Deck rising.


Newman123

Member
I do recall that as the bridge went under, the ship 'rose: up by a few feet before plunging back down. creating a wave in the process. Any evidence or proof of that occurring or if survivors actually saw that happen?
 

Arun Vajpey

Member
At about 02:16 am the Titanic's bow section had dipped to about 11 degrees and at that point the ship suddenly lost its longitudinal stability and gave a forward and downward 'lurch' that resulted in displacement of a large volume of water towards the rising stern. This was what many survivors described as a 'wave'.
 

Kyle Naber

Member
As Arun stated, the wave was not from any natural occurrence and was due to the ship plunging down at a fast rate- this was when many people on the boat deck were washed into the water and the deck became a beach. As for the bow rising, it would not have happened. The bow section was very full of water at the point when the bridge went down. It’s likely that the “rising bow” was a result of either the port list becoming stronger or the port list being eliminated.
 
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Arun Vajpey

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It’s likely that the “rising bow” was a result of either the port list becoming stronger
That is a very good point. The starboard part of the bow would have risen slightly in relation to the port side as the list got worse. In the semi-darkness and depending on the vantage point of a given survivor in a lifeboat, that could easily have given an illusion of "the bow rising".
 
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RileyGardner17

Riley Gardner
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I've been really fascinated by the question of the "deck rising" for awhile now. In Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage, Hugh Brewster has the following: "Just then the liner's foredeck shuddered upward and Norris Williams suddenly found himself standing high and dry on the boat deck as the water retreated" (204), and he continues by saying "A moment later the ship's bow lurched downward again, sending an even larger wave rolling aft" (205).

I am not entirely sure what Brewster's source is.

Yet Eugene Daly also states in his account: "During that brief time that I worked on cutting one of those ropes, the collapsible was crowded with people hanging upon the edges. The Titanic gave a lurch downward and we were in the water up to our hips. She rose again slightly, and I succeeded in cutting the second rope which held her stern.
Another lurch threw this boat myself off and away from the ship into the water. I fell upon one of the oars and fell into a mass of people.
"

Daly's account is rather specific that he felt her go down, rise again, and "lurch" down finally.

I wouldn't go so far as to say this was necessarily the bow rising, but it would appear that some large displacement of water - possibly a bulkhead failing - was taking place within the ship.
 
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Arun Vajpey

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Daly's account is rather specific
I don't think it is. He might well be referring to the stern, which would have 'dropped' suddenly with the breakup and then appeared to rise a little after it hit the water. The flooded bow was deep down by then and could not have possibly risen.

What I would be interested in knowing is the relative positions of the people who thought they saw the bow rise and the relationship of that impression with the break-up. Those who were in lifeboats on the starboard side of the ship just before the break-up started would briefly get the impression that the bow was rising as the port list suddenly got worse. They would not have been able to see the forecastle from their vantage position and given the Titanic's massive size, the increasing list could easily create the illusion of a rising bow.
 
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chrismireya

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Yet Eugene Daly also states in his account: "During that brief time that I worked on cutting one of those ropes, the collapsible was crowded with people hanging upon the edges. The Titanic gave a lurch downward and we were in the water up to our hips. She rose again slightly, and I succeeded in cutting the second rope which held her stern.
Another lurch threw this boat myself off and away from the ship into the water. I fell upon one of the oars and fell into a mass of people.
"

Daly's account is rather specific that he felt her go down, rise again, and "lurch" down finally.

I wouldn't go so far as to say this was necessarily the bow rising, but it would appear that some large displacement of water - possibly a bulkhead failing - was taking place within the ship.

My belief is that this likely referred to what Arun and Kyle mentioned earlier -- the list to port (and back to starboard). If you're standing on the port side trying to cut the Collapsible B lifeboat free, you're experiencing a back-and-foth between a list-to-port and a list-to-starboard in real time.

If Titanic is sinking and you're at the water line when this happens, then it will feel like the side you're on "rose" -- because it did. The port side rises when the starboard side sinks (or if the ship returns more to an even level). Remember: Seawater was entering Titanic and traveling throughout the bow. That ship probably experience lists back and forth as the sinking progressed.

Eugene Daly's testimony is while trying to cut Collapsible B free on the port side of the ship. He was in a great position to have experienced the port list quite notably. On the other side of the ship from him was First Class Steward Edward Brown. He described a clear port list at the same time.

There was also great stress on the ship at the time. We don't know precisely how she broke apart (and which sections gave way first or if it was more of a simultaneous breakup). However, the stress was huge. It's amazing that Titanic held up as long as she did. I do think that Eugene Daly describes the list -- back and forth -- as Titanic was progressively losing the battle with the sinking.
 
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Arun Vajpey

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There might have been a small timeframe shortly before the Titanic lost its longitudinal stability and the bow gave that sudden forward and downward 'lurch', where the rate at which the port list was increasing exceeded the rate at which the bow was dipping underwater. If someone in a lifeboat on the port side of the ship was focusing on the row of lit portholes near the sinking bow within that timeframe, they would have seen some bow end lights actually rise a little briefly. From their vantage point this could easily have created an illusion of the entire bow 'rising'.
 
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RileyGardner17

Riley Gardner
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My belief is that this likely referred to what Arun and Kyle mentioned earlier -- the list to port (and back to starboard). If you're standing on the port side trying to cut the Collapsible B lifeboat free, you're experiencing a back-and-foth between a list-to-port and a list-to-starboard in real time.

