Survivor of the Titanic a Paarl Resident

Last week I came across an article about the only South African that survived the sinking of the Titanic was a resident of Paarl, Mr. Argon Rothenaigner.

There was a lot of confusion and questions around the date of the article.

One of my followers referred me to original article which was dated the 23 November 1970.

This therefore gives us a good timleline of Mr Rothenaiger’s age and date of death.

In 1969 Mr Argon Rothenaignar was 78 years old, which means he was 21 years old when the ship sank after colliding with an iceberg in 1912.

Here is the original article:

A German immigrant to South Africa who spent 12 years in internment camps in South Africa during World Wars I and II, and who is believed to be the only survivor in South Africa of the sinking of the Titanic in 1912, died at his home at 2 Mernoleon Street, Paarl, at the age of 79.

He was Mr. Argon Rothenaigner, who was will known in the tailoring trade here before he retired in 1967.

Mr. Rothenaigner had narrow escapes as a German soldier during the South West African campaign in 1914 and 1915.

He miraculously escaped death when he was a steward on the ill-fated ship, the Titanic, which sank in 1912 drowning more than 1 000 passengers and crew.

When the ship went down, he jumped into the sea in a lifebelt and drifted for 10 hours before he was picked up by rescue boats. He was one of the few survivors.

Mr. Rothenaigner was taken as a prisoner of war by South African forces in S.W.A. during 1915 and spent five years in internment camps in South Africa. After the war her returned to Germany, but immigrated to South Africa in 1938. He was again interned during World War II, but released in 1947.

He leaves a wife in Paarl, and a daughter from a previous marriage in Switzerland.

source: Cape Argus, 23 November 1970, Pg. 20

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