Survivors near the middle section -


TitanicLove

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Jan 29, 2013
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Can someone provide me a list of the survivors near the middle of the ship when it went down - in other words, who survived from the area around where the ship broke in two? Perhaps they didn't see the ship break, but were still in the vicinity. The only survivors that I know of are Olaus Abelseth and his family, near the fourth funnel. These are the stories I'm curious about, because in many Titanic books and stories, the focus is usually on the group of people struggling with the lifeboats towards the bow. Who else survived near the 3rd and 4th funnels?
 

L. Colombo

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Nov 22, 2012
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Some time ago, in another thread, I tried to find the location of all the people who where still on board when the final plunge began, and survived. My results:

1. Peter Dennis Daly: on boat deck, helping a woman to jump overboard and then preparing he himself to jump, when “a big wave came sweeping along the Boat Deck, washing him clear of the ship”. This wave should have been the “tidal wave” which washed away the forward end of the Boat Deck when the bridge was underwater. So Daly was probably somewhere in the forward end of the Boat Deck, possibly starboard side (since he ended up in collapsible A).

2. George Alexander Lucien Rheims: jumping in the sea from starboard side, amidships, near the gymnasium (Limitation of Liability hearing).

3. Richard Norris Williams II: near the gymnasium along with his father Charles Duane Williams, when the water flooded the deck? Possibly a little more forward, on Boat Deck between the first and the second funnel, since his father was killed by the falling of the first funnel and he himself narrowly escaped it? Starboard side (since he reached collapsible A)?

4. Rhoda Mary Abbott: forward end of Boat Deck, starboard side, near collapsible A. Trying to step onto collapsible A along with her sons Eugene and Rossmore when they were all swept away by the “tidal wave”.

5. Olaus Jørgensen Abelseth: portside, Boat Deck (he said “top deck”), near the fourth funnel, along with his cousin Peter Søholt and his brother-in-law Sigurd Hansen Moen (who did not survive).

6. Carl Olof Jansson: starboard side, possibly near the forward end of the boat deck and not far from collapsible A?

7. Oscar Wilhelm Olsson/Johansson: near the forward end of Boat Deck, starboard side, non far from collapsible A?

8. David Vartanian: unknown?

9. August Edvard Andersson/Wennerström: trying to go towards the stern along with Gunnar Isidor Tenglin (possibly), the Lindells and the Pålsson children, but sliding back (since the deck had become to steep) and ending up in the forward end of the boat deck, starboard side, near collapsible A?

10. Gunnar Isidor Tenglin (if he did not leave in boat 15): see above.

11. Edward Brown: forward end of Boat Deck, starboard side, working at collapsible A (and also jumping into it when the water flooded the deck, but only to be washed over by the “tidal wave”).

12. William A. Lucas: unknown?

13. William McIntyre: unknown?

14. William John Mellors: forward end of boat deck, working at a collapsible boat when the “tidal wave” came. Probably this collapsible was A, so starboard side, even if it seems that Mellors ended up saved in B.

15. James Thompson: unknown?

16. August H. Weikman: forward end of boat deck, starboard side, working at collapsible A when he was washed overboard by the “tidal wave”.

17. Harold Charles William Phillimore: I’ve not found any detailed account about him. I know he floated for some time on a piece of wood along with another survivor, who died, before he was rescued by No. 14 (has this second man ever been identified?), but where was he when the ship sank?

18. John Collins: forward end of boat deck, starboard side, not far from collapsible A. He had started heading for the stern along with a woman, her two children and a steward, when they were all washed overboard by the “tidal wave”. I saw a diagram placing him somewhere around the davits of No. 7 boat.

19. Charles John Joughin: poop deck (but on the side of the ship, not on deck), starboard side, holding the rail on the outside. He stayed there until the ship sank completely.

20. Walter Hurst: forward end of boat deck, starboard side, working at collapsible A. He apparently jumped overboard slightly before the “tidal wave” came.

21. Victor Sunderland: forward end of boat deck, port side, near collapsible B. He jumped overboard when the water began to flood the deck.

