Here is all I have discovered, so far, about my uncle Eliezer Gilinsky.
He is pictured here in 1912 with his brothers Louis (on the left) and David
My cousin Ziska Shapiro, Nathan's younger brother, in 1998 told the story
about Eliezer as he knew it.
About Uncle Leyzer And That Iceberg
My cousin Nathan Shapiro, also a nephew of Eliezer, said in 1989.
"Eliezer, also known as Lazar or Leslie, was not married. He was in England for a short time, but he wanted to go to the USA on the Titanic. It would have been very expensive, but he was a specialist in machinery so he was taken on as a reserve engineer and given a cheap passage. Unfortunately he died when the Titanic sank. He was one of 19 people who saved themselves on an ice floe, but they were not rescued and froze to death. My grandmother used to say that she heard about the Titanic disaster when she was going on the train from Vilna to Ignalina, and the names were given in the newspaper, and she fainted on the train."
The records from the cable ship Mackay Bennett which was chartered by the
White Star Line to search for the Titanic's victims shew that Eliezer's body
was amongst the first batch to be recovered and was numbered as 47. He was
buried at sea. Eliezer was described thus:-
No. 47. male. Estimated age 30. Hair: dark. Clothing:- grey coat, vest and pants, green shirt. Effects:- photographs, tickets, ticket 1828 transportation order New York to Chicago, inspection card, purse containing $5 bill, 60 cents, £12 in gold, 4 pence, baggage insurance certificate No 73941 (B. Ins. Ass. Ltd.), primer on English language, keys, two pencils, third class ticket Southampton to New York - No. 14973 and miscellaneous papers.
You can see a newspaper article of April 22 1912 that mentions him. The article confusingly gives the impression that the body was being brought back for burial. His last reported address was 36 Glancynon Terrace, Abercynon, South Wales. This was his brother David's house. He was, according to the records, a 22 year old Russian born locksmith. He paid £8/1/- for his ticket, this was not a cheap fare, as Nathan said. His parents were awarded £130 compensation by the Mansion House Assistance Board.
There was an item in the local newspaper The Aberdare Leader on 4th May 1912:-
Eliezer, like most young men at that time, left home because of persecution. He would have had to serve 12 years in the Russian army. His father Shlomo served 25 years. See Military Conscription in 19th century Russia http://www.jewishgen.org/infofiles/ru-mil.txt
The initial W that the paper gave for Eliezer's first name may indicate that he had another name. Eliezer Gilinsky was born in Lithuania. His home town was Ignalina. He had one sister and four brothers. See his family tree
Encyclopedia Titanica http://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/biography/825/
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