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The Princess Alice Disaster.

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  • #16
    Hi all,

    Curryong:

    No, I don't believe there's ever been a full length book written on the subject. Bit of a shame really as there's ample material out there if you care to look, especially press reports and the like from the time which are fairly easily accessible now. Sadly, however, i'm not sure how well such a book would sell as the interest and knowledge of the disaster just isn't there.

    Anna:

    I have to agree with Sean that given the circumstances Liz and plenty of her fellow women were living in, it's not surprising that they would seize the opportunity to try and make a claim for monetary gain. It's possible of course that she may have had friends or distant relatives on the boat, but her claim was for immediate family. In any case it definitely would have been the talk of the town for weeks and possibly months afterward, so word would have got around.

    Cheers,
    Adam.

    Comment


    • #17
      There was a bit more to Liz' Princess Alice tale, though. Her associates reported that she blamed a speech impediment on getting kicked in the face while escaping the disaster.

      As I have said many times, her mouth appears deformed in the mortuary photo, but who knows how she was assaulted in the last hours of her life. The postmortem did not find the kind of damage she blamed on the kick in the face, though she had a number of missing teeth, on the bottom jaw if I remember correctly.

      This doesn't mean anything one way or another about proving her presence on the Princess Alice. She at least seems to have used the disaster to define parts of her life. If her tales are made up, then a question would be, what is the kernel of truth, if any? Perhaps she had a significant injury at the time of the disaster and her cleaned up version was based on the Princess Alice. For example if she was badly beaten by a man at that time, could she have covered the actual circumstances with something less embarrassing, even heroic? Wonder if she could be found in infirmary records around that time?

      I have known abused women who have done just this; covered a severe, even life threatening beating by a man, with a heroic tale.
      The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

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      • #18
        Hi Curryong,

        To my knowledge, three books have been published on the Princess Alice Disaster. They are: The Wreck of the Princess Alice, by Edwin Guest, 1878. A very rare book. The Great Thames Disaster, by Gavin Thurston, 1965. And more recently, The Princess Alice Disaster, by Joan Lock, 2013. The last two can often be had from Amazon and sometimes come up on e-bay.

        Best wishes,

        Sean.

        Comment


        • #19
          ,
          Originally posted by Anna Morris View Post
          There was a bit more to Liz' Princess Alice tale, though. Her associates reported that she blamed a speech impediment on getting kicked in the face while escaping the disaster.

          As I have said many times, her mouth appears deformed in the mortuary photo, but who knows how she was assaulted in the last hours of her life. The postmortem did not find the kind of damage she blamed on the kick in the face, though she had a number of missing teeth, on the bottom jaw if I remember correctly.

          This doesn't mean anything one way or another about proving her presence on the Princess Alice. She at least seems to have used the disaster to define parts of her life. If her tales are made up, then a question would be, what is the kernel of truth, if any? Perhaps she had a significant injury at the time of the disaster and her cleaned up version was based on the Princess Alice. For example if she was badly beaten by a man at that time, could she have covered the actual circumstances with something less embarrassing, even heroic? Wonder if she could be found in infirmary records around that time?

          I have known abused women who have done just this; covered a severe, even life threatening beating by a man, with a heroic tale.
          Hi Anna,

          The infirmary records may well be worth a search, although I'm not sure where any of the injured survivors were treated. There was a large hospital in Shooters Hill, not too far from Woolwich town centre, which has since been converted into luxury apartments. Aside, there's also a public house in Thamesmead named The Princess Alice which is located near Gallions Reach, where the fatal collision took place. I've been there a couple of times for Sunday lunch.

          Sadly it's quite feasible that Liz may have been seriously assaulted at some point in her past by a former client or partner, hence the apparent deformity and deficient teeth. The deformity could also be the result of a congenital defect; the missing teeth could be the result of poor diet and a lack of oral hygiene, hence the cachous!

          My regards,

          Sean.

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by Phillip Walton View Post
            There were many marine disasters during the LVP, its only because it happened on the River Thames that the Princess Alice disaster is notable. Many disasters occured at sea where the only indication was when a vessel failed to arrive at its destination.
            Hi Phillip,

            If I remember correctly the Princess Alice disaster was the worst inland maritime disaster of the age.

            Best wishes,

            Sean.

            Comment


            • #21
              It's always good to refresh on the research. Liz got help from her CHURCH, not necessarily a fund for the Princess Alice disaster.

              "Daily News", 6 October, 1888, Inquest testimony:

              Rev. Sven Olsson of the Swedish Church in Trinity Square testifieded that Liz had registered with the church in 1866 as a single woman. She was married to John Thomas Stride in 1869, but not in the Swedish church. Rev. Olsson had given her the hymn book in the past winter.