22. Patrick O’Keefe: he reportedly jumped in the sea along with Victor Sunderland and Edward Dorking, so see above.

23. Edward Arthur Dorking: see above. But in an interview he claimed he climbed to a railing and then jumped from 40 feet.

24. Ernest Frederick Allen: jumped in the water from boat deck, but from where?

25. Harold Sidney Bride: forward end of boat deck, port side, near collapsible B. Swept away by the “tidal wave”.

26. Albert Johan Moss: forward end of boat deck, port side, working at collapsible B when he was swept away by the “tidal wave”.

27. Eugene Patrick Daly: forward end of boat deck, port side, working at collapsible B?

28. Sidney Edward Daniels: forward end of boat deck, port side, near the bridge and collapsible B. He jumped in the sea when the water began flooding the deck.

29. Cecil William Fitzpatrick: forward end of boat deck, starboard side, working at collapsible A?

30. Albert William Hebb: unknown?

31. Archibald Gracie IV: boat deck, starboard side, near the officer mess, along with James Clinch Smith. They had just left the men working at collapsible A and headed towards the stern, when the water flooded the deck. I found a diagram indicating Gracie’s position as boat deck, starboard side, around either No. 3 or No. 5 davits.

32. Charles Herbert Lightoller: on top of the officer’s quarters, starboard side, when he was swept into the sea by the “tidal wave”.

33. John Borland Thayer jr.: boat deck, starboard side, along with Milton Long. They jumped into the sea, but I can’t understand exactly from where. Since once in the water he was nearly crushed by the falling of the second funnel, perhaps he was on the starboard side of the boat deck near the second funnel. Also for Thayer I found a diagram, showing his position as boat deck, starboard side, a little aft of the second funnel.

34. Robert Williams Daniels: stern top deck (poop deck, extreme stern), he jumped into the sea just before the stern was submerged. (From Dillon’s account)

35. Thomas Patrick Dillon: stern top deck (poop deck, extreme stern), along with fellow firemen John Bannon, Dennis Cochrane, Thomas Blake and J. Mason. He stayed there until the ship sank completely.

36. Frank George Prentice: stern, port side, holding on the rail near the “Notice. This vessel has triple screws. Keep clear of blades” sign along with Cyril Ricks and M. Kieran. He jumped in the sea from an height of about 75 feet, narrowly missing the propellers, when the stern was almost vertical.

37. Alfred White: near the fourth funnel or even on top of it (but most likely on port side, near the davits of Boat 16)

38. Thomas Arthur Whiteley: forward end of boat deck, starboard side, working at collapsible A?

39. Andrew Cunningham: either somewhere on port side (along with Sidney Conrad Siebert), preparing to jump into the sea (is it clear where was he when he jumped into the sea? I’m not even sure he was on the port side, I assumed this because he swam to no. 4 that was lowered on the port side. Probably somewhere near the stern, since nearly all the known swimmers saved by No. 4 were on the stern), or already in the water.

40. Samuel Ernest Hemming: either on port side, climbing down No. 15 boat falls to the sea, or already in the water swimming towards No. 4 boat, or already in No. 4 after having swum to it.

41. Fang Lang: unknown?

42. Eustace Philip Snow: forward end of boat deck, starboard side, working at collapsible A?

43. Henry Senior: forward end of boat deck, working at a collapsible. A or B?

44. Charles Edward Judd: unknown?

45. James McGann: forward end of boat deck, port side, working at collapsible B.

46. John O’Connor: unknown?

47. George Alexander Prangnell: unknown?

48. William Charles Lindsay: unknown? (“I was on the ship till the water came up to the funnel and got away on a raft”, the raft is collapsible B).

49. Isaac Hiram Maynard: unknown?

50. Algernon Henry Wilson Barkworth: He jumped in the sea from the starboard side of boat deck, but from where?

51. Emilio Ilario Giuseppe Portaluppi: unknown?

So the people in the middle of the ship or breakdown area should be only Olaus Abelseth and Alfred White, both on port side. Most of the others were in the forward part of the boat deck (the majority working at the two collapsibles A and B) and a few in the stern.
 

