The Last Log Of The Titanic By David G Brown


Inger Sheil

Member
Dec 3, 2000
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Hallo, George!

**“Deliberate” misstatements of fact? Whoa there, George! That’s a strong accusation to make. You can say someone has misinterpreted data, or that
their information is incomplete,**

No, I can say that plenty of so-called 'evidence' that the Dalbeattie webmaster has posted on that website has absolutely **no basis in fact.**

What you actually said was that Richard Edkins had made many deliberate misstatements of fact i.e. Lies. As I said, that’s a strong accusation to make. It involves accusing a man of deliberate falsehoods.

I can also say that knowledgeable people have *repeatedly* pointed this out to the webmaster but that he has (for *years*) found excuses not to correct his website's misinformation -- although he sometimes finds enough spare time to post *new* stuff that he feels bolsters his website's agenda.

The last addition to the site was on the 2nd February 1999. This was indeed added in haste, as Edkins was quite appalled by suggestions that had been raised in some sections of the Titanic community that Ernie Robinson, a quite remarkable researcher and individual, did not exist. I run a considerable risk here in that I do not speak for Mr Edkins, and might possibly be misrepresenting him, but my understanding is that he does not wish to do further work on the site until he can bring all sections into line and work on its navigability. He is fully cognizant now, for example, that reports of Moody being seen injured in the water are erroneous and has assured me that this will be amended.

(Interestingly, a member of this forum recently told the Dalbeattie webmaster that his website contains some historical errors about Molly Brown. The webmaster told this person that he felt she would 'be happier' if she stopped visiting his website and spent her time here on the ET website instead. Unbelievable!)

What’s ‘unbelievable’ is the spin you’ve put on this story ;-) I’ve heard from the same individual, and they mentioned that they had corresponded with Edkins regarding Molly Brown (I’ve had a quick glance at the site, and can’t even find the mention of her — perhaps you can do a cut and paste and place any references here for the convenience of anyone following this discussion?). The entire tenor of Edkin’s response as it was reported to me is quite different from how you have presented it here. Edkins is not — and has never claimed to be — an expert on all matters Titanic. When the individual involved sent him quite a few questions — not criticisms - (‘bombarded’ him was the phrased they used to me), he directed them to Phil’s site as this is without doubt the best site for general Titanic information on the net. It wasn’t a warning off at all — it was a recommendation to seek the data that the individual was after from the appropriate source. You probably are not aware of all the demands on his time, but there are a good many - it's one reason I don't bother to email him, as I know my chances of him finding time to reply are slim to nil. I even understand that he has to pass on a good deal of correspondence generated by the site on to other people.

It’s one of many sites I’ve provided feedback for, as I’ve received feedback for our site. It’s not my purpose or role to either defend or attack the Dalbeattie site. I’ve raised what issues I have with it with the Dalbeattie webmaster — both over the internet and in person. He has discussed them with me, and (as far as I know) has taken my suggestions on board.

Hmmmm…isn’t it strange that this entire discussion has — yet again — devolved to your antipathy for the Dalbeattie website? ;-) God, but I’d love to get the two of you in a pub together with a webmaster who could upload suggestions instantly and some of the researchers working in the field. Sedatives at hand to keep it all under control might work too…

In all this, however, I can’t help but feel a little bit sad at what has been lost. And what has been lost? In all the currents and cross winds and cross purposes and cross words…what is lost is William Murdoch.

Regards,

Inger
 

Mike Poirier

Member
Dec 31, 2004
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David:
You misunderstood my statement. I was not talking so much about ice on the deck. I said ice that came through the cabin portholes on the lower decks. I used McGough's testimony about it entering his cabin on E deck.
 
J

John G. Moran IV

Guest
Please provide the name of the book and the author's complete name with the surname, Brown.

Many thanks.

P>S> The iceberg was a moment in time. Poor Murdoch can't be faulted for the last moments of his life if they appeared irrational in behavior.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Hello John, Mr Brown was talking about his own book "The Last Log Of The Titanic." And what irrational behavior are you thinking about?

John, I thought you might like to know that I recently bought a copy of your book. I can't say as I'm impressed with the text in the flaps of the dustjacket that the publisher wrote up. It made the book look like it was going to be revisionist hype and does you a major disservice.(You might want to mention that to your publisher.) Your own text looks a helliva lot better though.

