Titanic Jewelry Collection, Round And Princess Cut White Man-made Crystal, Silver Tone Cuff Links. Measures Approximately 5/8"l X 5/8"w.
John Jacob, affectionately known as JJ, Astor IV was born July 13, 1864 into one of America?s wealthiest and most prestigious families. He was son of William Astor and great-grandson of John Jacob Astor the fur trader. John graduated Harvard, managed the family fortune, traveled extensively abroad, and was a published author, respected inventor and a lieutenant colonel in the US volunteers during the Spanish-American War. Estimated to be worth $100 million dollars, the Astor family owned most of Manhattan in New York City. Not one of the idle rich, Astor was a shrewd real estate mogul whose other accomplishments included:building of the Astor Hotel in NYC, later became the landmark, Waldorf-Astoria, patented a turbine engine, a bicycle brake, a pneumatic road-paver and a system for producing gas from organic material. He also wrote a science-fiction novel about extraterrestrial life on Saturn and Jupiter. On 1 May 1891 Astor was married to Ava, daughter of Edward Shippen Willing of Philadelphia . Together they had a son and one daughter. However, in 1909 Astor divorced Ava and, two years later, married eighteen-year-old Madeleine Force (who was a year younger than his son Vincent). Public opinion was divided concerning the respectability of Astor's actions, and the newlyweds decided to winter abroad in order to let the gossip die down at home. Mr and Mrs Astor travelled to Egypt and Paris and, in the spring of 1912, decided to return to America as First Class passengers on board the brand new Titanic . After the accident Astor left his suite to investigate, he quickly returned and reported to his wife that the ship had struck ice. He reassured her that the damage did not appear serious. Even as the boats were loaded Astor appeared unperturbed, he ridiculed the idea of trading the solid decks of the Titanic for a small lifeboat 'we are safer here than in that little boat' . He had changed his mind by 1:45 when Second Officer Charles Lightoller arrived on A deck to finish loading Lifeboat 4 . Astor helped his wife to climb through the windows of the enclosed promenade and then asked if he might join her, being as she was in 'a delicate condition'. Lightoller told him that no men could enter until all the women had been loaded. Astor stood back and just asked Lightoller which boat it was. After boat 4 was lowered at 1:55 Astor stood alone while others tried to free the remaining collapsible boats. Astor's body was recovered on Monday, April 22.
Titanic Jewelry Collection
For four magical days, the Titanic's elite passengers reveled in every modern luxury known at the time. During the early part of the 20th century, it was considered quite sophisticated for wealthy families to spend portions of their time in Europe which meant crossing the Atlantic at least once per year. Even to these jaded travelers, the Titanic ship was like no other. Not only was it the most impressive ship of its time draped in every luxury imaginable but so were its passengers. The women of the Titanic would plan for months to bring the right fashionable apparel aboard such a luxurious ship. Along with extensive outfit planning came accessorizing: large hats, mink stoles, gloves and of course, the jewelry. Jewelry of that time was depictive of the Art Nouveau and Edwardian eras. Art Nouveau jewelry was influenced by naturalism involving unusual designs within a symmetrical frame often encompassing foliage, leaves, enamel, pearls, crystals and gemstones. Edwardian designs included more formal jewelry: tiaras, brooches, rings, pendants, earrings, bracelets and sautoir necklaces. Many were set with brilliant gemstones, including diamonds, crystals and of course, pearl.