Did Murdoch shoot himself?


Dec 6, 2000
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George,

Without more testimonies or accounts, we cannot prove anything in this respect. We cannot prove ANYONE got shot. If someone was shot, we cannot prove it was Murdoch. We can only make educated guesses based on what we do know.

And in this situation, it is very unlikely anyone will find anything on the sea floor to show us anything, either.
 
May 1, 2004
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I think, like George, 'no smoke without fire'. Several people, not just a young boy, said that a man shot himself in the head. No one knows who the man was, and even if it was an officer, all the officers who people saw did their duty until they could do no more. If one decided a quick death was better than a lingering one, I respect his decision.
As for Captain Smith, he was easily recognized, with his full white beard. If the boy knew him by sight ...
If not, then probably not.
After all small boys and large adults will say anything for attention.
 
May 27, 2007
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Hi Bill and Marilyn,

Well I still think one of the officers shot themselves but the Passengers for the most part didn't know who was who, meaning they didn't know the name of these ship's officers! Like you Marilyn, I really don't blame the Officer or man who shot himself because he probably knew the horror that a death at sea entailed!
 
Dec 5, 2008
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Hi, George! :D *waves*

I also believe that someone shot themselves that night (and I also cannot blame them for it), but personally, I do not believe Wilde did it.

I base that simply on the fact that I cannot believe that any father who had four very young children who would be orphaned without him (not a good thing to be at the time!) would not at least give survival a go. I'm sure you (as a single father) would do everything you could to get back to your own young child.

Hence why "Wilde = Suicide" just never added up for me.
 
May 27, 2007
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Howdy, Kat!!! "Waves back!" XD

This is so! I forgot Wild had young children at home and Murdoch had a Wife! You make a good point!

Actually it might not of been an officer at all! It could of been someone from the purser's department! As I said in a earlier post a lot of the passengers didn't know who was who! They really didn't know these Ship Officers by name!
 

Kevin Tischer

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Dec 24, 2011
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I for one refuse to believe that Murdoch had shot himself. i have always seen him as a hero and that he died trying to free the collapsible when the final plunge began. Lightoller states that he knew someone that did shoot themselves but would not say who. If anyone did do it, and I'm sure someone had, it was Wilde. There was also a letter signed by all surviving officers sent to Murdoch's wife saying he didn't kill himself. It's unfortunate that Lightoller didn't say who shot himself, but I do understand how he wanted to protect his shipmate's too. Perhaps Lightoller never said because it really was Murdoch and he didn't want to go against what he previously had said. But I refuse to believe it.

[Moderator's note: Two vulgarities contained in this message as originally posted have been changed. Since they may have been typos, no further action will be taken, but any further messages with similar content will be removed, not changed. MAB]
 
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Caroline Mendes Ferreira

Guest
William Murdoch What happened to him?

Many no mystery surrounding the official Murdoch, afirman because he committed suicide. Bad he was seen for the last time when attempting to launch folding, now many passengers said they saw Murdoch actually committing Suicide.
The passenger testified that Archibald Gracie Murdoch in an attempt to launch a foldable deck falls. Harold Bride Murdoch also said he saw the water with officer James Paul Moody. Bad already dead Murdoch was grabbed in a chair dead from hypothermia.
In my opinion I can not say that the officer committed suicide Murdoch because there are several mysteries. In the film James Cameron shows that Murdoch before killing himself shot two passengers, I think in this case he would not have the guts to kill anyone. What do you think really happened to the officer?

[Moderator's note: This message was originally a new thread. MAB]
 

Tommy

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Jul 21, 2012
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Where there any witnesses that actually named the officer who shot himself?

There were survivors who actually stated that it was Captain Smith who shot himself. However, others say that he brought a child to one of the lifeboats and then swam away never to be seen again. Would witnesses have known who Wilde and Murdoch were?
 

