott tells her story. There are two known Lusitania survivors alive at this writing. (January 2008)  Barbara McDermott, a personal friend to us all, appears in several segments narrated in the first person.…
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The Lusitania : Part 4 : The Families

Only a handful of the Lusitania’s families, and we are expanding the term ‘families’ to include mothers traveling with children, survived intact. Most did not survive at all. by Cecelia Owens. Courtesy of Carol Keeler Ronald…
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The Lusitania : Part 5 : The Struggle to Abandon Ship

Robert William Whaley, John Idwal Lewis and Walter Dawson Robert William Whaley... One of the few fortunate aspects of the Lusitania disaster was its timing. The majority of the passengers were high up in the ship, relaxing after lunch,…
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The Lusitania : Part 6 : The Port Boats

One enduring Lusitania myth is that of the chaos that reigned along her port side during her final eighteen minutes. Both historians and novelists have written of demoralized passengers, crewmembers struggling valiantly to push boats uphill…
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The Lusitania : Part 7 : Passengers of Distinction

Stories of some notable Lusitania passengers. Photograph taken 24th April 1915 showing final configuration of the boat deck Douglas Hertz, Lusitania survivor, may well have led the most colorful post-disaster lives of any of the…
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The Lusitania : Part 8 : A Hint of Scandal

Scandalous stories The sinking of the Lusitania had the undesired effect of laying bare the personal lives of those on board. Whether it was having to make one’s financial status public before the Relief Committee, or having to return…
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The Lusitania : Part 9 : Earlier Voyages

Lusitania, Eluding Enemy Nears Port... The general perception of the events leading up to May 7, 1915 is of a relatively normal service life suddenly disrupted by the famous German newspaper warning, after which came the disaster. Some…
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The Lusitania : Part 10: The Warning

THE WARNING:  “Now, if your upper classes run away like this at the first sign of danger, you can’t have any hope for the rest of your people, you know. What would you do in a time of war?” “What should she have done?” 3000…
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The Lusitania : Part 12 : Gone Forever: The Dead and the Missing

Eyes picked out by birds... An elderly lady, between 40 and 50, hair turning grey, eyes picked out by birds, face full round and freckled. Fairly stout, about 5 foot three inches, very well dressed and wearing a lot of jewelry, and had…
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The Lusitania : Part 13 : The Morning After: Post Traumatic Stress

A deck view in Second Class Jim Kalafus Collection The Lusitania survivors, with the exception of the most seriously injured, resumed their journeys, and their lives, within a few days of the disaster. They were carried by ferry…
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The Lusitania : Part 14 : Casualties of War

Sitting at Barbara’s kitchen table, on a late summer visit, we eat potato chips from a bowl she has put out. “Don’t worry about the mess, I’ll clean up!” she says: Mrs. McDermott remains proud of her energy level and would not think…
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The Lusitania : Part 15 : Happy Ending/Immortality

We part from Barbara McDermott on a happy note. We always do. She shows us a press clipping of herself as a school child, dressed in Egyptian garb at some long ago school function; a happy moment from 1926 preserved; Barbara, forever young,…
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The Lusitania : Part 16 : Appendices

Appendix A: The Unidentified # 6.  Female. 60 Years. Dark complexion. Property. - 1 plain gold wedding ring (22 carat), no initials. Grave C. 10.  Male. 35 years. Apparently a seaman. Tattooed star on back of right wrist. Grave…

Lest We Forget : The Coughlin Family

A beautiful spring day had brought together a band of people who wanted to honor the memory of a Titanic victim, Kate Buckley. Sitting under a tent, waiting for the service to start, Shelley Dziedzic began talking to a friendly-looking couple…

Lest We Forget : Albert Arthur Bestic

“To me she was my dream ship. I saw her first when in her regal beauty she sped along the surface of the Clyde upon her trials. My boyish heart went out to her in admiration.” That was Albert Arthur Bestic's first impression upon seeing…

The Price of Fame

Rose Ellen Murray, the Lusitania's Titanic Survivor Rose Ellen Murray, of Dublin and Philadelphia, became a minor celebrity after she survived the Lusitania disaster. However, her celebrity proved to be her undoing twenty years after the…

Lusitania : Final Voyage Folios

The Irish State recently acquired at auction some unique Lusitania items, including the original of the Saloon Berth List for the final, fatal voyage of May 1915. This contains first and second class cabin allocations, basic addresses, and…

Double Jeopardy - Lusitania's Unique Victim

The astonishing story of the woman whose body was twice claimed by the same German submarine. THEY pray for night, craving the hours of darkness, these passengers who dread the day. Long agonies on the exposed sea are behind them.…