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TITANIC BIOGRAPHIES - APRIL
 

2014 New Gallery!
WORLD TRIBUTE TO TIANIC’S 8 HEROIC MUSICIANS
Their Lives, Loves and Legacy – An Epic Ballad of the Sea

Titanic Intermezzo
The John Frederick Preston Clarke Story
Known as FRED

  John Frederick Preston Clarke
   

The 1912 winter concert season in the Liverpool, England area was winding down and bass violist John Frederick Clarke – known to everybody as Fred - knew there would be fewer opportunities for work until the summer season began. When the chance came to go to sea as one of eight musician in the Titanic orchestra, he decided a brief interlude in his music career would be a nice change of pace. His hope was to learn from the Titanic experience and then to return for a new musical season back home.

Fred was born in 1883, the son of a 17-year-old father named John Robert Clarke and his 22-year-old wife, Ellen. Two daughters later, John deserted the family and, as the story goes, fled to America. Little Fred was farmed-out to his dad’s parents while his mother and sisters moved in with his Aunt Mary in Liverpool.

His uncle, Vasco Akeroyd, an accomplished violinist and music teacher, had set Fred on a musical path soon after the turn of the century. When Uncle Vasco founded his own Symphony Orchestra in 1909, Fred became one of his six bass players. On board Titanic, Fred was part of quintet that entertained in the first-class lounge and dining saloon, performing selections from the White Star Line songbook that ranged from classical to ragtime. Here, they were to be listened to, not watched, and were as anonymous to passengers as waiters were to those they served.

On the fifth day out their anonymity was breached when an iceberg creased Titanic’s side, and the world saw them for who they were – eight heroic musicians who sacrificed their lives playing for a doomed audience embarking on their final journey.

Only three of Titanic band members’ bodies were recovered, 28-year-old Fred Clarke’s was among them. Personal effects found with him included a diamond pin, gold watch, keys, knife, sovereign case, pocket book, memo book, 8 shillings and a gold ring. He was wearing a crucifix.

Eight Titanic musicians, eight amazing personal stories to tell, all part of The Year of the Titanic Musicians’ tribute you’ll experience in 2014 at the Titanic Museum Attraction in Branson, Missouri.



1
3rd Class Passenger
Ellen Mary Mockler
Born 1889
2
3rd Class Passenger
Thomas Kilgannon
Born 1890
3
Cook - 2nd Class
Harry Robert Stubbings
Born 1881
4
3rd Class Passenger
Laura Cribb Buzzell
Died 1974
5
2nd Class Passenger
Hilda Mary Slayter
Born 1882
6
Recruitment day for the majority of the crew. Crew begins loading coal.
7
Easter Sunday, 1912. Work stops for Easter
8
Fresh food taken on board
9
Captain Smith makes a
final inspection
10
Titanic Departs for Queenstown, Ireland approx. 8:30 p.m.
11
Titanic departs on her maiden voyage.
12
2nd Class Passenger
Annie Clemmer Funk
Born 1874
13
2nd Class Passenger
Stanley Hubert Fox
Born 1874
14
Titanic Collides With Iceberg
15
Titanic Sinks
16
2nd Class Passenger
George Frederick Sweet
Born 1897
17
2nd Class Passenger
Maude Sincock
Born 1891
18
1st Class Passenger
Maj. Arthur Godfrey Peuchen
Born 1859
19
1st Class Passenger
Charles Emil Henry Stengel
Died 1914
20
1st Class Passenger
Dr. Alice Leader
Died 1944
21
1st Class Passenger
John Borland Thayer, Sr.
Born 1862
22
2nd Class Passenger
Emily Richards
Born 1887
23
3rd Class Passenger
Amy Stanley Tanner
Died 1955
24
3rd Class Passenger
August Wennerstrom
Born 1884
25
1st Class Passenger
Constance Willard
Died 1964
26
Saloon Steward
Harry Bristow
Born 1873
27
1st Class Passenger
Norman Campbell
Chambers
Born 1884
28

3rd Class Passenger
Helene Barbara Baclini Mueller
Died 1939

29
1st Class Passenger
Margaret Welles Swift
Died 1948
30
1st Class Passenger
Elizabeth Weed Shutes
Born 1871

 
 
Titanic Branson
Ticket Information: Toll Free: 800/381-7670 • 417/334-9500
Located in the heart of Branson, 3235 76 Country Blvd & Hwy 165
www.titanicbranson.com
Titanic Pigeon Forge
Ticket Information: Toll Free: 800/381-7670 • 417/334-9500
2134 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
www.titanicpigeonforge.com