I'm sure I'll have points of agreement and disagreement (Who doesn't?), but dicussing these things is part of the fun.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Dear George and Inger,

I made a promise to Inger that I would not respond to stuff that I opposed and further promised that I would continue to post only in "friendsly circumstance" after the "Ice Princess" fiasco.

Inger, I apologize in advance for meddling here, but since both of you are aware who the Ms Brown/Richard advisor was and it was me, I wanted the rest of the membership to also have advantage of the whole truth here.

I was absolutely new to the whole research/titanic thing, but was very much interested in my knowledge of Murdoch as a human being. My first and only stop was to Richard's site. I read everything posted there.

I took notes. But when I had gone to Denver and read some things, there was a discrepancy regarding her. When I sent the infomration to Richard, he thanked me and said that he was aware that there was a lot that needed to be changed, but really did not have a lot of time. He felt that if I wanted to do a lot of research that I would enjoy the membership and activity of the ET Board and that he felt that I would fit in there.

I learned a lot from the Dalbeattie site and I learned about ET from Richard. I will always be grateful to him for this.

I believe that I am correct in saying that changes have been made to the site, as the area which incluced the dat about Molly is no longer there. But I tell you Inger it was there. I was not a professional researcher at the time and I truly have no bone to pick with Richard, Inger or George or Lowe or Murdoch or even Isamy or Capt Smith. I just want to be here and leanr from all of you.

But that is what I believe is importnat to George, as it is importnat to you and to others, is that if someone says something or posts it that it be reliable. For example, if I were doing research as a college student and I were to write up documentation and use that site as a ressource, would the information be reliable?

But that is not due in anyway to any thing less than an eager heart to build something that will be informative from Richard's perspective, but the fact remains that every person who pulls that site up reads those errors. How significant is that to life? I don;t know that my life will end because of it, but I spend about 2-4 hours a day on a message board with people who argue over lines of testimony to prove how many rockets were sent up and if they were white blue or magenta! (That's scarey in an of itself! he he)

I have a Computer Science degree from the University of Maryland. I have worked as an operating systems programmer, technical infomration re-engineeer and project manager, and I must say that the job of being a Webmaster absolutely scares the HxLL out of me. I have great respect for Phil and have no idea how he maintains us, much less the website. I stand in awe of him. It was his email to me of encouragement that helped me to get through the whole fiasco I eluded to before. And I respect him so much.

If you have a site and it is an educational site, then it is imperative that it be maintained properly. But there are properly 100 13-14 year olds with experience that could be asked to help out and some others who type to create the files.

The one thing that I have to say here is that the two of you are handling this thread, I believe, is a very professional way. No blood letting or anything like that and I am proud to say that I am part of this Board.

Inger, you say that "in all the currents and cross winds and cross purposes and cross words...what is lost is William Murdoch." While that may be true...it is also true that in sharing only bits and pieces of a man, one can only know bits and pieces and not the whole man to begin with. So, we have in fact only lost a half-man.

Ilya is related to this person and if he is only 10% like William, then it would great to know this man.

If you were to cross on the Titanic and you were to have died, would you want me to present only the "facts" that you were a gentle soul who was spiritual and driven and a great researcher. While all of that may be true and factual...it does not give anyone a true picture of the awesome woman who is really you. A woman who can drink Senan under the table...welll okay, so even I could do that...but you get my point hopefully. It is not that you are astinking drunk or anything bad like that,it is a harmless comradeship that you have with your friends that tells me something of you and I do not think badly of you nor would anyone else. your friends would know you that way.

But when people die, not only their life drains from them, but we as protectors of the holiness of their being must bleach out what must not be exposed in order to present only the very best. I say that not from a Murdoch perspective but as a person who has lost in my life time.

But how much is the public entitled to? I feel for people like say Barbra Streisand who value their privacy or even Jacqueline Kennedy..or even the very beautiful Lady Diana. They are truly in a fish bowl. The imporntat thing to understand is that celebrities sign up for this. But the families of Titanic survivors or even the very survivors themselves became celebrities without ever signing up on the dotted line for Hero Class 101 answering 5000 titanic questions for which many are not technical experts.

I have no idea who is right or wrong or even know if there is a right or wrong in this. All I know is that for me just to have spoken two words to Ilya here is a privilege and he is always sure to tell me the truth. I value that and I trust that. If I never ever spoke a word about William to him, he would be okay in my book.

My problem here is that I truly like George and feel that he is just trying to help out here. I do not think that George is upset with or down on Richard, I just think as a friend he is trying to help him to improve his site and to understand the importance of it.

