News from 1894 RUN DOWN BY THE BIG MAJESTIC


Mark Baber

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MAB Note: The "Monday" referred to in the first sentence was 30 July.

The New-York Times, 2 August 1894

RUN DOWN BY THE BIG MAJESTIC
---
The Schooner Antelope Sunk Off the Banks and Two Lives Lost
---
The Majestic of the White Star Line arrived yesterday with part of the
crew of the fishing schooner Antelope of Burin, N. F., which she sank
off the Banks on Monday morning. The crew of the Antelope consisted of
eight men, six of whom were saved.

The Majestic had been running in a thick fog for two days before she
struck the Antelope. While running at half speed and blowing her fog
horn incessantly, shortly after 3:30 o'clock Monday morning, the forward
watch reported a vessel right across the bows.

From the bridge full speed astern was immediately rung, and every effort
was made to stop the steamship. The headway was so great, however, that
before the reverse action of her screws could affect her she struck the
schooner and cut clean through her, a little abaft her main hatch.

The shock to the huge Majestic was scarcely perceptible, but the cries
of those on board the schooner aroused many of the passengers and crew
of the steamship. Immediately the crew of the Majestic were called to
their stations and the lifeboats were lowered. While the Majestic was
coming about the First Officer lowered his boat and put off to the
wreck. After she came about and stopped near the wreck, two other boats
got away and pulled for the sinking schooner.

Three lifeboats were at once lowered---two from the port side and one
from starboard. They were in charge respectively of First Officer J. T.
Shenton, with five men; Chief Officer Atchison, with five men, and
Second Officer J. R. Ranson, with six men. The last named, being nearest
the schooner, reached the sinking vessel first. This boat rescued five
men. One, the cook, had been asleep on the deck when the schooner was
struck, and several of his ribs were broken. He was hoisted to the
Majestic's deck by means of a chair and sling. All the men were more or
less bruised by flying splinters.

William Woundy was seen by the men in the First Officer's boat clinging
to a piece of floating wreckage. He was badly hurt. They rowed toward
him, but he let go his hold and sank. Quartermaster Jones, who was one
of the boat's crew, dived overboard, and when he came up he had Woundy
in his arms. Both were pulled into the lifeboat. Woundy was placed in a
sling chair and hoisted to the Majestic's deck, but he died in twenty
minutes.

The third boat picked up one man, and a careful search was made for
Gabriel Mitchell, aged eighteen, a native of Burin, N. F., who was below
when the steamship struck the Antelope, but he was not found, and it was
supposed that he had been swept overboard at the time of the collision.
The Majestic's boats were in the davits and she was steaming on her
course an hour after the collision. The Antelope still lay floating on
her beam ends, and is likely to float about in the path of ocean liners
off the Banks until she shall become waterlogged.

Capt. John Bugden of the Antelope said that until the prow of the
Majestic loomed through the fog not a suspicion of her presence was felt
by the schooner's crew.

"There was not time to think," said he. "Those of us who were on deck
plunged overboard. The Majestic's crew worked like heroes to rescue us.
Every attention was lavished upon us by the officers and crew of the
liner, and we are very grateful for their consideration."

Some members of the Antelope's crew told the officers of the Majestic,
according to the First Officer's story, that they had heard her whistle
three times. To others they said they had no warning till she was upon
them.

The Antelope was of thirty-two tons burden. She was owned by Capt. John
Bugden and his brothers, Thomas, Henry, Philip, and Reuben, all of whom
were on board.

A concert was given on board the Majestic for the benefit of those who
had been rescued and Woundy's widow. Sir John Gorst, M. P., presided,
and the receipts amounted to $1,800. From this, the rescuers will each
receive £1, and the remainder will be properly divided. The money has
been deposited, while awaiting division, with President Baker of the
First National Bank.
 

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