              "She told me that he [Stride] was drowned in the Princess Alice disaster. She was very poor then and would have been glad if any assistance. I gave her assistance about that time.

              "I do not remember having heard that she had any children. If it were true that her husband went down in the Princess, I think she would have applied for relief from the fund which was raised at the Mansion House."

              "Morning Advertiser", 4 October, 1888, Inquest testimony:

              Elizabeth Tanner testified, "She told me that she lost the roof of her mouth at the time the Princess Alice went down, and I recognize her by that. She was in the Princess Alice when it went down, and her mouth was injured."

              Michael Kidney had testified that two of Liz' children drowned in the disaster and the rest were in a school run by the Swedish church. In the other article, Rev. Olsson had testified that the church did not have any school. Kidney also said, "I have heard her say that some friends of her husband had some of the children." Then, "The deceased and her husband were employed on the Princess Alice."

              Michael Kidney testified, "She said she had nine children. and that two were drowned in the Princess Alice."

              The court had investigated this and pointed out that Liz would have been 25 years old at the time of the disaster and so it would have been unlikely she had nine children. The only case of a father and two children of proper age known to have perished in the disaster were named Bell, age 38, with two sons aged 10 and 7 years.

              Then there is speculation about whether or not Liz Stride could be another woman. "It is therefore possible that the body upon which the inquest is now being held is not that of Elizabeth Stride, but of some unknown woman."
              Last edited by Anna Morris; June 24, 2016, 07:03 PM. Reason: add
              The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

              Comment


              • #22
                There is a lot about Liz and the Princess Alice.

                "Echo", 8 October, 1888:

                "Annie Stride in the "Princess Alice,"

                With reference to the identity of Elizabeth Stride, the Woolwich newspapers of the time of the Princess Alice disaster have been referred to and it has been found that a woman of that name was a witness at the inquest, and identified the body of a man as her husband, and of two children then lying in the Woolwich Dockyard. She said she was onboard at the time, and saw them drowned her husband picking up one of the children and being drowned with it in his arms. She was saved by climbing the funnel, where she was accidentally kicked in the mouth by a retired Arsenal police inspector, who was also clinging to the top of the funnel. The husband and two children are buried in Woolwich Cemetery."

                I don't know what to make of this. ANNIE Stride? Can anyone check the Woolwich papers of the time?

                I tried to ad to the other post & it didn't take. Another article, 4 October, 1888 had Michael Kidney's and Elizabeth Tanner's testimonies. Mrs. Tanner said Liz' had had the roof of her mouth destroyed in the disaster and that she had recognized the body by that feature!

                Kidney said Liz and her husband were employed on the Princess Alice. He said two of the nine children drowned and the rest of them were in a school run by the Swedish Church. In the first article I referenced, Rev. Olsson had testified that the Swedish church did not have any school. Kidney also said that Liz had said friends of her husband had some of the children.

                Someone could write quite a dissertation on this. Even if there was an Annie Stride connected to the Princess Alice, how would that connect to Liz? Relative of John Thomas Stride? Sister-in-law? CURIOUS!
                The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

                Comment


                • #23
                  Chris Scott investigated the report from the Woolwich paper and there is a discussion at www.casebook.org/forum/messages/4921/12065.html .

                  Very interesting but no absolute solutions.
                  The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    I think it's a bit dangerous to speculate on how Liz might have received any injuries to her mouth. Living the lifestyle that she did and had done for some time before her death, it could have happened in any number of ways - she could have been in a fight, she could have been drunk and fallen over, it might have just been some sort of deformity. There's any number of possibilities. However, if she really was on the Princess Alice and got out of it with an injury to her mouth, then she was very lucky indeed! And yes, she sought financial assistance from the Swedish church in England, not through any other funds that might have been put forward to aid in the disaster recovery.

                    Sean, I shall have to look for that 2013 book you mentioned!

                    Cheers,
                    Adam.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Some of it's online :

                      https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=...20lock&f=false

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                      • #26
                        Adam is right that we have no idea how Liz' mouth may have been injured.

                        In a slightly different vein it is interesting to note the newspaper report of an Annie Stride identifying victims of the Princess Alice. At a later time Liz used the name Annie Fitzgerald when she was picked up for D & D. Later yet, at the time of her murder, newspaper reports in the U.S.--How posted one of these clips before--Liz' nickname was given as Hippy Lip Annie.

                        Annie was a very common name, like Mary Jane, but maybe there is a little pattern here that could tell us more about Liz. Her marriage to John Thomas broke down about 1879. Perhaps she had an entirely new life.
                        The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

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