How and when they got away


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Pat Cook

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Dear Maureen and Mike,

I literally have just been working on a passage in Beesley regarding the Titanic's list; this was before the collision. It reads:

"I then called the attention of our table to the way the Titanic listed to port (I had noticed this before), and we all watched the sky-line through the portholes as we sat at the purser's table in the saloon; it was plain she did so, for the sky-line and sea on the port side were visable most of the time and on the starboard only sky. The purser remarked that probably coal had been used mostly on the starboard side. It is no doubt a common occurance for all vessels to list to some degree..."

Also, in Reade's "The Ship That Stood Still", there is a photo of Titanic where the list is quite pronounced - Reade makes mention of it - on page 166 (this is in the photograph section, the pages aren't numbered but it works out to that page number.)

Hope this is of some help.

Warmest regards to you both,
Cook
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Thanks Michael and Pat,
I had proposed a thought to Dave Gittins offline regarding this very passage from Beesley's story. I had conjectured that Beesley was mistaken that it was lunch, but was more dinner time due to the fact that he knows the position of the ship for the day (normally an hour process begun at noon) and the steward already had the information regarding it and where he thought they'd be on Wednesday. The ship changed course at about 5:40pm and I had thought that the hard listing to port would have been caused by a change in heading. But Dave did not think that would cause it. Also, given a tendency for distortion when taking photos from given angles could the "list" in the photo just be an illusion. Or is this something to be looked into? Any experts out there?
Fond warm regards to you to....Maureen.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Hello, Pat, and thanks for including Beesley's comments. Few ships are ever in such perfect trim that they aren't a little off kilter to one side or another. The last ship I was on had a tendency to lean to port when in a light condition. Probably because of the massive sponson which supported the angled flight deck. It was a bit of an irritant too as the drains weren't angled down so waste water would frequently flow "downhill" to well up out of the drain in my dry cleaning plant. If we didn't close the drain, we would find up to 4 inches of water on the deck.

Mo, I wish I could help you on the photography question, but that's way outside the scope of my knowladge. Do you have a copy of the photo in question? If so, where was it taken? Tied to the peir, anchored someplace?

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Hey there Michael. Pat Cook had mentioned the book just above us here somewhere, "The Ship that Stood Still" by Reade. He had said that that book contained the photo. That unfortunately is not one of the books that I own, so I do not know about that reference. I am more familar with the Beesley reference in his book. But was refering to Pat's mention of the list in the photo. Pat, are you there? Was the ship tied to the pier or anchored somewhere? Where was it taken? See Michael Standarts commetn above. Maureen.
 

Pat Cook

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Dear Mo and Mike,

Can't really add much to what I said before. However, this is written under that photo:

"Last look at the Titanic from Southampton as she steamed to open water on her way to Cherbourg. Note her slight list to port"

I was trying to find more corrobration for Beesley's comment when I found the Reade entry.

Hope this is of some help,

As ever,
Cook
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Hmmmmmm...perhaps the ship was starting a turn to the right. Whenever a ship turns at any useful speed, it always heels over slightly in the opposite direction of the turn. The greater the speed, the greater the list.

Maybe I have that photo in my other books. If not, then I have another book to order. I hope it's not out of print. That seems to be a problem with the really useful stuff.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
Sep 12, 2000
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So could the change in course straighteningout more to the right (nearly due west) at 5:40pm have made the ship seem to be listing to the port side as Beesley was eating his dinner meal?
Maureen.
 

Pat Cook

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Another quick note here regarding Beesley. You have to remember he also stated he had noticed the list to port BEFORE - not just during that meal. This is the reason I was trying to corroborate his statement and the Reade photo is the only such item I have found so far.

Can't say one way or another if the ship is turning as the Reade photo was taken, which, as you say, would give her a momentary list. It looks as if she's heading out to sea but who knows?

As ever,
Cook
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Mo, once the ship has completed her turn, she'll return to her original trim. If the list was there to begin with, she'll go back to whatever it was.

Pat, I checked out Amazon.com. Unfortunately, The Ship That Stood Still is out of print. C'est livre.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Thanks Mike and Pat for the information.

Pat, I guess what I was trying to say was that the meal being presented as "lunch" may have been in error on Mr Beesley's part due to the fact that the ships sourse was normally computed beginning at noon and generally took about an hour to perform and then presented to the Captain (is that correct) and then it would be posted. The conversation that Beesley has is that he has already found out about the location posting and distance calcuations have been made that he has seen or been advised of by a steward. If as stated, his noting would have had to occured prior to lunch, but this would have had to have occured after 1pm. That coupled with his observation about the listing just made me think that his observation of the list was around the time of the course change and the siting of the location postings would have been made prior to the meal.

After the sinking and resue, now Beesley is rethinking all that occured that particular day and he sites the oddities that he has noted during his day like the listing issue. I guess we will never know all of this and must take the witnesses testimopnies as given. I just thought it was something interesting. That's all.