TitanicLove

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Jan 29, 2013
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That's a GREAT list L. Colombo! Thank you! Now question - other than the "famous" survivors (Lightoller, Thayer, Bride, etc.) which of those survivors have the most interesting story? If Alfred White's story about climbing the fourth funnel is true, then it would be among the top 5, along with the Baker Charles Joughin, and Olaus Abelseth. I wish we knew more about Mr. Fang Lang, like how he built his raft, and where he was during the sinking. It seems the Asian survivors didn't talk much about their ordeal, or at least it wasn't recorded as well as the English, American, and European survivors.

Once again, thank you for the list. I'll have to copy and save it for future reference.
 

L. Colombo

Member
Nov 22, 2012
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Well, Fang Lang wasn't on a raft, he just saved himself by floating on a door (maybe even lashing himself to the door) and being then saved by No. 14. I've never found any account about him, but years ago, in the older version of this forum, his son/grandson (Tom K. Wong I think was his name) appeared and said he (Fang Lang) ended as a rich supporter of Chiang Kai-Shiek and living in Taiwan. He had told his relatives something about his surviving the Titanic, but he had never mentioned the ship's name, so they thought it had been a shipwreck in the Chinese Sea.

Another interesting story, IMO, is that of the greaser Walter Hurst, who survived on collapsible B and claimed that he recognized Captain Smith swimming near to collapsible B and then freezing to death while he (Hurst) tried to hand out to him an oar. Here his two letters to Walter Lord: http://www.paullee.com/titanic/whurst.html.
 

L. Colombo

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Nov 22, 2012
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Also trimmer Thomas Patrick Dillon, who perhaps gave the most detailed accounts among the (very few) survivors from the stern. His enquiry testimony: TIP | British Wreck Commissioner's Inquiry | Day 5 | Testimony of Thomas P. Dillon (Trimmer, SS Titanic) and an interview he gave to the 'Herald Sun': No Cookies | Herald Sun (I'll post it because this link seems to give me problems):

June 27, 1912 . We publish to-day the full narrative of Thomas Patrick Dillon, who told Lord Mersey, “I went down with the Titanic,” and was rescued after a long period of swimming in the icy water, said The Daily Mail on May 13.

This narrative brings out the nature of the final scene in a manner that no previous account has done.

Dillon, it will be remembered, gave evidence last week before the Titanic Commission.

He related the following to a representative of the Daily Mail.

I was working in the engine-room, looking round like, when I heard the telephone ring.

I rushed to the door. Instinct told me somehow that something was going to happen. All the engineers who were in the engine room rushed to the pumps.

Mr Escot (my note: Hesketh), the second engineer, was among them. We of course knew nothing of what was happening on deck. The engineers seemed to come down then all in a bunch.

The after engine-room door was lifted up half way, enough for us to crawl under. All the water-tight doors were opened by us with the handle, but the chief engineer told us not to touch No. 5 door as that was finished.
Those steward chaps and deck hands died game, no mistake, sir
After about what seemed to be an hour the chief said, ‘Look after yourselves,’ and then ‘All hands on deck’ was the next cry I heard. We were told to put lifebelts on.

There was a pile of lifebelts on the steerage deck, enough for everyone. They were all loose, so that all could help themselves.

We chased two women on the well deck to the poop deck. That deck was full of third-class male passengers.

Those steward chaps and deck hands died game, no mistake, sir.

One fellow while we were on the poop deck said, ‘Go to the first class cabin bar-room.’ We did, the there was a steward in the saloon with two whisky bottles, one in each hand, filling up tumblers on a tray. He said, ‘Go on, lads, drink up; she is going down,’ and we made for the whisky. We got our share.

A LAST CIGARETTE

I saw Mr Bell, the chief engineer, with a plank under his arm walking along the promenade deck.

The ship was going down all this time.

That was the last I saw of him. He must have ‘dumped’ himself.

I said to my pal, Mattie Blake, ‘What do you say, Mattie, there are only two ends – there’s the fore end, which is underneath, and we will take the other end.’

I was for going down into one of the first-class cabins, but Mattie would not let me go.

