Jack Thayer was just 17 years old when he boarded the Titanic with his parents. After the ship hit an iceberg, Jack saw ice on the deck and alerted his parents. They donned life jackets, but they lost contact with each other in the crowd. His mother boarded a lifeboat and lived. His father likely died because he was denied access to a lifeboat. The rule was women and children first, and there were not enough lifeboats. Jack graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and then worked in banking. In 1940 he published a pamphlet called the Sinking of the SS Titanic describing his experience. Jack married Lois Cassatt, and they had six children. Two of his sons served in WWII. In 1943 his son Edward, a bomber pilot was killed in the Pacific Theater. Jack᾽s mother, Marian, died on April 14, 1944, the 32nd anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic.
Jack Thayer was turned away from boarding a lifeboat because he was considered a man. He jumped into the frigid water as the Titanic was sinking. Too cold and exhausted to save himself, Jack was pulled out of the water by men perched on an overturned lifeboat. Only 40 people of the 1,503 who went into the water survived. The 666 other survivors lived because they stayed warm and dry by boarding lifeboats.
This Jack Thayer mug is part of our history mug series profiling the many unique individuals who shaped our world through their actions.
The biographical History Mugs were created to teach and inspire individuals to learn about our diverse and interesting history. The biographies were researched and written by history enthusiast, Robert Compton. He colorized most of the historic photos and images used on the mugs, which were originally black and white or sepia tone. The images and biographies are imprinted on mugs at his studio in rural Vermont.
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