Message to the Virginian Can see Carpathia


Paul Lee

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Aug 11, 2003
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Dear all,
I've just found this website:


listing the messages sent to/from the Virginian. I really need someone to confirm that I am not going doolally and missing something obvious.
For one thing, the PV is in New York Time, not ships time - secondly the Californian's message saying "Can see Carpathia" etc. is absent.

Am I missing something here?

Best wishes

Paul
 

Dave Gittins

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Paul, you have not gone doolally. The evidence for the claimed exchange between Evans and Virginian is not to be found outside the press and Lord's story.

I'll stick to the idea that Gambell mixed ship's time and NYT in the press story.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Paul, if you don't have a copy of Titanic, Signals of Disaster handy, you might find This Website and This Website to be useful for some quick reference work.


 

Paul Lee

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When I first posted this thread, I had, in the back of my mind, the notion that Evans must have been receiving messages from the bridge in order for him to say "can now see Carpathia", but could find no evidence pro-or-con to support this. But now, I realise that there is further proof; on 15/4/12, Evans was jamming a lot of the wireless traffic, and one of the topics of discussion was the mysterious black and white funnel steamer that the Californian had seen when en-route to the disaster area.

Cheers

Paul

 

Dave Gittins

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Black and white funnel steamer? I know of no source for that. Evans raved on about a pink and black funnel steamer, namely his own. I used to think he meant another ship, but the context shows he meant Californian.

As you mention, there was a lot of jamming going on that morning. I can't see how Evans could have replied to Gambell as quickly as Lord's foes make out. I think that Lord's account, unfiltered by the press, is correct and that his timing of the reply is about right.
 

Dave Gittins

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A tipple? I mess things up while stone sober!

Why is it that when I produce a masterpiece of literature on the screen, it's full of typos when it's printed out?
 
Mar 22, 2003
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What the mind sees is sometimes not was is seen by the eye. Is that not the lesson of all this?
happy.gif
 
Jun 18, 2007
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"secondly the Californian's message saying "Can see Carpathia" etc. is absent"

Why have I never even heard of this?!!!!Seriously...what's the background on this "Dude, I think I saw the Carpathia!" message?

"Why is it that when I produce a masterpiece of literature on the screen, it's full of typos when it's printed out?"

I believe it's called "unintentional chaotic genius"...or a tetchy computer.
 
Jan 21, 2001
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Hi Kritina:

The message you are asking about came from an interview that Capt Gambell of the VA gave to the British Press, and was printed in a few different papers at the time. Boiled down, sometime just before 6am, the Virginian gave the Californian the heads-up about the Titanic, and a little while later, asked the Californian to call back with details once they arrived at the disaster scene. According to Capt Gambell, the Californian replied almost immediately, "Can now see Carpathia taking on passengers from small boats." This exchange is not found in the inquiries, since Gambell did not give testimony. It's hinted at in Lord's testimony in the US however.

The rub is that Lord allows around an hour and a half between his first and second communication with the Virginian. Yet Gambell's press statement puts the two messages within half an hour of each other... and the implication is, that the Californian was much nearer the scene than she later let on.

On one hand, it might be tempting to dismiss Gambell's account as press puffery, but there are two points to consider before doing so. Gambell made his statement to the press *before* there was any hint that the Californian had mis-behaved, and he (Gambell) had no reason to invent this detail. Secondly, it's *somewhat* corroborated by Grove's account of when he was awakened by Stewart on the Californian. Groves said he was called around 6:40 am and that Stewart told him "The Titanic has sunk and her passengers are in lifeboats in the water ahead of us."

I won't attempt to go into precise times of who said what and when, because I don't think it's do-able. But the above summarizes the gist of it, I think.

I have a summary of it on my website, with more specific citations:

http://home.earthlink.net/~dnitzer

Dave Billnitzer
 

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