Olympic sailings in 1912

Hanco Bol

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Nov 2, 2008
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Hi,

Does anybody now the voyage numbers of the Olympic in 1912 during period February till April?

I have an abstract of log, dated February 7th from Southampton till New York with a passage of 5 days and 11 hours.

I am looking for the dates of the other voyage numbers till the Titanic sunk or captain Smith went to the Titanic.

I know the Olympic lost a propellor blade on February 24th and was back in service on March the 3rd, but there was also a voyage cancelled afterwards due to the cool strike.

Hope you have this information which will be of much help.

Thank you in advance.

Hanco
 

Mark Baber

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was back in service on March the 3rd

Actually, Hanco, she didn't leave Belfast until 7 March and she left Southampton for New York on 13 March.

I am looking for the dates of the other voyage numbers till the Titanic sunk

Smith made one more trip with Olympic after the lost-blade repairs, the 13 March departure I just mentioned, arriving at New York on 20 March. When she returned to Southampton, Smith headed to Belfast to take over Titanic. Herbert Haddock then took command of Olympic, which arrived at New York again on 10 April.

there was also a voyage cancelled afterwards due to the cool strike.

Nope; Olympic didn't lose any trips because of the coal situation.

Sources: The Times (London) and The New York Times, various dates in March and April 1912; Morton Allan Directory.
 

Hanco Bol

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Nov 2, 2008
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Thank you mark for this interested information.

So February 7th was voyage no. 8 arriving on February 12th at New York. Perhaps February 13th was voyage no. 9 arriving at Southampton on the 18th. Voyage no. 10 to NY arriving 23th and voyage no. 11 lost her propellor blade on the 24th. 13th march voyage no 12 returning to Southampton on voyage no 13 on March 20. Do you think this might be the sailing schedule at that time of the Olympic?
 
May 6, 2011
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A voyage was usually reckoned to be from home port until the ship returned to her home port. So Olympic's voyages would have been Southampton - New York - Southampton equals one voyage. This may help you figure out. Another thing, she was on the return leg of whatever number voyage when Titanic sank. One series of books you may be able to access, or someone could help with is the Morton Allan Directory which gives the arrival date of ships at New York. I don't have White Star entries, many years ago, someone photocopied the Cunard pages for me.
 

Adam Went

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Yes, Ellen touched on the fact that Olympic was also at sea when the Titanic sank, and actually responded to her Marconi wireless calls for help - though she was approximately 500 miles away at the time.

Cheers,
Adam.
 

Hanco Bol

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Nov 2, 2008
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Hi Ellen & Adam,

I am learning a lot with your knowledge.

So the sailing schedule might be:

Voyage no. 8:
-S-NY 7/2/1912 - 12/2/1912
-NY-S 12/2/1912 - 17/2/1912

Voyage no. 9:
-S-NY 17/2/1912 - 22/2/1912
-NY-S 22/2/1912 - 27/2/1912 (propellor blade missing on 24/2/1912)

Voyage no. 10:
-S-NY 13/3/1912 - 18/3/1912
-NY-S 18/3/1912 - 23/3/1912 (last voyage captain Smith on the Olympic)

For the precise call of port dates I should check the Morton Allan Directory.

Regards,
Hanco
 

Mark Baber

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So the sailing schedule might be:

You've got an extra trip in here, Hanco, and some of the dates are off. Olympic arrived at New York on 14 February and not again until 20 March and her last arrival at Southampton with Smith was 30 (not 23) March.

Where are you getting your dates from?
 

Hanco Bol

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Hi Mark,

I have attached a scan of the abstract of log I have.

The Olympic left Southampton on February 7th and arrived at New York on February 14th? Returned to Southampton and lost during this voyage on February 24th a propellor blade.

On the next voyage (no. 9) the Olympic arrived in NY on March 20 and returned and arrived in Southampton on March 30.

Is this correct?
208503.jpg
 

Mark Baber

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Without commenting on the voyage numbers you're using, the dates seem to be correct.
 
May 6, 2011
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Dear Hanco, you have not factored in the layup time at New York. Ships at that time used to have 2 or 3 days in port to load coal and stores and get ready for next voyage. Not like cruise ships today who chuck off one lot of Passengers, work like hell to get stores aboard, then take another load of passengers and sail the same day in the evening. If Olympic was fuelled in New York, it would have been coal, loaded by hand from waggons or barges. After WW1, she was converted to burn oil and so the fuel would be purchased where it was cheapest and pumped on board from a fuel barge.
 

Hanco Bol

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Hi Ellen, loading all coal and stores by hand probably took indeed several days. The same for repairing the propellor blade. Although H&W had a new propellor blade "on stock", it still took more days at that time before the Olympic was ready to sail again.

I was wondering how many sailings after voyage no. 8 were done by Smith before his last voyage took place on the Titanic. According to the information I had from you guys voyage no. 8 was his third last voyage.
 

Mark Baber

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I was wondering how many sailings after voyage no. 8 were done by Smith before his last voyage took place on the Titanic.

Only the trip you're calling voyage no. 9.
 
Dec 7, 2000
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Hanco

Olympic departed on her 10th round voyage on 3 April 1912 and was on the return leg of that voyage when Titanic sank.

Daniel
 

Hanco Bol

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Nov 2, 2008
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Hi Daniel & Mark,

Thank you for your input. At this moment I certainly have a clear view about the sailings at that time.

Hanco