If this alienates me from others, I am sorry and I do not wish to know all of the history that goes into all of this. Both of you alluded to a mentioning by me of my interaction with richard regarding the Dalbeattie site and I wished to set that straight.

I still visit Richard's site at times, but I research the information that I find there on my own to be sure of the facts. I apologize to Richard if at any time I misrepresented anything or said any thing that hurt him. I did advise him of the Molly Brown thing and it is my belief that he changed it. It was not done in a hostile way. But I did deluge him with questions and comments and he did get back to me that he felt that ET was better suited for me.And I have shared with him how happy that I am here on the ET board and that I wish him well.

I apologize in advance for any hurt feelings. While many of thge things that you have shared here are valid and worth looking into, bottomline the fact remains that if everyone would be honest and open about Richard Nixon as a man, or John F Kennedy, or _____fill in the blank.... we would know so much more about situations that happened in our history. But does the public have the right to the infomration? Who knows. All that I know is that if everyone would be honest/open about what they know about William Murdoch as a man we would know so much more about him as a person. That is just a fact. But as George said above, how can rumors be dispelled when all facets of the man are not available...but again I ask, what business is it for the public to know anything of this private person? Does the public have a right to know anything? I honestly do not know the answer to that one.

In my gut, I feel that a private life is a private life and their wishes should be respected. However, when anyone chooses to allow an opening into their life of only one facet, the other facets will come with it, it just won't be what we expect nor may it be truthful.

The only way that I know of to combat that is with the facts, otherwise the other stories will never end.

I have learned a very valuable lesson here. Things in writing can be misinterpreted or I may not write what it is that I am thinking at times. I have always maintained the policy of never forwarding emails to others. That is just me. When I had the difficulty earlier, I did not even forward any coorepsepndence to anyone, not even Phil and I will not do that.

But in the future, I will maintain my communcaitions between myself and the private parties that I am conversing with, as private and will never address, even in passing anything like this again. Because one never knows how their writings may be used and also the time frame and what is leanred over time makes the information relevant or irrelevant.

Richard shared with me in my last email correspondence with him after I asked for help with some data regarding the Oakland link that he had no knowledge of any San Francisco connection. And that he would like me to advise him as I discover anything. Yet, I was under the understanding that an entire summer of sharing had taken place where that information was shared. Even Ilya shared some of that. I learned from that one instance that any infomration that I gained and shared would be a oneway street or else the person who had shared with me of the summer issue was not totally honest with me.

This thread has turned into an issue of trust and responsibility. Unfortuantely I have trusted many people in my life that have let me down. I am a slow learner but I am getting there.

I do not know George, but I count him as one of my friends at this point. He has trusted me and has proven to be a man that I can count on. Even when I have had to share hard things, he has not treated me any different. I just ask that you take an unemotional view, as an independent study and see if you can see what it is that he is trying to say.

Again, I am sorry, but I had to make this clear, not for you, but for me.
Maureen. (I guess my raincheck on the UK Tour just got washed down the drain pipe eh?)
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
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Hi, Inger!

>What you actually said was that Richard Edkins had made many deliberate
>misstatements of fact i.e. Lies.

Then please allow me to clarify what I meant. Any webmaster who attempts to sway public opinion by (knowingly or unknowingly) posting inaccurate information on his website, who is then informed of his website's inaccuracies but who knowingly allows those inaccuracies to remain on the website for *years* -- with no end in sight -- has made a *conscious* and *deliberate* decision to do so.

>......my understanding is that he
>does not wish to do further work on the site until he can bring all
>sections into line and work on its navigability.

Come now, Inger -- what's stopping him from taking *five minutes* to delete the misinformation that has already been pointed out to him? Doesn't it bother him that his website has been misleading people for years?

>What’s ‘unbelievable’ is the spin you’ve put on this story ;-)....
>The entire tenor of Edkin’s response
>as it was reported to me is quite different from how you have presented
>it here.

I presented it here just as it was reported to me by my friend. It was probably a mistake for me to do so, though, since the webmaster's personal messages have nothing to do with his website's historical misrepresentations. I therefore apologize to the webmaster if what I was told about his rebuff of my friend was inaccurate.

>Edkins is not — and has never claimed to be — an expert on all
>matters Titanic.

