31 July 2009

The Titanic, A Guggenheim Tragedy

The 77th Edition of COG is all about Disasters.

I had posted previously about my SIL's family connection to the Sinking of the Titanic. Well as it happens, she has yet another family connection to this same disaster. First let me define the relationship for you. SIL's 2nd great grandfather is David Walter. David has a brother - Moritz Walter who is married to Sophie Seligman. Sophie's 1st cousin is Florette Seligman who is married to Benjamin Guggenheim. I know, a bit of a stretch, but it IS a definite family connection.

Benjamin Guggenheim was a passenger on the ill-fated luxury liner. When he learned that the ship was going down, Benjamin and his valet Victor Giglio changed out of their jammies and into their tuxedos. They then made topside where Guggenheim tells a steward named Henry Etches,

"We've dressed in our best, and are prepared to go down like gentlemen. Tell my wife I did my best in doing my duty."

Last sited, Benjamin and his valet were sitting in chairs on the deck, sipping brandy and smoking cigars. His body was never recovered.

Leontine Aubert

Benjamin's last words to be delivered to his wife were a small consolation to her. You see, accompanying Benjamin on the voyage was his mistress, a French singer Leontine Aubert. Ah, the lives those Guggenheims led back then . . . but those are for another day.

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