You write plays...Shear Madness-on the Titanic Express could be one. But if you use our real names....well...
Maureen.
 

Pat Cook

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Excellent point, Maureen.

Even though Beesley wrote his book shortly after the catastrophe he probably did 'condense' some of his thoughts and memories, as regards the ship's movements and mileage postings, etc.

"Shear Madness" - geez, is that thing STILL running?

Best regards,
Cook
 
Sep 12, 2000
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YES to the shearmadness question. And humble apologies to the master of Beesley...what a great article you wrote....you are totally bad though...not even a hint to your poor defenseless friends that you are an expert at this stuff while we make ramblings of which we really know nothing about...I am an expert at that....not Beesley...of making ramblings of which I know nothing about.

Your point about the "condense" of thoughts and memories is a very valid point too.

I also wonder about the reporter person on the Carpathia. At times just having someone else asking you questions in a way while the memory is still fresh in your mind makes one think a specific way when that is not what was happening. I wonder how many people or who the people were that that reporteer interviewed and how that may have impacted their stories? Although Beesley seems to be a very self-defined person.

Just wanted to ssay again how much I enjoyed reading your article Pat. Did you write it first or did you contact Phil first to say your idea and then write it? Maureen.
 

Pat Cook

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Dear Mo,

>I also wonder about the reporter person on the Carpathia.<

You need to read "Carlos Hurd - The Titanic Man" by John and Vera Gillespie, Amereon Press. He was the reporter on the Carpathia. Amazing story and well written, too.

As to my article, Phil and I had been talking about it in N Y and when I got back he sent me a follow up note on it.

I am tickled you enjoyed it!

Warmest regards,
Cook
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Dear Pat,
So did you discuss the idea of it in NY and he wrote to you and you wrote it or did you write it first and present the first draft idea to him and then begin the work of editing to final?

I guess that I am curious how to approach Phil with the idea of writing a book or article in the first place. Not that Phil is this big hairy guy that I need to be concerned...but I just wanted to know how the process works from someone who's been there done that.

Well, maybe I should ask Phil since you are a big hairy guy... he he....anyway I feel like I can ask you and not really trouble Phil with this silly stuff. You've been through the process not only as a professional in your own right as a writer of plays...with proposals and what not, but you have experienced writing and posting here. Which is pretty scarey in and of itself. Maybe it will build character in me. At 26, Ing is an incredible person also and when I grow up I want to be like Ing.

Maureen.
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Pat,
Forgot to add that I have written down your recommendation of the Carlos Hurd-The titanic man book by the gillespies. Thanks for that recommendation. Maureen.
 

Pat Cook

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Dear Mo,

Regarding the article, just do what I did with Phil - sit on his chest until he can't breathe anymore.

Actually, we were both at a convention in NY recently and I approached him with the idea of the article. Fortunately, I had along a copy of my entire Beesley project at the time, so I was able to show him a few bits. We talked about me putting together a short piece for E T. Then, three weeks ago, when I got back home I started the first draft. When I got it to where I thought it was ready for a read, I sent it to Phil and, basically, that's how it all came about.

My guess is to send him a note, detailing your idea for an article. That's pretty much how I did it.

Actually, for a hairless sort of fellow, he's really not so bad...if you don't stare at his eleven toes. The REALLY odd thing is...they're not on his feet!

Warmest regards,
Cook
 

Erik Wood

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I heard a story of in which a reporter jumped about Carpathia and passed up her third officer who was trying to keep reporters off. Once Rostrom found out about his he ordered him the bridge where he was forced to stay until the ship docked. I also I tend to agree that shifting coal had probably already occured with the fires and all and as bulkeheads i.e. boiler room six collapsed coal then shifted again. I do believe that there would have been a starboard list after she hit yes. Also another question would be when Smith came out of his cabin. Were the engines still full astern and the wheel would have been hard to port? Murdoch tried to port round it didn't he? I read in either Triumph and Tragedy or the discovery channel book that smith orderd half ahead then all stop. So that would have made it from full astern (Murdoch) to half ahead breifly (Smith) then all stop (Smith). Right?
I am probably wrong but asking just the same. I think Smith went from Full Astern to Stop.

Erik
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Thanks Pat. Actually I was really into the sitting on his chest part and then you had to bring up the 11 toes. But thanks for the information.

Erik. The things that you have shared are great. IF he did, how would that impact what happened. If he didn;t, how would it impact as well.

Maureen (your favorite soup stirrer).
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Martin, thanks for the link. I got one of those Page Not Found things, so I'll try again later. Their server is probably having hiccups.

Erik, the Titanics final manuevring orders are one of the reasons I wouldn't mind seeing the scrap log recovered if it even exists to be recovered. I don't think that one has ever been resolved, though I could be wrong. Looks like I'll be diving into the investigation transcripts to see what the witnesses had to say on the matter.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
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