We're not talking about "all matters Titanic," though -- we're talking about the specific subject matter that he has *chosen* to expound upon -- the death of William Murdoch. Since the webmaster is unfamiliar with the evidence pertaining to his chosen subject, perhaps he should consider writing about another subject entirely (i.e. one that he knows something about.) :)

>Hmmmm…isn’t it strange that this entire discussion has — yet again —
>devolved to your antipathy for the Dalbeattie website? ;-)

Not at all. If I were a Lincoln scholar I would have the same antipathy toward a website which claimed that John Wilkes Booth did not assassinate Abraham Lincoln and which misrepresented historical evidence in order to 'prove' it. I can't understand how any serious historian could feel differently.

All my best,

George
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
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Hi, Maureen!

Thanks very much for posting your message. I didn't mean to involve you by name in this discussion (and I apologize for publicly mentioning your message to me in such a way that you felt obligated to reveal your identity to everyone.) I hope you'll forgive me for opening my big mouth.

I'm proud to have you for a friend, Maureen, and I'l try not to disappoint you again.

Sincerely,

George
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
1,280
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Hi, Maureen!

Thanks very much for posting your message. I didn't mean to involve you by name in this discussion (and I apologize for publicly mentioning your message to me in such a way that you felt obligated to reveal your identity.) I hope you'll forgive me for opening my big mouth.

I'm proud to have you for a friend, Maureen, and I'll try not to disappoint you again.

Sincerely,

George
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Thanks for the apology George, but no offense was taken. You are not a disappointment to me and you are still my friend.
happy.gif

Maureen.
 
May 12, 2005
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All,

I have never seen the Dalbeattie site except on a list of links. But I have to agree with George that IF that site does contain gross errors which have been pointed out to its editor - especially if the editor has agreed that the material in question is indeed not factual - and these errors remain after a considerable time uncorrected, then it is certainly in order to conclude that that individual is purposefully and willfully perpetrating falsehood.

I have had a similar experience with the webmaster of a site concerning my subject that is so deplorably researched and unfairly biased that I refuse to give its name here. This person has never replied to my entreaties that he correct his errors of fact and try to balance his treatment. This site continues to this day.

If this person were to publish this thing in book or article form he or his publishers could and should be sued for such stupidity.

So I just want to weigh in here that a person disseminating information and wants to protect his viability as an historian MUST be careful that the information is based on sound research. Letting major misstatements of facts endure on a web-site or book or article, whatever, is irresponsible enough for an "ordinary mortal" but heinous for an historian or someone trying to be regarded as one.

Randy
 

Inger Sheil

Member
Dec 3, 2000
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G’day, George:

**Hmmmm…isn’t it strange that this entire discussion has — yet again — devolved to your antipathy for the Dalbeattie website? ;-)**

Not at all. If I were a Lincoln scholar I would have the same antipathy toward a website which claimed that John Wilkes Booth did not assassinate Abraham Lincoln and which misrepresented historical evidence in order to 'prove' it. I can't understand how any serious historian could feel differently.

I’m sorry, you’ve missed my point entirely :) What I expressed surprise at was the manner in which — yet again — a discussion about William Murdoch returns to the Dalbeattie Website…as if this were the sum total of information about Murdoch, or as if it somehow spoke for everyone who had reservations about the idea that he was a incompetent, manslaughtering fool! You’ve stated your position on the site at length, and I’ve outlined what I feel are the sites strengths and weaknesses (as I’ve also discussed your site). I’m curious as to why you chose the John Wilkes Booth analogy? In selecting one of the most reviled figures in American history, you have consciously or unconsciously linked William Murdoch with one of the most reviled figures in American history. There is an implication inherent in the comparison that both men are guilty of a dire crime, and that the evidence ‘convicting’ Murdoch is as complete as that which damned Booth. There are a good many sources available on Lincoln which I find problematical (I’ve always had rather a soft spot for the Sixteenth President — and my interpretation of him is closer to Vidal than Carnegie, if you want to talk flaws. He was the consummate politician, and my hat’s off to him).

I disagree with the content of quite a few sites, and perhaps one day I’ll appoint myself the guardian of the internet and cut a swathe through all of them :) Of course, the links page on our website (when the bloody thing is working — it seems to be down) has a link to both Edkins’ site and your site — even though I have problems with some of the content in both.

