Guarantee Group boarding photo


Kate Powell

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Hi,

Wondered if anyone knows if a final photo of the Guarantee Group boarding Titanic just before she sets sail was really taken, like at the end of the documentary drama 'Titanic Birth of a Legend'? Would love to see that if a photo does exist.

Also would someone confirm the number of men in the Gurarantee Group, I've heard ranges from 7-10, so just checking.

Many thanks and best wishes,

Kate
 

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Thomas Krom

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Hello again Kate,





There is unfortunately no picture taken of the guarantee group as they boarded the Titanic in Belfast. However 1 member of the guarantee group, the assistant manager electrical Department of Harland and Wolff William Henry Marsh Parr, was taken on the 11th on the gymnasium on boat deck on the electric horses.

1592663999518.png


This is his last picture among with Titanic her physical instructor Thomas McCawley.



The Harland and Wolff guarantee group on-board the Titanic when she left Queenstown existed out of 9 men selected by the Thomas Andrews Jr (with him included), they are listed here bellow with their ranks at Harland and Wolff:

Thomas Andrews Jr (1873-1912): Manager of the construction works, director of the drawing office and chief architect of Harland and Wolff (since June 1910) and head of the guarantee group traveling in first class.

Roderick Chisholm (1868-1912): Leading draughtsman of the Olympic class traveling in first class.

William Henry Marsh Parr (1882-1912): assistant manager electrical Department traveling in first class.

Anthony “Archie” Wood Frost (1874-1912): outside foreman Engineer traveling in second class

Robert/Thomas Knight (1869-1912): leading hand engineer traveling in second class

William Campbell (1891-1912): joiner apprentice traveling in second class

Alfred Fleming Cunningham (1890-1912): fitter apprentice traveling in second class

Francis Parkes (1890-1912): plumber apprentice traveling in second class

Ennis Hastings Watson (1893-1912): electrician apprentice traveling in second class


All the representatives/workmen of Harland and Wolff on-board had a complimentary ticket. However when she left Belfast a few more workmen and other representatives of the shipyard were onboard such as Edward Wilding of the drawing offices, Thompson Hamilton the sectary of Thomas Andrews and Joey Thompson who was a painter and decorator meant to give the Titanic a final touch before departing. All of them left in Southampton before or during the departure on the 10th of April.




I hope this may help.




Yours sincerely,



Thomas
 
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Kate Powell

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Thanks so much for confirming Thomas.

A final photo of the Guarantee Group would have been nice, though we're so lucky to have all the photos we do. Great to know the actual number making up the group, I didn't know about the other representatives from Harland and Wolff being onboard, so I'll be researching some more now.

Enjoy your day and best wishes,

Kate
 
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Bob_Read

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At one time this was alleged to be a photo of the Titanic guarantee group. Closer inspection of the photo reveals it to be Olympic not Titanic.
Olympic guarantee group.jpg
 
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Kate Powell

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Fabulous photo, thanks for sharing, Bob. Haven't seen this one before.

Have to ask, do we know if Thomas Andrews Jr. headed the guarantee group on Olympic's maiden voyage in June 1911 or if he was too busy working on preparing Titanic for her maiden voyage and someone else led the team?
 
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Thomas Krom

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While he was the head of the guarantee group during the Olympic her maiden voyage he was not the leading representative of the shipyard. The leading representative was in fact his uncle Lord William Pirrie, who was the president and chairman of the shipyard.
 
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Bob_Read

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If this is the Olympic guarantee group and if this is Olympic and if Andrews was a member of Olympic’s guarantee group then one would think Andrews would be in the photo. There is a possibility this could be Titanic’s guarantee group but there are a few things in the photo which suggest Olympic as a more likely candidate. I would think with all the documentation of Titanic’s passengers that they could be compared with these men. The other possibility is that this isn’t either of the guarantee groups at all.
 
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Kate Powell

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Yes, would expect Thomas Andrews to be in the photo. Can only think, if this is the guarantee group on either Titanic or Olympic, he was much too busy working to stop and join in for a photo.

Certainly looks like one of the Olympic class, perhaps someone can identify who we have here.
 
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If this is the Olympic guarantee group and if this is Olympic and if Andrews was a member of Olympic’s guarantee group then one would think Andrews would be in the photo. There is a possibility this could be Titanic’s guarantee group but there are a few things in the photo which suggest Olympic as a more likely candidate.

Great photograph Bob! Definitely Olympic.
If that is the guarantee group, no idea. Do you know the source for it?
 
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Bob_Read

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Ioannis: I got it from someone who is well known in the Titanic community. He wanted me to see what ship I thought it was. I have no idea where he got it.
 
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Bob_Read

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Why? Do you think I don’t know my friend and what it means to put an unmarked photo on a public site? I don’t watermark my photos when I post them. If I don’t want them to be seen I don’t post them.
 
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Cam Houseman

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A question Kate, do you have pictures of who was each Guarantee Gang member in the documentary?

