Cosmo Duff Gordon is best known for surviving the sinking of the Titanic in 1912, along with his wife and her secretary, Laura Mabel Francatelli. Rumours that the Duff Gordons bribed the crew in their lifeboat not to rescue people in the water threatened their reputations, but the British Board of Trade's Inquiry into the disaster cleared them of any wrongdoing and a letter written by the secretary further clears their name
Titanic survivor's apron....Laura Mabel Francatelli was the personal maid and secretary to the famous couturier 'Lucillle', or Lady Lucy Duff Gordon, the wife of wealthy landowner Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon. When the disaster struck Miss Francatelli and her employers were among the 12 survivors placed in Emergency Lifeboat 1, notoriously dubbed the 'millionaires boat' by the press.
Sir Cosmos Duff Gordon was a wealthy businessman. He and his wife, Lucy Duff Gordon, traveled on Titanic under the name "Morgan" and slept in different cabins. They were attending to a secret business matter. Sir Cosmos was one of a few men to survive the sinking. With only twelve people in the lifeboat, he was rumored to have bribed the crewman not to return for survivors. He faced ridicule for the rest of his life in England.