I've read through the other forum posts in case someone else has already asked, but as far as I can tell, no one has.
How can I find and read the entirety of Jack Thayer's original account of April 14th/15th? I know it comes from an original 1940 publication that was very limited, but surely someone must have copied that down or digitized it by now, right? I've heard it mentioned by a lot of Titanic Historians as being a very great, humanizing account to read. Plus that's where the famous statement of "the world awoke on April 15th, 1912" from what I've been told.
Hopefully someone can help. Thanks.
There are a number of small printed booklets that I was able to pick up from the titanic historical society a number of years ago that have reports from a number of passengers and crew relative, the founding of the titanic. Keep in mind Thayer was about 17 years old at the time of the sinking, and was one of the last to jump off the ship and was fortunate enough to land close to the upturn collapsible that he and Harold McBride, and highest ranking officer, Lightoller were rescued on.
It is interesting reading, and I believe he had someone draw it. I consider a fairly accurate account of the separation of the bow and stern.
My whole take from doing research on the number of the early reports from survivors is that most aren’t credible… they are filled with human emotion, not facts. Each person who wrote a report of their experience is for the most part completely different. The two most credible reports that were in the inquiries was, of course, Harold McBride, who is a trained observer for the Marconi company, and in my opinion, the school teacher, Beesley who wrote an account in a book.
In books I have from the year of the sinking.. believe it or not…the fault, and gist of the books is, this was the sinking was an act of God, for the arrogance of man, attempting to take technology to a level that was beyond their capacity. If you think about it today, there’s still religious fanatics that would say the same thing about a tragedy of that size in today’s world.
For the vast majority of people who experienced the sinking and rescued, were haunted for the rest of their lives, for many of them, and their inability to even discuss aspects of the sinking, and in Jack Thayer‘s case, haunted him in between the death of his mother and his son in World War II, caused him to take his own life. If you look at the vast majority of those who were on board and survive, the sinking their lives did not turn out for the most part positively. This is a sad, but true fact.
One thing I always share with my presentations is that one must take your mind out of the 21st-century, and take yourself back to the turn-of-the-century one religion/faith, and the limit of man’s intellect that we take for granted today was not a predominant force at the turn of the century. Technology had not given us the analytical aspect of an NTSB investigation although in my opinion, the American inquiry was handled exceptionally well where is the English was just a whitewash based on class structure and politics.