If Titanic is sinking and you're at the water line when this happens, then it will feel like the side you're on "rose" -- because it did. The port side rises when the starboard side sinks (or if the ship returns more to an even level). Remember: Seawater was entering Titanic and traveling throughout the bow. That ship probably experience lists back and forth as the sinking progressed.

Eugene Daly's testimony is while trying to cut Collapsible B free on the port side of the ship. He was in a great position to have experienced the port list quite notably. On the other side of the ship from him was First Class Steward Edward Brown. He described a clear port list at the same time.

There was also great stress on the ship at the time. We don't know precisely how she broke apart (and which sections gave way first or if it was more of a simultaneous breakup). However, the stress was huge. It's amazing that Titanic held up as long as she did. I do think that Eugene Daly describes the list -- back and forth -- as Titanic was progressively losing the battle with the sinking.
Thanks for the clarification on this. On further thought that does appear to me more likely than simply the whole of the ship rising a few feet. Jack Thayer's letter to Milton Long's parents describes that the ship went on a more even keel around the time of the bridge submersion:

"There was such a big list to port that it seemed as if she would turn over on her side as she sank. In such a case we would not have had the slightest chance, so I told him I was going to jump out and slide down the davit ropes into the water and try to swim to the boats in the distance. I started to do this three times, and each time he caught hold of me and asked me to wait awhile. In a few minutes she straightened up on an even keel. We hurried back and stood by the rail about even with the second funnel. She started to shoot down fast at an angle of about thirty degrees."

Forgive me everyone, I am just trying to make sense of this in my mind. Daly's account of a "lurch" might be the same event as Thayer's "shoot down" description. So this would lead me to believe that the port side was awash while the starboard side wasn't, due to the list. A displacement of water within her caused her to go back onto an even keel and give an illusion she was rising to the people on the port side. The straightening of the keel was followed by a sudden "lurch" downward, which caused the wave that threw people about. Hopefully this is the correct interpretation? Do feel free to correct/chastise me.
 

Kyle Naber

Member
Thanks for the clarification on this. On further thought that does appear to me more likely than simply the whole of the ship rising a few feet. Jack Thayer's letter to Milton Long's parents describes that the ship went on a more even keel around the time of the bridge submersion:

"There was such a big list to port that it seemed as if she would turn over on her side as she sank. In such a case we would not have had the slightest chance, so I told him I was going to jump out and slide down the davit ropes into the water and try to swim to the boats in the distance. I started to do this three times, and each time he caught hold of me and asked me to wait awhile. In a few minutes she straightened up on an even keel. We hurried back and stood by the rail about even with the second funnel. She started to shoot down fast at an angle of about thirty degrees."

Forgive me everyone, I am just trying to make sense of this in my mind. Daly's account of a "lurch" might be the same event as Thayer's "shoot down" description. So this would lead me to believe that the port side was awash while the starboard side wasn't, due to the list. A displacement of water within her caused her to go back onto an even keel and give an illusion she was rising to the people on the port side. The straightening of the keel was followed by a sudden "lurch" downward, which caused the wave that threw people about. Hopefully this is the correct interpretation? Do feel free to correct/chastise me.

I do feel that this perfectly explains any mention of a rising deck towards the end.
 
I've been really fascinated by the question of the "deck rising" for awhile now. In Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage, Hugh Brewster has the following: "Just then the liner's foredeck shuddered upward and Norris Williams suddenly found himself standing high and dry on the boat deck as the water retreated" (204), and he continues by saying "A moment later the ship's bow lurched downward again, sending an even larger wave rolling aft" (205).

I am not entirely sure what Brewster's source is.

Yet Eugene Daly also states in his account: "During that brief time that I worked on cutting one of those ropes, the collapsible was crowded with people hanging upon the edges. The Titanic gave a lurch downward and we were in the water up to our hips. She rose again slightly, and I succeeded in cutting the second rope which held her stern.
Another lurch threw this boat myself off and away from the ship into the water. I fell upon one of the oars and fell into a mass of people.
"

Daly's account is rather specific that he felt her go down, rise again, and "lurch" down finally.

I wouldn't go so far as to say this was necessarily the bow rising, but it would appear that some large displacement of water - possibly a bulkhead failing - was taking place within the ship.
could the deck seeming to rise just be Titanic correcting her port list?
 
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Arun Vajpey

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could the deck seeming to rise just be Titanic correcting her port list?
Personally, it depends on one's perception of 'deck rising'. IF the port list lessen towards the end, it would have been after the bow was well down with a trim of 8 or 9 degrees IMO. Therefore, those who thought from their vantage point that the bow 'rose' could not have said so because of any change in the list. But if they were referring to the exposed part of the deck itself in general, then yes, any change in the list would make it appear as though it had risen slightly if they were watching from certain angles.
 
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I do recall that as the bridge went under, the ship 'rose: up by a few feet before plunging back down. creating a wave in the process. Any evidence or proof of that occurring or if survivors actually saw that happen?
They talk about this in the book On A Sea Of Glass where the bow recovered momentarily after returning from a port list to an even keel, people standing on the boat deck mentioned it felt like it moved up before it dipped down.
 
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