For myself, I’m heartily sick of the aggressive advocacy of positions on the suicide position (whoever your preferred candidate is — Wilde, Murdoch, Moody, or one of the wild cards). I recently read a book about the search for John Kipling, and it contained the following very interesting comment:

When an army officer is faced with a tactical situation in the face of the enemy that requires some action on his part he is trained to use a method of analysis which is known as ‘Appreciating the Situation’. By assessing in a logical manner all the factors relevant to the situation (such as the aim of any action, the strength of the enemy, the strength of friendly forces, the supplies available, the ground etc) and thence drawing conclusions, he is able to come up with a ‘Course of Action’ that should achieve the aim. However, in real life what often happens is that the officer is unable to face the tedium of the intellectual rigour needed to identify and to examine the factors affecting the possible courses of action, and he intuitively decides upon a course of action and then sets about finding factors and conclusions that confirm his choice. That process is known as ‘Situating the Appreciation’,

There is a place in historical studies for hypothesising, but there is also a good deal to much of ‘Situating the Appreciation’. I try to be conscious of it in my own work, as I started with a set of assumptions about the Titanic (largely derived from what I’d read in secondary sources), and — quite without conscious deliberation — seeking information to confirm these interpretations. In looking at Lowe I found enough to challenge the set Titanic canon, and it made me reappraise my approach. Now I prefer to let the material dictate to me rather than vice versa. You can peg me as a fence-sitter if you want, but having seen too many people go charging off with half-baked theories that suddenly become set in stone, and aggressively advocated, I’m going to stick to the idea that the only safe thing to say is that more research on the Titanic’s officers needs to be done.

I also find the deficient information on these men, and the incorrect information out there about their personal lives and character, utterly frustrating. But rather than just complain about it I’m attempting to redress the problem in whatever small way I can. I’m not happy with what’s there, as I feel it’s insufficient to present anything like a true historical portrait of these men.

Some of this is rather difficult to get across in the written word - and is certainly open to misinterpretation. That's why I'm so keen to meet you, and do genuinely hope to meet you in the UK soon :) Not to ambush you, but to introduce you to people like Dr Simon, who would soon set to rest any fears you have about researchers with an interest in Murdoch and his fellow officers being under some sort of hypnotic spell of seductive charm that outlasted the man by 88 years, which has some how disabled their critical faculties ;-). I could even pass on some of that material that is open to free and full distribution.

Hallo, Maureen —

No offense taken :) I just didn’t want George to think that Edkins was being hostile and ‘warning you off’. I’ve sent additional information and corrections to the site as well…Lowe’s affidavit retracting his description of ‘Italians’ attempting to jump into #14, material on the other officers etc. While he’s always acknowledged it, he hasn’t altered it yet (even the material that has no bearing on Murdoch). That’s about the extent of my involvement in the site.

Let me just restate this part:

Inger, you say that "in all the currents and cross winds and cross purposes and cross words...what is lost is William Murdoch." While that may be true...it is also true that in sharing only bits and pieces of a man, one can only know bits and pieces and not the whole man to begin with. So, we have in fact only lost a half-man.

I meant Murdoch in total, as the actual historical entity — as distinct from the Murdoch who exists in the consciousness of the Titanic community (and who is, indeed, a half-man). The sharing of bits and pieces of him is as true of the other officers (and probably other individuals as well, though I can’t speak with any knowledge about that). That’s the main reason why I have chosen this area of studies to concentrate upon. And, as outlined above in my posts, I too am disappointed that all data can’t be accessible to all people. I rather like the individuals as I’ve found them, and I certainly like them a good deal more than the facile interpretations that loom large in the Titanic canon. However, as I also outlined above, I do appreciate and respect the reasons that there are some people who hold information who are so heartily sick of the Titanic ‘circus’ that they opt not to share any information — positive, negative or neutral. And let me stress this point yet again in case anyone has ideas that there is a conspiracy afoot to consciously without only certain portions of information in order to present a whitewashed view of these men: the decision not to share information is in some cases a total, not a selective, embargo.

I also find the deficient information on these men, and the incorrect information out there about their personal lives and character, utterly frustrating. But rather than just complain about it I’m attempting to redress the problem in whatever small way I can. I’m not happy with what’s there, as I feel it’s insufficient to present anything like a true historical portrait of these men.

All the best,

Inger
 

Philip Hind

Editor
Staff member
Member
Sep 1, 1996
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Dear Chums,

Of course, we all go off on tangents from time to time. Some of us merely digress, others digress with emphasis or "quotes" or "both"!
happy.gif


But this debate does not have an awful lot to do with David's article and I think it belongs elsewhere.

Philip
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
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Hi, Inger!

>I’m sorry, you’ve missed my point entirely :) What I expressed surprise
>at was the manner in which — yet again — a discussion about William
>Murdoch returns to the Dalbeattie Website…

No reason to be surprised -- I asked you about the Dalbeattie website, you responded to my question and a new topic for discussion was born. Such things happen here all the time (and you'll note that this particular thread contains discussions on a number of different topics.)

