Sunday, February 16, 2014

Titanic Widow Gives Clew To Great Jewel Theft

The Independent (St.Petersburg, Florida)
Tuesday, Aug. 5,1913    Page Six

                                           Titanic Widow Gives Clew To Great Jewel Theft

Newport, Aug. 4---Mrs. Daniel Marvin, a fashionable young widow, whose husband lost his life in the Titanic disaster, has given the police an important clew that may aid them in tracing (sic) down the thieves who perpetrated the robbery of $125,000 worth of gems from the boudoir of Mrs. Charles G. Ramsey. Mrs. Marvin was returning in her automobile from a marshmellow bake, and while spinning along Ford road she saw a machine standing near Gunning Rock Cottage, the place occupied by Mrs. Ramsey, who is the daughter of the late E.H. Harriman. In the machine was a strange woman, and as Mrs. Marvin's auto drew close by two men rushed up, jumped into the car with the woman and sped away at breakneck speed. Mrs. Marvin was able to describe the car and its occupant, but the police refuse to state whether he (sic) had noticed the license number on the rear of the supposed thieves' machine.


New York Times
Aug. 1, 1912
                                       Trail Gem Suspect to Big Hotel Here

                                           Burns Detective After Clue to
                                           the Stolen Jewels of Mrs. Rumsey]
                                           and Mrs. Hanan
                                           Haul Worth Over $250,000
                                     "Gentleman Burglar" sought---M.s.
                                        Hanan won't suspect servants---
                                        Humors of Amateur Sleuthing
                                       Special to the New York Times
NARRAGANSETT PIER, R. I., July 31---The search for the thieves who rifled the jewel collections of Mrs. C.C. Rumsey and Mrs. John H. Hanan continued unsuccessfully today, though the detectives sent here by the different agencies picked up a thread that took them out of town. Out of the many shadowy rumors current at the Pier tonight is a fairly definite one about a possible clue followed. It is understood here that one of the Burns detectives has shadowed a man to one of the big hotels in Forty-second Street, New York City.
Usually several days after such a robbery or series of robberies it is found that the loss has been overestimated. The reverse seems true in the Narragansett cases, for it now seems probable that thieves made way with gems worth more than a quarter of a million dollars. An extra necklace is missing from the Rumsey collection, a rope of pearls which cost in the neighborhood of $40,000 and which brings the total theft from the Gunning Rock cottage to $115,000.The omission of this second necklace from the list as originally published was not due to any attempt to conceal its loss---nor was it due as was rumored here for a while, to a second theft in the same house. The first publication of the loss, it will be remembered, was made from New York by C.C.Tegethoff, the representative of Mrs. Harriman in the administration of the Harriman estate, and before coming to Narragansett Pier he had not known that the second necklace was missing.
The impression is growing here that the thief was of the type known as "gentleman burglar", or, more picturesquely, as "Raffles."
"I would be willing to wager," said one of the Burns men today, "that the man, or possibly the woman, who went into the Rumsey house and stole those jewels was in evening clothes."
The impression is growing too that the two robberies were done by members of a band of skilled gem thieves. It is regarded as inconceivable that a mere sneak-thief, having accomplished so rich a haul at the Hanan home on Friday night, would have risked another twenty-four hours in Narragansett Pier to rob the Rumsey cottage. Closer study of the Hanan case suggests less of hurry and more of skill than it did at first. It has been noticed that most of the jewels that were passed by for no apparent reason were of a distinctive nature difficult to efface in the markets where stolen jewels are bought.
Mrs. Hanan was told to-night that in the minds of some of the detectives suspicion was narrowing down to one her twenty-two servants, but she continued to express confidence in them all.
"It would almost destroy my faith in human nature" she observed.
She added that if one of her household were found guilty, and were to surrender the plunder, she would let him or her take the next train out of town unmolested. The servants are all restive under the searchlight, and Mrs. Hanan has lamented their demoralization more than the loss of her gems.
The summer colonists whose jewels have been safely stored in vaults elsewhere are in a position to enjoy the amusing features of the thief hunt.
Besides the men from the three or four private agencies engaged, the Pier is overrun with amateur and independent detectives, all following the most amusing clues, all extraordinarily mysterious and many of them reduced to the point of soliciting on the street an opportunity to be put to work on the cases. The horde of detectives alone means many strangers in town and many are unknown to each other. The gayety of the Pier was added to measurably to-day by the discovery that two detectives from rival agencies had been shadowing each other all day long.
One of those who saw the automobile which detectives believe figured in the Rumsey robbery, was Mrs. Daniel Marvin, the young widiow of a Titanic victim, who is now staying with her aunt, Mrs. Wheelock, in a cottage near the Rumseys. Mrs. Marvin gave a marshmallow roast on the rocks in front of the cottage last Saturday night, and she and her party were returning from the shore shortly before midnight when they came upon an automobile standing unlighted in the fork of the road.
The machine was a long gray touring car. A woman who was sitting in the back seat was the only occupant, but two men appeared and hastily climbed into the car. One of the Marvin party shouted, "Who are you?" and received the answer in a gruff voice, "None of your business." as the automobile shot down the road.

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