Historical records matching Eleanor Ileen Johnson
About Eleanor Ileen Johnson
- Name: Miss Eleanor Ileen Johnson
- Born: Friday 23rd September 1910
- Age: 1 years
- Last Residence: in St. Charles
- 3rd Class passenger
- First Embarked: Southampton on Wednesday 10th April 1912
- Ticket No. 347742 , £11 2s 8d
- Destination: St. Charles
- Rescued (boat 15)
- Disembarked Carpathia: New York City on Thursday 18th April 1912
- Died: Saturday 7th March 1998
Miss Eleanor Ileen Johnson, 1, was born 23 August 1910 the daughter of Oskar Walter Johnson and Alice Wilhelmina Backberg. She boarded the Titanic at Southampton with her mother and brother Harold Theodor.
They were probably rescued in lifeboat 15.
In later years Eleanor worked at the Elgin Watch Company, she later became a telephone operator until retiring in 1962. She was married to Delbert Shuman and they had one son, Earl.
Eleanor Shuman (née Johnson) died 7 March 1998. Travelling Companions (on same ticket) Mrs Elisabeth Vilhelmina Johnson Master Harold Theodor Johnson References and Sources Claes-Göran Wetterholm (1988, 1996, 1999) Titanic. Prisma, Stockholm. ISBN 91 518 3644 0 Boston Globe Obituary, March 1998 Chicago Sun Times Obituary, March 1998 Chicago Tribune Obituary, March 1998 Newark Star Ledger Obituary, March 1998 San Diego Union Tribune Obituary, March 1998
- Arthur Merchant, USA
- Becky Ross, USA
- Jon Neville, USA
- Leif Snellman, Finland
Eleanor Shuman, 87, Passenger on the Titanic By ROBERT McG. THOMAS Jr.
Eleanor Shuman, who was too young to remember more than the screams but recalled them vividly for more than 85 years, died on Saturday at a hospital near her home in Elgin, Ill. She was 87 and one of the last half-dozen survivors of the sinking of the Titanic.
Mrs. Shuman, whose original name was Johnson, was just 18 months old when the Titanic went down in the early hours of April 15, 1912, with the loss of more than 1,500 lives, but as one of 705 survivors, she had a tale to tell and told it often over the years.
For the most part, Mrs. Shuman lived a fairly ordinary life in the Chicago suburbs. A native of St. Charles, Ill., where her father, Oscar Johnson, was a newspaper editor, she moved to nearby Elgin, working for a while at the Elgin Watch Company before becoming a telephone operator until she retired in 1962. Her husband, Delbert Shuman, an International Harvester engineer, died in 1981. They had been married for 47 years.
Through it all Mrs. Shuman kept her memories of the Titanic alive. The living room of her tidy little house in Elgin had what she called her Titanic Corner, including books, a painting of the Titanic and a photograph showing her and her older brother, Harold, at the New York premiere of the Titanic movie A Night to Remember in 1958.
More recently Mrs. Shuman had acquired other souvenirs, photographs showing her and James Cameron, the director of the current hit movie Titanic, at the Chicago premiere last December.
As the only Titanic survivor Mr. Cameron met, Mrs. Shuman got royal treatment. She saw the movie three times, first at a screening along with the television movie critics Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert, then at the premiere and later at a theater in Elgin. She said she cried each time.
The movie and the attendant publicity made Mrs. Shuman such a sought-after celebrity that she changed her telephone number to an unlisted one after getting as many as 10 calls a day from people wanting to hear her recollections about the Titanic or simply to speak with someone who had survived the disaster.
But she recalled very little about the fateful night. Most of the details she related over the years came from her mother, Alice, but Mrs. Shuman insisted she recalled the screams and the sight from a great height of a sea of hands reaching up for her from a lifeboat below.
As Mrs. Shuman recounted it, the voyage on the Titanic came about by accident. She, her mother and her 4-year-old brother, Harold, had gone to Finland to visit her mother's dying father and other relatives and were on their way back to the United States when they stopped over in England and discovered that their passage on another ship had been canceled because of a coal miners' strike.
Learning that the Titanic had room, the family, along with two teen-age girls they had met in Sweden, hopped a boat-train to Southampton and bought third-class tickets just hours before the Titanic sailed.
Drawing on her mother's account, Mrs. Shuman recalled that at first the disaster had provided a moment of recreation for the third-class passengers.
When the Titanic struck the iceberg, she said, tons of ice went on the deck, right outside their cabin door. As her mother, the Swedish girls and others playfully kicked the ice around, an officer shooed them back into their cabins, saying the ship would get underway shortly.
A little later, she said, the steward who had waited on them in the dining room and apparently taken a liking to the little group knocked on their door and escorted them to the boat deck.
Her mother, carrying her daughter in her arms, was helped into a lifeboat, and little Harold, who had been carried to the deck by one of the Swedish girls, was dropped down into the boat after them. The other Swedish girl had gotten into another lifeboat and survived, she said, but the one who had been holding her brother went down with the ship.
Theirs, she said, was the last lifeboat to leave the Titanic. Five hours later they were picked up by the ship Carpathia and taken to New York.
Until a few years ago when she visited her son, then living in Florida, Mrs. Shuman had not seen the Atlantic since 1912. In 1996 she sailed back to the site of the disaster for a memorial service.
With Mrs. Shuman's death, there are now five known living Titanic survivors. Karen Kamuda of the Titanic Historical Society in Indian Orchard, Mass., said they are Barbara West and Millzina Dean of England; Michael Navratil of France; and Lillian Asplund and Winnifred Tongerloo of the United States.
Mrs. Shuman, whose brother died in 1968, is survived by a son, Earl, of St. Charles, Ill., two sisters, Irene Van Thournout of St. Charles and Esther Rudder of Connecticut, and two grandchildren.
Photo: Eleanor Shuman. (Associated Press, 1996)