RMS Titanic Disaster and the Venetia

Captain and crew of the Venetia collecting money for this disaster

John Stewart

Captain and Crew of the Venitia collecting money for the Titanic disaster
Picture courtesy of the Nottage Marine Institute

This photograph shows the Captain and crew of the steam yacht Venetia, collecting for the Titanic disaster in 1912 outside the Grosvenor Hotel in Maldon Road, Colchester.

Mr A.K. Barlow and other prominent Wivenhoe gentlemen formed a committee to raise money for the victims of the sinking and their dependents.  Bearing in mind that the crew members’ families would have been left without a breadwinner in the days before Social Security, there would have been a dire need for some sort of relief.  The minute book of the committee which was set up to run the fund is now in the possession of the Nottage Maritime Institute.

In 1915, the Venetia was requisitioned for the First World War, and most of her crew, some of whom were Wivenhoe men. volunteered to go with her.

Click on image for super size.

See also:- The steam yacht Venetia.

This page was added on 20/03/2015.

Comments about this page

  • Following on from the above comment.

    William Rudolph was baptised at Holy Trinity, Vauxhall Bridge Road in May 1912, a mere three weeks after the loss of the Titanic. The register entry just gives his father’s details as ‘Waiter deceased’. When Beatrice was baptised at the same church in December 1912 her father’s details read ‘Waiter on S S Titanic deceased’. Records show that the family benefited from the Titanic Fund for a number of years.

    Rudolph changed his name by deed poll to Harlow, his mother’s maiden name, during WW2. It is a perhaps sad reflection that to have an Italian name in London at that time was not a good thing while when he was born his connection to an Italian waiter was worthy of note.

    By Mary Norris (09/04/2018)
  • Understandable that Wivenhoe residents would collect for victims of the Titanic disaster, given that so many were Mariners; there may also have been an added incentive (and poignancy) in that one of the widows was born here.

    Ethel May Harlow was born in 1878, the youngest daughter of Captain William Charles Harlow (1839-1890) and Sarah Ann (nee Hazell) (1841-1893). The family are shown on the 1881 Census as living on The High Street, in 1891 Sarah Ann (now widowed) is again shown on the High Street next door to Winifred Cottage.

    Ethel had lost both of her parents by the age of fifteen; by 1901 she was living in Earls Court, London, working as a nurse. In 1909 Ethel married Giovanni Giuseppe Emilio Saccaggi, an Italian Hotel Waiter, the couple are shown on the 1911 Census living at 22 Ponsonby Place, Westminster by which time they had a one year old son. William Rudolph (Rodolpho).

    Giovanni worked on RMS Olympic before transferring to her sister ship RMS Titanic on 6 April 1912, he came aboard 4 days later on Wednesday 10th April for her maiden voyage.

    Giovanni’s body was never recovered, or at least was never identified.

    Ethel was pregnant at the time, she would give birth to a daughter, Beatrice Grace on 29 November. Ethel remained a widow for 35 years and died in East Ham in 1947, William Rudolph in 1992 and Beatrice Grace in 1995.


    By Michael Smither (11/11/2017)

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