Seven Famous People Who Missed the Titanic

The notables who planned to sail on the fateful voyage included a world-famous novelist, a radio pioneer and America’s biggest tycoons

(AP Photo/The Hershey Library via the Patriot-News.)

John R. Mott

John R. Mott
(© Bettmann/CORBIS)

Though perhaps less well known today than the others on our list, Mott was an influential evangelist and longtime YMCA official, who shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 1946. He and a colleague were supposedly offered free passage on the Titanic by a White Star Line official interested in their work but declined and instead took the more humble liner Lapland. According to a biography by C. Howard Hopkins, when they reached New York and heard about the disaster, “It is said that the two men looked at each other and one voiced their common thought: ‘The Good Lord must have more work for us to do.’ ”

About Greg Daugherty
Greg Daugherty

Greg Daugherty is a magazine editor and writer as well as a frequent contributor to Smithsonian.com. His books include You Can Write for Magazines.

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