At the Boston exhibit of Titanic artifacts, there was a wall on which were inscribed the names of those who were lost in the disaster. To these names, George Tulloch had the designer include, at the end of the list, the names of those men who were killed during the ship's construction, another detail often forgotten in consideration.
I have been trying to trace information on my Great-Grandfater.
His name was William John Kirton and went to belfast as a boilermaker and worked in Harland and Wolff up until his death in ca.1909.
He was working on either the Titanic or Olympic boilers when there was an explosion or accident which left him fatally injured. He died in hospital 4 days later.
This information I know from my Grandmother who was 4 at the time (and has since passed).
So I now imagine that as he died in hospital - outside the shipyard - there is probably no record or connection of his death being related to H&W unless other were killed at the same time, which I do not know as I dont know the date - just likely to be 1909.
Were the works for the boilers carried out within the ships? Or were they done in another part of the yard and then moved into the hulls? I ask because if the accident occurred in the ships it would more likely be recorded. (?)
Does anyone know the dates and causes of the others who died during construction - as there could be another fatality that died in the yard at the same time from the same incident and was therefore recorded?
Any information, contacts or links that anyone has would be v.appreciated. Its all very intriguing!
IF you Grandfather died as a result of an accident in the Yard, it would be recorded. Try the PRONI (Public Record Office Northern Ireland). The boilermakers at this time would have been working in the shop and not in the ship.
I would also like to get some information on my great-grandfather. His name was David Henry Kennedy. He died in April 1908 as the result of an accident in Belfast Ship Yard. He was a metal moulder and was only 21. Apparently something fell on his knee and it became gangrenous. His mother said that he came into the world with two legs and he'd leave with two legs. I'm not sure exactly when the accident happened, so I don't know how long he actual survived before his death. If it was a relatively long time, the records might not link his death with the industrial accident. I will try PRONI. Sadly, my grandfather only turned 1 year old in April 1908, so he never knew his father.
I read somewhere that a worker was killed in a fall from scaffolding on the Titanic, an electrician, if I remember correctly. The thing was he left £5000 to his wife (£2000 more than Cpt. Smith). I suppose he could have had a rich relative leave him the money. Stranger still his wife was homeless and penniless, two years later. I can recall when a house could be had for £250. Anyone come across this story?
A bit of a morbid topic but I feel this needs clearing up...
What is the official number of accidents, injuries and deaths that occurred during the construction of the Titanic?
I currently have 8 workers known to have died:
*Samuel Scott 15 - fell from scaffolding?
James Dobbin 43 - Injured removing wooden struts for Titanic's Launch May 31st 1911. Died June 2nd.
I mean no disrespect to any relatives of anyone mentioned above, this is for informative purposes only. If anyone knows anything about this, I be really grateful.
*I took info on Samuel Scott from ''Titanic: Birth Of A Legend''. However, I know some segments were dramatised so it might not be entirely accurate.