George Dunton Widener - Died on the Titanic - West Philadelphia Passenger Railway Co - Autograph Stock CertificateInv# AG1038A Stock
George D. Widener
George Dunton Widener (June 16, 1861 – April 15, 1912) was an American businessman who died in the sinking of the RMS Titanic.
He joined his father's business and eventually took over the running of the Philadelphia Traction Company, overseeing the development of cable and electric streetcar operations. He also served on the board of directors of several important area businesses, including Philadelphia Traction Co., Land Title Bank and Trust Co., Electric Storage Battery Co., and Portland Cement Co. A patron of the arts, Widener was a director of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
In 1912, Widener, his wife, and their son Harry traveled to Paris, France, with original intentions to find a chef for Widener's new Philadelphia hotel, The Ritz Carlton. The Wideners booked their return passage on RMS Titanic. After the ship struck an iceberg, Widener placed his wife and her maid Amalie Gieger in a lifeboat. The women were rescued by the steamship RMS Carpathia, but Widener and his son Harry and their valet Edwin Keeping perished on the Titanic. The bodies of the father and son, if recovered, were not identified.
- Harry Elkins Widener (1885–1912), who died aboard the Titanic.
- George Dunton Widener Jr. (1889–1971), who married Jessie Sloane Dodge (1883–1968) in 1917.
- Eleanor Widener (1891–1966), who married Fitz Eugene Dixon on June 19, 1912. Eleanor sued Dixon for divorce in 1936.
After Widener and his son's death aboard the Titanic, a memorial service was held at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, where stained glass windows were dedicated in their memory.
Widener had commissioned Horace Trumbauer to design and oversee construction of Miramar, a 30,000-square-foot (2,800 m2) French neoclassical-style mansion bordering Bellevue Avenue on Aquidneck Island at Newport, Rhode Island. Intended as a summer home, it was still in the design stage at the time of his death.
The West Philadelphia Passenger Railway was an early commuter rail that opened on July 2, 1858. Initially tracks ran from 3rd Street to 41st street along Market Street. Tracks ran over the Permanent Bridge that was completed in 1887. Passengers were transported by "horse-drawn omnibuses". The railway was the second street railway to be chartered in Philadelphia when it was chartered on April 28, 1857. Portions of the railway leading to Darby followed a route similar to that of SEPTA's Route 11 today. People of color were not allowed to use the railways until an Act of the Pennsylvania General Assembly in 1867; however, they were permitted to stand on the platform with the driver.
A stock certificate is issued by businesses, usually companies. A stock is part of the permanent finance of a business. Normally, they are never repaid, and the investor can recover his/her money only by selling to another investor. Most stocks, or also called shares, earn dividends, at the business's discretion, depending on how well it has traded. A stockholder or shareholder is a part-owner of the business that issued the stock certificates.