It'd be interesting to compare them to what they actually looked like!
 
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Kate Powell

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A question Kate, do you have pictures of who was each Guarantee Gang member in the documentary?

It'd be interesting to compare them to what they actually looked like!
Hi Cam,

I don't have real photos on hand but I can identify some of the members from the boarding photo seen in the documentary. As far as I know, starting on the right is Mr Roderick Chisholm, Mr Thomas Andrews Jr, Mr Thomas Millar, Mr Anthony "Archie" Frost and then Mr. Alfred Cunningham.

You're right, it is interesting to compare how they looked in the documentary with how they looked in real life. I'll be away to find some real photos to do that - probably in the records here at ET.
Thanks for your photos too!
 

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Cam Houseman

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Hi Cam,

I don't have real photos on hand but I can identify some of the members from the boarding photo seen in the documentary. As far as I know, starting on the right is Mr Roderick Chisholm, Mr Thomas Andrews Jr, Mr Thomas Millar, Mr Anthony "Archie" Frost and then Mr. Alfred Cunningham.

You're right, it is interesting to compare how they looked in the documentary with how they looked in real life. I'll be away to find some real photos to do that - probably in the records here at ET.
Thanks for your photos too!
Good Morning (Afternoon for you)

Thanks Kate, This is interesting. I had seen "Birth of A Legend" but that was a couple years ago.
I have pictures of each Guarantee Gang member

Mr. Rodrick Chisholm, 45
1621253967551.png


Mr. William Parr (who can be seen in the background of the famous Gymnasium photo with Mr. McCrawley, the Gym instructor), 30
1621254006513.png


Mr. Anthony "Artie" Frost, 38
1621254078759.png


Mr. Robert Knight, 43
1621254101156.png


Mr. Alfred "Alfie" Cunningham, 22
1621254132840.png


Mr. William Campbell (there are no known adult pictures, I think), 21

1621254169434.png


Mr. Francis "Frank" Parkes, 22
Francis Parkes.jpg


And Mr. Ennis Watson, 18
1621254296892.png


Mr. Parkes, Watson, Campbell, and Cunningham shared E-73. Mr. Frost held E-75 with Mr. Knight, while Mr. Parr held E-27, one of the "Flex" (meaning they could be First/second depending on if the each class is overbooked, so they could be counted as First or second) Cabins on the starboard side of E-Deck. Mr. Chisholm held C-60, on the portside of C-Deck.

Thanks to Thomas Krom for helping with the research a while back.
I hope this helps Kate :)
Great photograph Bob! Definitely Olympic.
If that is the guarantee group, no idea. Do you know the source for it?
I do not think this is the Guarantee Gang, as none of these men look alike. The man on the second-left looks like Mr. Francis Parkes, but his ears are different and his hair is too dark.
 
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Kate Powell

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Good Morning (Afternoon for you)

Thanks Kate, This is interesting. I had seen "Birth of A Legend" but that was a couple years ago.
I have pictures of each Guarantee Gang member

Mr. Rodrick Chisholm, 45
View attachment 76693

Mr. William Parr (who can be seen in the background of the famous Gymnasium photo with Mr. McCrawley, the Gym instructor), 30
View attachment 76694

Mr. Anthony "Artie" Frost, 38
View attachment 76695

Mr. Robert Knight, 43
View attachment 76696

Mr. Alfred "Alfie" Cunningham, 22
View attachment 76697

Mr. William Campbell (there are no known adult pictures, I think), 21

View attachment 76698

Mr. Francis "Frank" Parkes, 22
View attachment 76699

And Mr. Ennis Watson, 18
View attachment 76700

Mr. Parkes, Watson, Campbell, and Cunningham shared E-73. Mr. Frost held E-75 with Mr. Knight, while Mr. Parr held E-27, one of the "Flex" (meaning they could be First/second depending on if the each class is overbooked, so they could be counted as First or second) Cabins on the starboard side of E-Deck. Mr. Chisholm held C-60, on the portside of C-Deck.

Thanks to Thomas Krom for helping with the research a while back.
I hope this helps Kate :)

I do not think this is the Guarantee Gang, as none of these men look alike. The man on the second-left looks like Mr. Francis Parkes, but his ears are different and his hair is too dark.
Thank you for the photos and the information on their rooms, Cam.
I'm pleased 'Birth of a Legend' featured the Guarantee Group and told us a little about their backgrounds and personal stories. Not sure about any inaccuracies in the documentary although I'm pretty sure Thomas Millar was an engineer, not deck crew as shown in the documentary.

Mr. Parr, Mr Knight, Mr Campbell, Mr Parkes and Mr Watson did not appear in the documentary, at least I didn't spot them and that was a shame.
It was terrible that every member of the Guarantee Group was lost.

Also, 'Birth of a Legend' features the only time Mr Alexander Carlisle appears on screen, that I know of. The former Chief Designer of the Olympic Class liners. That was an interesting inclusion.