So we passed along to the promenade deck, on to the well deck, and then to the top deck, and there were Dennis Cochrane, John Bannon, and others of our engine crew.

Mattie said to me, ‘What about your boots? We shall have to jump for it, as all the boats are gone.’
I noticed one of the chaps who was standing there found a cigarette paper, another had enough tobacco to have a fag, and we had a draw or two while it lasted. There we stood smoking it.

Then she plunged and then seemed to right herself.

There were about fifteen of us when she took the first plunge.

After the second there were only five of us left.

One of these was Mr Daniels, a first-class passenger. He only had a pair of knickers, a singlet, and a blanket thrown over his shoulders.

I think he jumped for it. I stood talking to Johnny Bannon, and we seemed to be the only two left.

We made the sign of the cross, both of us, for he was a Catholic. ‘If we are going to die,’ I said, ‘it will be best to die gripping something,’ We gripped the rail, and the next thing I remember – O! it’s awful – I came among a lot of people groaning.
It was too cold it seemed for them to cry out, and it was a horrible row.

The first man I saw I knew was John Bannon. One fellow put his arm round me, I choked him off.

I got away from the crowd, as I was going to die by myself. I said ‘Our Father’ and ‘Hail, Mary.’

SWIMMING BY A STAR

One young man near me shouted, ‘Mother, mother!’ I was getting a little bit away from the throng when a man who was swimming alongside me clutched me round the neck.

I knew, of course, that that would be fatal, so I seized him by the throat and we both went under.

When we came up we were clear and he swam away.
Behind me there was the horrible volume of the groans, which rose and fell, I can hear it now
It was really remarkable that there was so little clutching. I think a large number of people soon gave up the struggle, and were content to die, for the water was so fearfully cold, and there seemed no hope of rescue.

When at last I got comparatively clear I swam as though I were taking part in a race.

Behind me there was the horrible volume of the groans, which rose and fell, I can hear it now.

I know there were some women on board when the ship went down, but I saw neither woman nor child in the water.
“Swimming on, I came up to my chum, John Bannon, who was lying on a grating.

It was not big enough for two, but I rested my arms on it for a minute. I said, “Cheero, Johnny,” and he replied, ‘I am all right, Paddy.’ Then he told me he had seen a flash-light some distance away, and pointed out the direction.

I took note of a particularly bright star in the line he pointed out and swam for that, but I had not myself seen the light.

As I went off I cried out, ‘Well, so long Johnny.’ Poor chap, he was drowned.

Every minute or so I looked up to make sure I was going towards the star.

All this time I had not seen a single lifeboat. Soon I became so numbed that I could hardly swim, and my head was so queer that I could not see my guiding star.

I could see no lifeboat, but when I was almost at my last gasp I shouted ‘Boat ahoy!’ on the off chance that one might be near.

Fortunately one was close at hand, my shout was heard, and I was hauled into lifeboat No. 4. I think I had been twenty minutes in the water.

I was told afterwards that I was unconscious for a long time. I would rather die a hundred times than go through such an experience again.

At the inquiry I should liked to have said something besides being asked questions, as I was a sailor for 22 years in the Navy and Mercantile Marine.

I was petty officer for seven years in the Royal Navy, and am now a Royal Garrison Reserve man.

I had to go as a trimmer, as I could not get a job on deck. I am going away next in the Olympic (Titanic’s sister ship) as fireman.
 

L. Colombo

Member
Nov 22, 2012
53
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46
Also trimmer Thomas Patrick Dillon, who perhaps gave the most detailed accounts among the (very few) survivors from the stern. His enquiry testimony: TIP | British Wreck Commissioner's Inquiry | Day 5 | Testimony of Thomas P. Dillon (Trimmer, SS Titanic) and an interview he gave to the 'Herald Sun': No Cookies | Herald Sun (I'll post it because this link seems to give me problems):

"June 27, 1912 . We publish to-day the full narrative of Thomas Patrick Dillon, who told Lord Mersey, “I went down with the Titanic,” and was rescued after a long period of swimming in the icy water, said The Daily Mail on May 13.

