Mr. James Andrew Gardner

James Gardner was a British subject returning to New Zealand from Toronto, Ontario, Canada, aboard Lusitania with his wife Annie and sons Eric and William.  They, with another son, Leonard, had been living in North America for 13 of years and were planning to establish a market garden in New Zealand.  James and Annie were lost in the Lusitania tragedy.  Eric and William survived the sinking.  Leonard had traveled to New Zealand in advance and was not on board Lusitania. James Gardner was the son of Andrew and Sarah Gardner of Dunedin, New Zealand. His father Andrew was considered "a leading light" of the Trinity Methodist Church in Dunedin. James also had a younger brother, Andrew Jr. James took after his father and became a lay preacher for the church. James attended high school in Dunedin and was a well-known resident there. He also worked as a hosiery manufacturer. James married Annie Gray of Pine Hill, New Zealand, and they lived in Dunedin where their two oldest sons, Leonard and Eric, were born. In 1902, James decided to relinquish his business and go to Toronto, where he had a stake in a costume manufacturing company. Their third and youngest son, William, would be born after their move to Canada. James' father, Andrew, passed away in May 1914. In 1915, James disposed of his stake in his costume manufacturing company. On 1 May, he sailed on the Lusitania with Annie, Eric and William, to complete arrangements for some agencies in England. Leonard had traveled to New Zealand ahead of them, where he had settled in Nelson as a fruit grower. It was the intention of the Gardners to return to New Zealand and live near Leonard. Annie fainted when the Lusitania was torpedoed and could not be revived.  She may have been the fainting woman Archie Donald helped carry from the second cabin dining saloon.  James went down with the ship with Annie. After the ship sank, Eric swam to an upturned lifeboat where he found his father, dead, lying across the bottom.  James Gardner is not on the list of recovered or identified victims. He was survived by his sons, sisters, and mother, the last of whom lived on Frederick Street in Dunedin at the time of the Lusitania sinking.

Links of interest

Lest We Forget Part 2: As the Lusitania Went Down – Encyclopedia Titanica
Contributors: Alison Glenie, New Zealand (great-niece of James Gardner) Jim Kalafus, USA Michael Poirier, USA References: Kalafus, Jim and Michael Poirier (2005).  Lest We Forget Part 2:  As the Lusitania Went Down.  ET Research. <> “The Lusitania.” Otago Daily Times. Putanga 16381. 12 Haratua 1915, page 5. PapersPast. Web. Accessed 16 May 2013. <——-10-ODT-1—-0bodley–>.

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