Mrs Frederick Charles Douglas

Mary Douglas
(Courtesy: Alan Hustak, Canada)

Mrs Frederick Charles Douglas (Mary Hélène Jane "Suzette" Baxter), 27, was born in Montreal 4 April 1885, the daughter of a wealthy diamond merchant and banker. She was raised in the affluent Square Mile district of the city, where everyone called her by the nickname 'Zette. When she was 24 she married Fred Charles Douglas, a medical doctor. 'Zette's mother financed a medical clinic on St. Famille St., so Douglas could go into business for himself, and she paid for his post graduate studies in London in 1910. Her interference caused problems in the marriage. In the spring of 1911, Zette decided, against her husband's wishes, to go to Europe with her mother and her younger brother Quigg.

She boarded the Titanic at Cherbourg as a first class passenger and shared cabin B-60 (?58) with her mother Hélène. She survived the sinking in lifeboat 6 but when she returned to Montreal she contracted a mild case of polio and needed a leg brace to get around. Her husband became an alcoholic and lost his hospital privileges and eventually moved to Sherbrooke, Quebec. After her mother died in 1923, Zette Baxter left her husband and went to live with a Montreal stockbroker, Edgar Cole Richardson.

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Suzette Richardson in 1949
Courtesy: Phillip Gowan, USA

In the early 1930's they moved to Redlands, California, to a house at 715 West Clark St. There, according to her nephew, she lived, surrounded by "mothballs and memories," until her death there on 31 December 1954.