Madeleine Force Astor
Madeleine Force Astor was an American survivor of
the Titanic disaster and wife of multimillionaire
businessman, inventor and writer, John Jacob Astor IV.
Her husband aided her aboard a lifeboat from which
she was subsequently rescued by the passenger liner
Carpathia. He later perished in the sinking of the
She led an active social life, and each of her three
marriages was to a prominent individual. Madeleine's
second husband was wealthy banker/industrialist
William K. Dick. Her final marriage was to Italian
middleweight boxer Enzo Fiermonte.
Madeleine Astor with her first husband John Jacob Astor IV
Biographical fast facts
Full or original name at birth: Madeleine Talmage Force
Date and place of birth: June 19, 1893, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.A.
Date, time, place and cause of death: March 27, 1940*,
at 7:30 p.m., Casa Invierno, Jungle Road, Palm Beach,
Florida, U.S.A. (Heart ailment)
Spouse: John Jacob Astor IV (m. September 9, 1911 - April 15, 1912) (his death)
Wedding took place at 9:55 a.m., at Beechwood Mansion,
580 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, Rhode Island, U.S.A.
Spouse: William K. Dick (m. June 22, 1916** - July 21, 1933) (divorced)
Wedding took place at 2 p.m., at St. Saviour's Episcopal Church,
Bar Harbor, Maine, U.S.A.
Spouse: Enzo Fiermonte (m. November 27, 1933 - June 11, 1938) (divorced)
Wedding took place at 5:45 p.m., in Madeleine's hospital room
at Doctors Hospital, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
Sons: John Jacob Astor VI (b. August 14, 1912, at 8:15 a.m.,
New York City, New York - d. June 26, 1992,
at 3115 Pine Tree Drive, Miami Beach, Florida)
William Force Dick (b. April 11, 1917, New York City,
New York, U.S.A. - d. December 4, 1961, Port Maria, Jamaica)
John Henry Dick (b. May 12, 1919, New York City, New York,
U.S.A. - d. September 1995)
Father: William H. Force (in the shipping business)
Mother: Katherine E. Talmage
Burial location: Trinity Cemetery, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
Error corrections or clarifications
* Madeleine Force Astor
did not die March 24th as a few sources state.
All obituaries, death announcements from the family,
and death records confirm she died the 27th.
** Her marriage to William Dick did not
take place in 1917, or 1918 as a few sources have
erroneously reported. All newspaper accounts of the
wedding appeared in the June 1916 papers.
Note that during her lifetime, Madeleine spelled
her name Madeleine Talmage Force, not
Madeleine Talmadge Force as some sources
report. Talmage is the way it was spelled on
her engagement announcements, the marriage
license, the formal marriage announcement
Col. Astor sent to the newspapers, as well
as documents relating to her survival from
the Titanic sinking and her death announcements.
"Madaline," "Madeline" and "Madelin" are a
few of the spelling variations of her name
you may encounter. As previously noted, she
spelled her first name Madeleine.
Madeleine Force was born June 19th, 1893, in
Brooklyn, New York, to William H. Force (head
of a large New York shipping firm) and Katherine
E. Talmage. She was educated in Europe and
Connecticut, and was a popular member of the
September 9th, 1911, at 9:55 a.m., Madeleine married
multimillionaire businessman, inventor and writer,
John Jacob Astor IV. The ceremony was performed by
Rev. Joseph Lambert in the white and gold ballroom
at the Astor estate, Beechwood Mansion, in Newport,
Rhode Island. Their marriage caused a scandal, the
result of Astor's recent divorce, and the fact that
the 47-year-old Astor was marrying an 18-year-old.
Following her marriage to Astor, every major event
throughout Madeleine's life would be eagerly documented
in the press.
The newlyweds spent several months abroad on an
extended honeymoon in hopes the incessant gossip
would die down. While returning home on the maiden
voyage of the Titanic, the ship struck an iceberg.
She was rescued, but her husband perished in the
sinking. Madeleine was pregnant with her son at the
time of the Titanic sinking, and gave birth just
four months after the harrowing ordeal. Under the
terms of her husband's will, Madeleine received
$100,000 along with the horses, carriages, and
automobiles belonging to him, the income from a
vast trust fund, and tenancy of the Astor mansion
on Fifth Avenue. The trust fund income of $200,000
a year and tenancy of the Astor mansion would
continue so long as she did not remarry.
She gave birth to a son, John Jacob Astor VI,
August 14th, 1912, at 8:15 a.m., at the Astor
mansion in New York City.
Four years after the birth of her first son, she
gave up her right to the income from her trust
fund, in order to marry again. June 22nd, 1916,
Madeleine Astor married William K. Dick at
St. Saviour's Episcopal Church, in Bar Harbor,
Maine. The Rev. A.C. Larned officiated the 2 p.m.
wedding ceremony between the survivor of the
Titanic disaster and noted banker/industrialist
William K. Dick. He served as a director of Best
Foods, St. Regis Paper Company, and National Sugar
Refining Company. Mr. Dick was a childhood friend
with whom she'd recently become reacquainted.
This second marriage ended in divorce in 1933,
but not before producing two additional sons.
Her final marriage to Italian middleweight boxer
Vincenzo Fiermonte was nearly as scandalous as
her first. Her quickie Nevada divorce and the
fact that the Italian prizefighter was 15 years
her junior was enough to start tongues wagging.
For the most part, her active social life came
to an end following this marriage. The marriage
ended when Madeleine filed for divorce in Florida,
May 2nd, 1938. She was granted a divorce from
him June 11th on grounds of extreme cruelty.
Her early death at age 46 was attributed to a
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