This past October I went to a postcard show near my area. On the way home, I stopped by a consignment shop to see if I could continue my shopping streak and find anything else. I asked the owner if she had postcards and there were some in a bowl. Nothing special. Then a man who was friends with her told me he had just gotten a stack of cards at an estate sale that were all sent to Lillian Bentham, a survivor of the Titanic. Since the Titanic is one of my favorite things in history, of course I was interested!
I bought them for the amazing price of: $25!!! There were a total of 34 cards, mostly New York views. There was three of the same exact card of the Plattsburg NY D’Youville Academy, so I sold two of them. The two I sold together totaled $40. So I covered my costs, made a profit, and get to enjoy all the cards by only selling 2 duplicates.
Encyclopedia Titanica has information about Lillian along with a picture of her. Here is what it says: “Miss Lillian W. Bentham, 19, was born in Holley, N. Y. Her mother was Mary J. Bentham, her father had died prior to 1912.
Lillian had been one of a party of 11 visting Europe. The group included her godfather William J. Downton, Peter David McKane, Peter Renouf, Lillian Renouf, Clifford Jefferys, Ernest Jefferys, Herbert Denbury and Emily Rugg.
Whilst she was away her family moved to Rochester, N. Y.
Lillian boarded the Titanic at Southampton as a second class passenger. She held ticket number 28404, price: £13.
After the collision on 14 April 1912 Lillian did not think the Titanic would sink even though she knew that the passengers were being taken off in lifeboats. Only when one of her party, Herbert Denbury, rushed to her stateroom and told her to hurry on deck did she accept the seriousness of the situation.
Miss Bentham was rescued in lifeboat 12. She recalled seeing the ship break in two as it sank.
Her mother could not come to meet her off the Carpathia as her brother had contracted Typhoid fever, but eight friends did come, among them the widow of William Downton.
Lillian married Mr John Black in 1918. They lived at 11 Kay Terrace, Rochester, N. Y.”