In the other photo, I agree with you. I don't think that's the Guarantee gang either. I hope we find out who they are.
 
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Seumas

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Thank you for the photos and the information on their rooms, Cam.
I'm pleased 'Birth of a Legend' featured the Guarantee Group and told us a little about their backgrounds and personal stories. Not sure about any inaccuracies in the documentary although I'm pretty sure Thomas Millar was an engineer, not deck crew as shown in the documentary.

Mr. Parr, Mr Knight, Mr Campbell, Mr Parkes and Mr Watson did not appear in the documentary, at least I didn't spot them and that was a shame.
It was terrible that every member of the Guarantee Group was lost.

Also, 'Birth of a Legend' features the only time Mr Alexander Carlisle appears on screen, that I know of. The former Chief Designer of the Olympic Class liners. That was an interesting inclusion.

In the other photo, I agree with you. I don't think that's the Guarantee gang either. I hope we find out who they are.
You are correct. Thomas Millar was the Titanic's assistant deck engineer rather than one of the AB's as the film portrays him.

There were a few other errors in the film.

  • Today there is a lot of scepticism of the story regarding the dinner party in London where the Olympic class were supposedly first conceived of.
  • They got William Pirrie's political views all mixed up. In the film, Pirrie is portrayed as an Irish nationalist who supports Home Rule for Ireland. In reality was a moderate unionist who wanted to find a compromise with the Home Rulers and abhorred anti-Catholicism. This set him at odds with the militant unionists who were also deeply anti-Catholic.
  • Every rivet in the Titanic is seen to be hammered in individually in the film. This is wrong. Most of the rivets were inserted using powerful electric riveting machines that hung down from the gantries. Only the rivets in certain curved sections and tight corners were the ones that had to be hammered in.
  • Alexander Carlisle's supposedly principled resignation over the reduction in lifeboat numbers is a myth of his own creation. The film also implies that he retired after leaving H&W, he did not. Carlisle subsequently took on a job with the Wellin company.
  • Roderick Chisholm is portrayed as an Ulsterman when he was actually a Scotsman.
All in all however it wasn't a bad drama-documentary and they certainly did well considering they did not have a huge budget available. I liked it.
 
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Cam Houseman

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Thank you for the photos and the information on their rooms, Cam.
I'm pleased 'Birth of a Legend' featured the Guarantee Group and told us a little about their backgrounds and personal stories. Not sure about any inaccuracies in the documentary although I'm pretty sure Thomas Millar was an engineer, not deck crew as shown in the documentary.

Mr. Parr, Mr Knight, Mr Campbell, Mr Parkes and Mr Watson did not appear in the documentary, at least I didn't spot them and that was a shame.
It was terrible that every member of the Guarantee Group was lost.

Also, 'Birth of a Legend' features the only time Mr Alexander Carlisle appears on screen, that I know of. The former Chief Designer of the Olympic Class liners. That was an interesting inclusion.

In the other photo, I agree with you. I don't think that's the Guarantee gang either. I hope we find out who they are.
You are most welcome! I agree about the Guarantee Gang, most of them were young, and the older guys like Mr. Parr, Mr. Chisholm, and Mr. Frost were married, so I imagine their poor wives and children must've been devastated :(


Good on them for portraying Mr. Carlisle, many documentaries and books skip over this fact!
You are correct. Thomas Millar was the Titanic's assistant deck engineer rather than one of the AB's as the film portrays him.

There were a few other errors in the film.

  • Today there is a lot of scepticism of the story regarding the dinner party in London where the Olympic class were supposedly first conceived of.
  • They got William Pirrie's political views all mixed up. In the film, Pirrie is portrayed as an Irish nationalist who supports Home Rule for Ireland. In reality was a moderate unionist who wanted to find a compromise with the Home Rulers and abhorred anti-Catholicism. This set him at odds with the militant unionists who were also deeply anti-Catholic.
  • Every rivet in the Titanic is seen to be hammered in individually in the film. This is wrong. Most of the rivets were inserted using powerful electric riveting machines that hung down from the gantries. Only the rivets in certain curved sections and tight corners were the ones that had to be hammered in.
  • Alexander Carlisle's supposedly principled resignation over the reduction in lifeboat numbers is a myth of his own creation. The film also implies that he retired after leaving H&W, he did not. Carlisle subsequently took on a job with the Wellin company.
  • Roderick Chisholm is portrayed as an Ulsterman when he was actually a Scotsman.
All in all however it wasn't a bad drama-documentary and they certainly did well considering they did not have a huge budget available. I liked it.
From what I remember, it was alright, I was mostly more fascinated by the Shipyard construction than the personal drama, although I could be mixing that up with "Blood and Steel?"
Another error is that she launched with an Enclosed A-Deck promenade, which is not true (Although I think we all know, here's a photo just in case)
1621272908072.png


May 31st, 1911, taken by Robert Welch
1621273037276.png


I've seen a picture of the riveting machine in the 1911 Shipbuilder magazine, I'll have to check later
 
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