This narrative brings out the nature of the final scene in a manner that no previous account has done.

Dillon, it will be remembered, gave evidence last week before the Titanic Commission.

He related the following to a representative of the Daily Mail.

I was working in the engine-room, looking round like, when I heard the telephone ring.

I rushed to the door. Instinct told me somehow that something was going to happen. All the engineers who were in the engine room rushed to the pumps.

Mr Escot (my note: Hesketh), the second engineer, was among them. We of course knew nothing of what was happening on deck. The engineers seemed to come down then all in a bunch.

The after engine-room door was lifted up half way, enough for us to crawl under. All the water-tight doors were opened by us with the handle, but the chief engineer told us not to touch No. 5 door as that was finished.
Those steward chaps and deck hands died game, no mistake, sir
After about what seemed to be an hour the chief said, ‘Look after yourselves,’ and then ‘All hands on deck’ was the next cry I heard. We were told to put lifebelts on.

There was a pile of lifebelts on the steerage deck, enough for everyone. They were all loose, so that all could help themselves.

We chased two women on the well deck to the poop deck. That deck was full of third-class male passengers.

Those steward chaps and deck hands died game, no mistake, sir.

One fellow while we were on the poop deck said, ‘Go to the first class cabin bar-room.’ We did, the there was a steward in the saloon with two whisky bottles, one in each hand, filling up tumblers on a tray. He said, ‘Go on, lads, drink up; she is going down,’ and we made for the whisky. We got our share.

A LAST CIGARETTE

I saw Mr Bell, the chief engineer, with a plank under his arm walking along the promenade deck.

The ship was going down all this time.

That was the last I saw of him. He must have ‘dumped’ himself.

I said to my pal, Mattie Blake, ‘What do you say, Mattie, there are only two ends – there’s the fore end, which is underneath, and we will take the other end.’

I was for going down into one of the first-class cabins, but Mattie would not let me go.

So we passed along to the promenade deck, on to the well deck, and then to the top deck, and there were Dennis Cochrane, John Bannon, and others of our engine crew.

Mattie said to me, ‘What about your boots? We shall have to jump for it, as all the boats are gone.’
I noticed one of the chaps who was standing there found a cigarette paper, another had enough tobacco to have a fag, and we had a draw or two while it lasted. There we stood smoking it.

Then she plunged and then seemed to right herself.

There were about fifteen of us when she took the first plunge.

After the second there were only five of us left.

One of these was Mr Daniels, a first-class passenger. He only had a pair of knickers, a singlet, and a blanket thrown over his shoulders.

I think he jumped for it. I stood talking to Johnny Bannon, and we seemed to be the only two left.

We made the sign of the cross, both of us, for he was a Catholic. ‘If we are going to die,’ I said, ‘it will be best to die gripping something,’ We gripped the rail, and the next thing I remember – O! it’s awful – I came among a lot of people groaning.
It was too cold it seemed for them to cry out, and it was a horrible row.

The first man I saw I knew was John Bannon. One fellow put his arm round me, I choked him off.

I got away from the crowd, as I was going to die by myself. I said ‘Our Father’ and ‘Hail, Mary.’

SWIMMING BY A STAR

One young man near me shouted, ‘Mother, mother!’ I was getting a little bit away from the throng when a man who was swimming alongside me clutched me round the neck.

I knew, of course, that that would be fatal, so I seized him by the throat and we both went under.

When we came up we were clear and he swam away.
Behind me there was the horrible volume of the groans, which rose and fell, I can hear it now
It was really remarkable that there was so little clutching. I think a large number of people soon gave up the struggle, and were content to die, for the water was so fearfully cold, and there seemed no hope of rescue.

When at last I got comparatively clear I swam as though I were taking part in a race.

Behind me there was the horrible volume of the groans, which rose and fell, I can hear it now.

I know there were some women on board when the ship went down, but I saw neither woman nor child in the water.
“Swimming on, I came up to my chum, John Bannon, who was lying on a grating.

It was not big enough for two, but I rested my arms on it for a minute. I said, “Cheero, Johnny,” and he replied, ‘I am all right, Paddy.’ Then he told me he had seen a flash-light some distance away, and pointed out the direction.