Matteo Eyre

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Feb 7, 2013
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i wouldn't have said that they could have easily told the difference especially as there wasn't much of an age gap between them, some may have been able to.Thomas Arthur Whiteley, 1st class saloon steward claimed that whilst on board collapsible B he witnessed Captain Smith with a child in the water before smith went under the waves, this suggests that it was not Smith who shot himself, but the Officer is unknown, no real thought has been given to the fact that it could have been Moody who shot himself but i doubt this. I would have thought that it could would have been Wilde that shot himself as his whereabouts during the sinking are unknown and it isn't known if he assisted in trying to lower the remaining 2 collapsible boats.
Hope this helps
Matteo :)
 

Tommy

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Jul 21, 2012
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i wouldn't have said that they could have easily told the difference especially as there wasn't much of an age gap between them, some may have been able to.Thomas Arthur Whiteley, 1st class saloon steward claimed that whilst on board collapsible B he witnessed Captain Smith with a child in the water before smith went under the waves, this suggests that it was not Smith who shot himself, but the Officer is unknown, no real thought has been given to the fact that it could have been Moody who shot himself but i doubt this. I would have thought that it could would have been Wilde that shot himself as his whereabouts during the sinking are unknown and it isn't known if he assisted in trying to lower the remaining 2 collapsible boats.
Hope this helps
Matteo :)
Also, Lightoller wrote a letter to Murdoch's widow saying that he died "like a man doing his full duty". I think it was also signed by Pitman (who left quite early in the sinking, so wouldn't have known) and Boxhall.
 

Matteo Eyre

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Feb 7, 2013
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Exactly, but from what i know no letter of this type was sent to Mr Wilde's widow, maybe this was a slight clue given to us
Matteo :)
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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That's right, nobody wrote to Wilde's wife. Probably because she'd been dead for over a year.

[Moderator's note: Two messages about Moody's death were posted here after this message. The first was moved to the existing thread about Moody's death; the second was deleted as redundant. MAB]
 
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Caroline Mendes Ferreira

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By my research Murdoch is a mystery because it has several polemics around him as he died
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>By my research Murdoch is a mystery because it has several polemics around him as he died <<

What research?

Not to be a killjoy, but so far, about all I've seen from you are declarations of fact made without first making sure they ARE facts, as well as missives which looked like they've been taken from somebody else's work.

Did you even bother to read the article I posted a link to? I know some of the guys who did that work and I guarantee you they did some serious research.
 

L. Colombo

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Nov 22, 2012
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i wouldn't have said that they could have easily told the difference especially as there wasn't much of an age gap between them, some may have been able to.Thomas Arthur Whiteley, 1st class saloon steward claimed that whilst on board collapsible B he witnessed Captain Smith with a child in the water before smith went under the waves, this suggests that it was not Smith who shot himself, but the Officer is unknown, no real thought has been given to the fact that it could have been Moody who shot himself but i doubt this. I would have thought that it could would have been Wilde that shot himself as his whereabouts during the sinking are unknown and it isn't known if he assisted in trying to lower the remaining 2 collapsible boats.
Hope this helps
Well, as for a maybe not 100% but quite 90-95% certain elimination of Moody and Smith from the 'suicide candidates':

1) Moody didn't even have a gun, since only the senior officers - Smith, Wilde, Murdoch and Lightoller - had taken the guns stowed in the first (or second?) officer's cabin, plus Lowe had taken his own (personal) gun which he had taken on board in case he could have needed one.

2) Smith was seen by Harold Bride to jump into the water from near the bridge a few minutes before the final plunge:
Senator SMITH.
I want you to tell again, because there seems to be a little confusion about it, when you last saw the captain of theTitanic?
Mr. BRIDE.
The last I saw of the captain of the Titanic, he went overboard from the bridge about, I should think, three minutes before I left it myself.
Senator SMITH.
Did he have a life preserver on?
Mr. BRIDE.
I could not say, sir.

There are also other accounts of Smith diving from the bridge at that time (William John Mellors, Harry Senior, and others, plus Walter Hurst who said he ricognized Smith in the mysterious man with the 'powerful' 'voice of the autority' reported by Gracie and others, who died in the water near collapsible B).

This should limit the field to Wilde or Murdoch, IF any officer really shot himself. (Of which I'm not so convinced. Some 25-40 people who were at collapsible A and B or in that area survived, but very few reported the 'suicide').
 

Matteo Eyre

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Feb 7, 2013
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Ah right, would Pittman have left the ship by this point?? If he hadn't would he have been given a gun?? Didn't know Bride testified that he'd seen him, is that in Gracie's book?? Yes i can see how it limits it to them now, I do believe that an Officer committed suicide as i don't think it would have been something that people would have made up and i think there would have been slip ups in their stories if it was a lie, since people would have seen others shot i do not believe that all would have paid attention to another gun shot being so worried as to what to do with themselves and only those who were looking that way would have seen it, that plausible??
Matteo :)
 

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