Four in a nest?

Jim Currie

Jim Currie

Senior Member
I have been pilloried for asking this before, but I ask it yet again.

In the famous photograph alleged to be of Titanic leaving Southampton, if you zoom into the crows nest, you will see a person wearing an officer's hat at the front of the nest, two sailors watching the tugs on the starboard side and a single sailor watching the quay side. Who were they? Why were they up there?
 
Stewart Hall

Stewart Hall

Member
I have been pilloried for asking this before, but I ask it yet again.

In the famous photograph alleged to be of Titanic leaving Southampton, if you zoom into the crows nest, you will see a person wearing an officer's hat at the front of the nest, two sailors watching the tugs on the starboard side and a single sailor watching the quay side. Who were they? Why were they up there?
Hi Jim, Would you mind posting the photo? Thanks!
 
Jim Currie

Jim Currie

Senior Member
Are you really asking because you don't know, or are you waiting to tell us the answer?
I do not know for certain, Sam. it is an anomaly which does not fit the occassion.
Perhaps I have a problem with my old eyesight? However, you and Mark are the expert historians who have written reams on all aspects of the subject and have access to information which I do not. I assume that you both have opinions of your own? If so, let's have them.
Incidentally, since I last posted on this photograph, many new members have joined ET. It might just be refreshing to hear their input.

This is an open forum so let's discuss the "four" of-um ;)
 
Jim Currie

Jim Currie

Senior Member
Hi Jim, Would you mind posting the photo? Thanks!
Hello Stewart, It is really a series of three and they are blow ups.
3 men in the nest

Alongside the quay (man sitting on railway sleeper)
S l400

Out at the entrance to the WSL Dock and a little later 4 in the nest
Nomen in the nest

Passing the waving well wishers and heading for the New York? An empty nest
 
Cam Houseman

Cam Houseman

Member
I do not know for certain, Sam. it is an anomaly which does not fit the occassion.
Perhaps I have a problem with my old eyesight? However, you and Mark are the expert historians who have written reams on all aspects of the subject and have access to information which I do not. I assume that you both have opinions of your own? If so, let's have them.
Incidentally, since I last posted on this photograph, many new members have joined ET. It might just be refreshing to hear their input.

This is an open forum so let's discuss the "four" of-um ;)
Hi Jim, Good Morning!

Which Photograph do you mean?
1603111395964
 
Cam Houseman

Cam Houseman

Member
Thats a good pic. But it looks more she's docking than leaving.
Good Point.

I notice the cropped photo is in color, so I can pick some more:

This one, Although it looks like she's going Astern
1603140343013


This one, which is my lock screen
1603140486469


I think i see Four in this one
1603140577064
 
Steven Christian

Steven Christian

Member
Yes. That last picture definantley looks like at least 4 in the nest.
 
Jim Currie

Jim Currie

Senior Member
We have to be careful here. Four might just be three men and an open door in the mast. However there is a lot which is not quite right about these photographs. I prefer to use the untouched ones. However, take Cam's photographs.
In (1) she is not going astern. If you look carefully, you can see the bow tug tow rope through the center lead and the tug's propeller wash. If you look even closer, you can see a little bow wave a few inches high on Titanic.
(2) was taken before (1). Note that the Reporter in the bowler hat has no overcoat indicating it was near to or after mid day.
(3) is a really strange one. When did Titanic use her starboard anchor at Southampton. If you look closely, you can see it is being retrieved and that cable washing hose is in use...see the water coming out of the hawse pipe.
The first 2 are more than likely of her leaving. However it is the following one which shows Titanic shortly after she turned down river - allegedly after (2) and (1) which does not fit. No men in the nest




Titanic leaving southampton the titanic project
 
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Cam Houseman

Cam Houseman

Member
We have to be careful here. Four might just be three men and an open door in the mast. However there is a lot which is not quite right about these photographs. I prefer to use the untouched ones. However, take Cam's photographs.
In (1) she is not going astern. If you look carefully, you can see the bow tug tow rope through the center lead and the tug's propeller wash. If you look even closer, you can see a little bow wave a few inches high on Titanic.
(2) was taken before (1). Note that the Reporter in the bowler hat has no overcoat indicating it was near to or after mid day.
(3) is a really strange one. When did Titanic use her starboard anchor at Southampton. If you look closely, you can see it is being retrieved and that cable washing hose is in use...see the water coming out of the hawse pipe.
The first 2 are more than likely of her leaving. However it is the following one which shows Titanic shortly after she turned down river - allegedly after (2) and (1) which does not fit. No men in the nest




View attachment 72661
Hi Jim!

Hmm....so is it a mystery what Photograph you're referring to?

here's a theory: the extra two men could be the two handles on the side of the entrance into the Crow's Nest
1603202920931


1603203002552

1603202979399


Also, an Open door in the mast? I didn't think there was one!
I've never seen diagrams of the Crow's Nest with a door. For reference, here's Paul Lee's Diagram
1603202783823
 
Jim Currie

Jim Currie

Senior Member
Hi Jim!

Hmm....so is it a mystery what Photograph you're referring to?

here's a theory: the extra two men could be the two handles on the side of the entrance into the Crow's Nest
View attachment 72665

View attachment 72667
View attachment 72666

Also, an Open door in the mast? I didn't think there was one!
I've never seen diagrams of the Crow's Nest with a door. For reference, here's Paul Lee's Diagram
View attachment 72663
All the photographs labelled as Titanic leaving Southampton have a ? after them but that is verging on s diversion to this thread. The question should be "When would the Crow's nest be manned and who would man it?"
Paul's sketch shows the doorway and handles if fitted would be invisible to anyone below the bulwark rail of the nest so you can rule out that idea. He also shows a midship- fore end staunchion for a weather cloth. As far as I know, there was no such staunchion.
However, if you have a closer look at the picture of her passing the crowd on the quay, you can actually imagine that there is one man in the nest...the black outline to the left of the bell might well be someone standing on something waving with his left hand to someone on the other side.:confused:
 
Cam Houseman

Cam Houseman

Member
All the photographs labelled as Titanic leaving Southampton have a ? after them but that is verging on s diversion to this thread. The question should be "When would the Crow's nest be manned and who would man it?"
Paul's sketch shows the doorway and handles if fitted would be invisible to anyone below the bulwark rail of the nest so you can rule out that idea. He also shows a midship- fore end staunchion for a weather cloth. As far as I know, there was no such staunchion.
However, if you have a closer look at the picture of her passing the crowd on the quay, you can actually imagine that there is one man in the nest...the black outline to the left of the bell might well be someone standing on something waving with his left hand to someone on the other side.:confused:
Jim, I've never seen a sly mention of a door after climbing up the ladder to the Crow's Nest. Could you share a sketch or diagram?
 
Cam Houseman

Cam Houseman

Member
The standard practice was to have 3 in the nest upon leaving the dock and going down Southampton waters. Two lookouts and the 2nd officer.
Hi Sam

Did Lightoller, being the Second officer, ever mention that in his memoirs or Testimony?
 
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