I took note of a particularly bright star in the line he pointed out and swam for that, but I had not myself seen the light.

As I went off I cried out, ‘Well, so long Johnny.’ Poor chap, he was drowned.

Every minute or so I looked up to make sure I was going towards the star.

All this time I had not seen a single lifeboat. Soon I became so numbed that I could hardly swim, and my head was so queer that I could not see my guiding star.

I could see no lifeboat, but when I was almost at my last gasp I shouted ‘Boat ahoy!’ on the off chance that one might be near.

Fortunately one was close at hand, my shout was heard, and I was hauled into lifeboat No. 4. I think I had been twenty minutes in the water.

I was told afterwards that I was unconscious for a long time. I would rather die a hundred times than go through such an experience again.

At the inquiry I should liked to have said something besides being asked questions, as I was a sailor for 22 years in the Navy and Mercantile Marine.

I was petty officer for seven years in the Royal Navy, and am now a Royal Garrison Reserve man.

I had to go as a trimmer, as I could not get a job on deck. I am going away next in the Olympic (Titanic’s sister ship) as fireman.
"
 

TitanicLove

Member
Jan 29, 2013
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I see you referenced the site paullee.com. I wanted to ask about one story on this site... http://www.paullee.com/titanic/sinking.php If you skip to the bottom, THE PUZZLE OF BOAT B, there is speculation that the Titanic was turning underwater, based on the fact that Boat B drifted past the first funnel, and on the fact that the breakup started on the starboard side. I was going to ask if this is widely accepted as true? Could it be the wave was the Titanic going down AND turning slightly underwater? Has this been discussed before?
 

L. Colombo

Member
Nov 22, 2012
53
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46
Well, several survivors mentioned that in the last stages of the sinking the ship developed a slight list to port (which for example prevented collapsible A from being dragged towards the davits of No. 1 boat); Joughin, on the stern, even said that the ship listed to port so much that everyone else fell to port (testimony: TIP | British Wreck Commissioner's Inquiry | Day 6 | Testimony of Charles Joughin (Chief Baker, SS Titanic)), although I think Joughin was exaggerating. I don't know if the Titanic turned underwater; could be due to the combinated effect of going down by the bow and listing to port, maybe. If this subject has already been discussed on this forum - but I don't know - it would be in this section, I think, however.
 

TitanicLove

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Jan 29, 2013
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It would be remarkable if it did turn underwater. It also would make sense. If it's listing to port, then the weight of the water would be entering all the open windows on the port side, putting weight on that end, pulling the ship down on one end, and perhaps setting in motion a "slight" counter-clockwise turn - which would also account for the break-up starting on the starboard side (which I've heard from other Titanic experts) - and it would make sense because the stern sticking out of the water would've resisted the turn and perhaps that's what contributed to the break. In other words, the bow (underwater) is turning because water is filling the port side quicker than any other section, and as the Titanic rotates underwater, the stern section outside the water tries to remain still, but it can't, and soon it breaks apart.

Also, when the stern broke free, didn't it tip on its port side causing many people to fall into the sea? That would also point to evidence the Titanic was rotating slightly.
I don't know, this is simply speculation.
 

L. Colombo

Member
Nov 22, 2012
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Interesting point, although I'm not tecnically competent to confirm or deny such a scenario. As for the stern tipping on port side and making people fall into the sea after it broke free, where did you find mention of this? Apart for (maybe) Joughin, it seems to me that nobody among the few survivors who were on the stern mentioned such an event.
 

TitanicLove

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Jan 29, 2013
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There is a James Cameron documentary showing the timeline of the sinking. You can see it here, and they show the stern tipping on its side before it lifted back up into the air and went down straight. Here is the clip on youtube: Titanic 100 - New CGI of How Titanic Sank - YouTube (skip to 1:20)

I've also read about it in a recent National Geographic story and in a book called TITANIC AT TWO, with drawings of the stern tipped over on its side.

IF this is true (so many survivor accounts contradict each other) then it fits in with the idea that the ship was rotating as it sank.
 

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