GH Davis The Sphere and the last moments of the Lusitania


May 3, 2002
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Five years ago the Titanic Historic Society journal The Commutator [vol.29 #170 2005 reproduced what appears to be an entire article which was originally published by The Sphere.

As well as learning the source of now famous drawings and paintings that now represent the disaster I saw a rare representation of the last moments by GH Davis which shows the stern of the ship settling back into the sea. Attached is my interpretation of this image including original errors of the artist.

final_plunge_gh_davies.jpg


What was also interesting was that the cation descibed it as based on eyewitness despription:
"The vessel remained fairly steady for nearly quarter of an hour when she suddenly tilted and dived [sic] bow down. At that moment the eyewitness saw a rush of steam, smoke,cinders and coal dust burt out in a cloud from the port side."

There are other references to this elsewhere in the articles captions [the cap below D MacPersons' annotated drwaing of the Lusitania sinking with Ireland in the background.]

This is the first I have heard about a sudden plunge of the ship to the seabed.

anyone else have any thoughts about this?

Martin
 

Jim Kalafus

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Dec 3, 2000
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No, I did not post and then delete, or be deleted.

There was no sudden plunge to the seabed. However, a very large number of witnesses, either aft on the ship in the vicinity of the docking bridge or in the water to starboard, saw something large fall or break off the ship towards the end. This MIGHT have given the impression of a sudden plunge.

It is hard to get a handle on what might have broken off/fallen. Those who were far aft described it as being the bow shearing off....which we know didn't happen. Those in the water saw it as being a section of the ship's side falling off. I have no idea....
 

Jim Kalafus

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Colin's post was moved from the Lusitania section to the general book section.

There is a great deal available on that incident. Unfortunately, those with the best view (in the water on the starboard side) were those in the worst position to be observers. So, it was most frequently described as a funnel falling off, or part of the ship's side breaking away.

Strange thing is, those who were amidships on the boat deck at the end (Maud Thompson, Charles Lauriat, Charlotte Pye et al) did not mention it. I've been concentrating on accounts by the 100+ occupants of #15, the boat that got washed in to the funnel stays, and so far no one in 15 has mentioned this event.

So, we are looking at something that was visible to people on the stern, in the water, and in the more distant boats, but which was not noticed by people almost directly underneath or beside it.
 

Mark Baber

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Dec 29, 2000
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Colin's post was moved from the Lusitania section to the general book section.

Actually, I moved it to a thread in the "Marketplace" topic, since he's looking to sell the book and not discuss its contents or merits. When a message is moved like that some of the index pages don't reflect that, and will continue to show the moved post as still being in the thread/topic where it was originally posted.

If I recall, there were two or three messages in this thread between Martin's first and second ones that I moved to another thread because they were unrelated to the subject of this one, but I didn't off the top of my head remember where I moved them to.
 

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