Photos taken during sinking


Adam Went

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Apr 28, 2003
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Excuse the dumb question, but I heard a story once upon a time that a survivor, whilst in the water, actually snapped a photograph of the sinking Lusitania - does anyone know whether there's any truth in this or is it a bit of an urban myth?

Cheers,
Adam.
 
May 1, 2010
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Adam, In the 1956 book "The Last Voyage Of The Lusitania" there is mention of someone "taking a couple of snaps" while standing on the rapidly inclining deck of the ship. I don't know the fate of the photographer or the photos, but had either one survived, I think we would all be very familiar with them.
 

Jim Kalafus

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Several people took photos. There was a man atop overturned 22A who took a series. Patrick Jones, AP photographer, took photos on the boat deck, but when his body was recovered the camera was gone. radioman Leith snapped a photo, as did radioman McCormick. McCormick saved his camera, and although most of the film was ruined there were two shots taken before the sinking printed in one of the papers. Elsie Hardy, who escaped by lifeboat, saved her camera, and although a friend of hers claimed to have seen the photos, Miss Hardy said they didn't come out.

There were others, but I'm working off the top of my head.

[Moderator's note: This message and the three above it, originally part of a thread addressing an unrelated subject, have been split off to form this new thread. MAB]
 

Adam Went

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Hey all,

Thanks for the responses. Do we know where copies of these couple of photos which did survive the sinking can be found now, are they available online at all?

I would imagine that 1915 camera technology didn't really allow the average camera or its film to be waterproof or drop proof, hence why many photographs which might have been taken wouldn't have survived.

Even now they're not particularly good, as i've discovered the hard way..... ;-)

Cheers,
Adam.
 

Jim Kalafus

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Two of them can be found on Encyclopedia-Titanica.

Miss Hardy returned to the US, and died here. If she saved the photos that "didn't come out" (which could mean anything from 'blurry' to 'I looked like hell in them, so I'm not going to show them to you' to 'the specific photo you asked about did not some out') they are likely somewhere in the northeastern US.

The photos from atop 22A have never surfaced. They were taken by a crew member, multiple witnesses attest to the photos being shot, but as far as I know this man never approached the papers to sell whatever could be salvaged from his film.
 

Adam Went

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Apr 28, 2003
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Thanks for that, Jim.

Might be another case of the photos "re-surfacing" in a few years or decades time when a descendant clears out an old trunk. Wouldn't be the first time! ;-)

Cheers,
Adam.
 

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