David BlairThe Would Be Second Officer

Eric Paddon

Jun 4, 2002
There is one question regarding Titanic's crew that has puzzled me for many years and that is the total disappearance of David Blair, Titanic's original Second Officer after the reshuffling at Southampton. Is there no record at all of him being interviewed after the disaster to offer his thoughts on the tragedy? What ultimately became of Blair? Is it true that he might have been the one who could have answered the question about what happened to the binoculars in the crows nest?

Reece Ewington

>My friend i have had the same question in my head but i dont think he got >of at south hampton he was allready taken of befor the sailing day.He was >on bord for the sea triels though.But yes what did happen to him. from reece ewington 17 m melbourne

Dave Gittins

Mar 16, 2000
Eric, I'm pretty sure that this has been covered. Try a search of ET.

As for the binoculars, the glasses used by the lookouts between Belfast and Southampton finished up in the hands of Lightoller. The men who used them recalled that they were marked 'Second Officer'. At Southampton, the glasses were returned to Blair's cabin and naturally Lightoller used them. When the lookouts were told that there were no glasses for them, it was apparently the literal truth. Blair must have seen fit to lend his glasses to the lookout, perhaps because of the amount of shipping they were likely to meet in the Irish Sea and the Channel. They would also have been looking for lights and landmarks. Lightoller did not think the lookouts needed glasses. (See his evidence in the civil court).

Inger Sheil

Feb 9, 1999
Blair's daughter later had some comments to make on his Titanic experiences. Blair himself went on to have fairly long and successful merchant and RNR careers - although most of the focus on his WWI experiences has centred on courtmarshall that pinned much of the blame for the loss of the Oceanic on him as navigator, less well known is the fact that he was decorated for later actions in the war.


Nov 2, 2001
I recall reading some about the court-martial from Stenson...made it rather sound that the verdict was the breaking of Blair. Good to hear that it was not.

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