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The American Connection and beyond...

Given below are several of the many e-mails I have received from people across the globe, who seem to have claims to being descendents of the Stead family of which William Thomas Stead, the journalist who was with the Titanic when she went down in the Atlantic was part.

For these writers, I thank them with all my heart. If anyone has any more information to add to these letters, I would be happy to hear from you and with your permission, add them to this page.

As I have said on many occasions, please give as much detail as is possible, names, dates, times or whatever. No family tree can be ever complete but even the thought of being related to such a great person, whoever they may be, is very important.

This is a message on behalf of Elizabeth Galloway (nee Stead).

We are in the process of trying to trace our family tree and think that the father of my great-grandfather (Thomas William Stead born 1854) could have been John Stead (born 1808) who is on your family tree.

We are in the process of acquiring Thomas's birth certificate.

Do you have any information on the family of John Stead or his marriage ?

Thank You

E Galloway

Chester-le-Street, England.


My name is Robert William Stead. I live in Dearborn, Michigan (USA)-born 6/27/1950. My aunt Gladys Stead (who died 3 months before I was born) claimed that we were related to William Thomas Stead-but I have no proof. Gladys was quite heavily into spiritism, so I wouldn't be surprised if she got her information during a seance. If so, I don't considered that too reliable.

Our line of Stead's come from one James Henry Stead who left England in the 1850's. He was a wool dyer who lived in the Huddersfield area (northern England).

The story goes that as a common laborer he was required to urinate in a designated area. The proprietor used human urine to set the dye in the wool. One day he needed to urinate badly and decided to exercise his freedom. He was caught, fired, and came to America looking for work. James Henry Stead married in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Lydia Hoyle (second generation from England and daughter of William and Hannah Hoyle). James and Lydia bore a son named Harry who bore a son named Vernon Andrew who bore a son named Jack William who bore me, Robert William. I am the youngest of 5 children, 3 girls--2 boys.

If you have any information regarding a relationship between the Stead's of the Huddersfield England area and William T Stead, I would greatly appreciate it. Many of my friends have told me that I look like William T.


I may be a long-lost relative. My father Thomas James Stead who is now deceased often told me as a child that we had a relative who died on the Titanic and that he was a journalist. I started "poking" around on the internet at the university (where I am a professor) and came across your site on the web.

My Grandmother Marguaret Stead and Grandfather Thomas Allen Stead were both from Yorkshire (Leeds) (as was his father Thomas Ballen Stead).They were both from large families (13 & 12 children respectively). They came to the United States around 1915 and settled in Toledo, Ohio. They were planning to go on to Australia but with the birth of my father decided not to go.

My Grandmother's sister Beatrix who had married my Grandfather's brother Fred also came to Toledo to settle. T.B. Stead owned some sort of plumbing supply business near Leeds. T.A. Stead (died 1931) went to art college in London and was a professional Lithographer. T.J. Stead (1917-1995) owned an advertising agency in Toledo and was a renowned technical illustrator. T.D. Stead (1945 - )(me) College Art Dept. Chairperson T.R. Stead my son (11) pianist & Taekwondo blackbelt My father told me I was the 8th Thomas Stead but that he only knew the names back to T.B. Stead. I really do not know if the story is true, but I heard it from two generations.

Thomas D. Stead


My name is Marjorie MacMahon-Hills and my great grand uncle is W.T.Stead. I am a teacher in California and have been traveling to England for the last few summers trying to do family research (in both England and Ireland).

Two summers ago my husband, John, and I uncovered the original old newspaper volume (in York) which gave a full page description of the life of W.T.Stead. There was also a beautiful description of his memorial service at Westminister Chapel where the church was filled capacity (2,500). This summer we visited the elegant Chapel and tried to visualize the dignitaries present and the wonderful words of praise that were spoken.

The search has brought me closer to the sense of the life and times that made my ancestor such a leader of men. W.T. Stead's father, Rev. William Stead was my great, great grandfather and his mother was Isabella Jobson, my great, great grandmother.

When W.T. was asked who influenced him most in his life, he replied, "My father and myself". He must have been a self starter.

I have recently met Richard Clegg, a newly established attorney in London. He was kind enough to research the Internet and uncovered your address as one interested in the life of W. T. Stead. My grandmother was Stead's favorite niece. She always spoke of him to my mother with great affection. My grandmother's father was John Wilson Stead, W. T. Stead's brother.

If you have any further information about his children and their families, I would certainly like to be apprised of it. I understand there is to be a conference on July 2-5, 1999 in the area of Wallsend and Darlington in northern England, coordinated by Mr. John Stephenson: Oakfield Gardens, Wallsend, Tyne and Wear, England, NE 28 8AR.

Page One - Introduction

Page Two - Pictures

Page Three - Family History

Page Four - WT Stead's TimeLine

Page Five - His interest in Spiritualism

Page Six - Daily Paper