When the Titanic sank, there was both an outpouring of grief and a great public fascination with the passengers.
Only a third of those on board the great ship were rescued. Fifteen hundred people died in the shipwreck.
In Winnipeg, as in other major cities, the stories dominated the headlines for days after the sinking, with reporters scrambling to tell stories of every local connection they could find.
So it was that Winnipeg readers had great interest in a Montreal family, the Allisons. Hudson Allison had lived in Winnipeg for two years.
He lived at the corner of Sherbrook and Westminster and had been friends with fellow Winnipeg Titanic passengers, Mark Fortune, and Thompson Beattie. Hudson Allison was well known and highly regarded in Winnipeg. He had worked as a financier, and was a great supporter of the Broadway Methodist Church
When he married, Hudson Allison and his wife, Bess Waldo Daniels, made their home in Montreal. Prior to traveling on the Titanic they were on an extended holiday in Europe. They were traveling with their two children, Lorraine, and baby Trevor, and were returning to their home on Rosyln Avenue in Westmount, Quebec.
Trevor, survived the sinking. He was in the arms of his newly hired nanny, Alice Cleaver. They were first class passengers and had been ushered to the lifeboats in plenty of time for Bess and her daughter to make their escape.
But, Bess had apparently panicked when she couldn’t find her baby son. She dragged her young daughter Lorraine out of the lifeboat and together with her husband, went in search of Trevor. By this time, the nanny was already away from the ship with the baby.
The following story about the family appeared in the Winnipeg Telegram on April 19, 1912, and is transcribed below.
Among the passengers of the Titanic are Mr. and Mrs. Hudson J. Allison and child. Mr. Allison and his family were residents of Winnipeg for a year, leaving here a little over two years ago to reside in Montreal. Mr. Allison and his wife and two children were returning from England and are among the list of missing. He is one junior member of the firm of Johns, McConnell and Allison, of Montreal, financial agents and was in Winnipeg in the interests of the firm.
While living here he resided on the corner of Sherbrook and Westminster Street. He was a prominent member of the Broadway Methodist Church and was one of the original contributors to the building fund, always taking an active interest in church affairs.
He is a nephew of G.F. Johnston of Montreal, senior member of the firm, and Mrs. Daniel, whose name appears in the list of those saved was his mother-in-law and lived with them in Winnipeg for several months previous to their http://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/ to Montreal.
Mr. Allison is well-known in the city and has a large number of personal friends. His interests in the west are great, he personally holding a lot of property. The firm also holds large timber limits and farm properties.
For more information about passengers on the Titanic, please see the Encyclopedia Titanica website. For stories about Canadians on the Titanic, see Alan Hustak’s excellent book.