The Dalbeattie website is one of the web's major informational resources about William Murdoch and, as you know, it has also been misleading innocent people for years regarding the evidence surrounding the man's death. The way I look at it, that's reason enough for me to alert people about its shortcomings if I wish to do so (which I do.) I receive two or three emails per month from people who thank me for opening their eyes about the Dalbeattie website's inaccuracies and for referring them to Bill Wormstedt's outstanding web page instead. That makes it all worthwhile (and historical accuracy is thereby served.)

> I’m curious as to why you chose the John
>Wilkes Booth analogy? In selecting one of the most reviled figures in
>American history, you have consciously or unconsciously linked William
>Murdoch with one of the most reviled figures in American history.

Although I suppose my analogy might be open to any number of interpretations, I assure you that my *intent* was to target so-called 'historians' who misrepresent historical evidence in order to sway public opinion (which is exactly what the Dalbeattie website has done.) If you really wish to delve into my subconscious mind, though, perhaps you can tell me what the following dream means: I'm walking through London's dark East End when Inger Shiel suddenly appears in the shadows near me; she shouts "Rest easy, Richard! I'll get him for you!" She then extends toward me what could be either a beer mug or a Webley revolver -- at which point I wake up in a cold sweat. This dream has been haunting me for years! What does it mean, Doctor? What does it mean?!! (signed: "Troubled in Mt. Clemens.") ;-)

Our discussion is (once again) becoming pretty repetitive, though, so I'm going to bail out again before everyone's boredom level causes Phil to throw both of us off the bulletin board. The board members are always welcome to drop by my website, though, in the (now unlikely) event that they wish to know more about the Dalbeattie website's mistakes. :)

All my best,

George
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
1,280
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David Brown wrote:

> Yes, there was ice scattered about the well >deck, that is an
>established fact.

Hi, David!

Just for the sake of completeness, Scarrot said that there were also ice fragments scattered around the first two starboard boats.

>About Murdoch's "Failings" -- ...... Murdoch >failed to slow down,
>failed to call extra lookouts, and failed to warn >Captain Smith of a
>"doubtful" situation. However, those "failures" >were in keeping with the
>way Captain Smith expected his ship to be >operated.

Well, I agree that Smith might *possibly* have not wanted the ship to slow down despite the ice danger, but extra lookouts would have had no adverse effect on Smith's expectations re: the timely arrival of his ship in New York. Also, Smith *specifically* told Murdoch to inform him if the situation became doubtful, so it would appear that Smith was a bit more cautious than you imply.

> Murdoch turned over a
>damaged ship to the captain, but one that was not >sinking (per Chief
>Engineer Bell).

David, could you tell us where and when Smith conferred with Bell during the pre-evacuation interval? Who witnessed the meeting?

>That's the "dark night"
>theory. Yet, the people who promote this idea >turn around and allow for
>Captain Rostran and the crew of Carpathia to pick >their way at high
>speed through the ice on the same so-called "dark >night."

Rostron confirmed that he was able to spot icebergs at a range of two miles that night. Even allowing for exaggeration, that's a long way.

Nice to see you posting here, David!

All my best,

George
 
J

John G. Moran IV

Guest
Michael Standart,

Chapter three of my book will have a Titanic Hollywood flair. In an effort to bring out the Titanic Report, I happened upon some Hollywood people in a non-fiction exercise of futility.
However, I have a publisher looking at this writing on monday. If he is unfavorable toward publication, I will release it over the Titanica site. It will prove to be spectacular including the actual phone numbers of the parties involved.
This will add to many a conversation on the web.

John IV
 

George Behe

Member
Dec 11, 1999
1,280
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Hi, Phil!

Sorry, but I was so busy composing my closing message to Inger that I didn't see your 'cease and desist' order re: Dalbeattie. :)

I take comfort, though, in knowing that you and I have similar ideas on when a subject has been beaten into the ground. :)

Take care, old chap.

All my best,

George
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Hello John IV,

Whatever you publish may be interesting, but I question whether or not Phil would go for publishing peoples phone numbers on a public website. You would be wise to ask him first.

In any event, as Phil correctly pointed out, this particular strand concerns David Brown's artical published in ET Research as well as (By virtual default)his book. May I suggest that you start a seperate thread titled Titanic Hollywood Flair?


George, I have David's book and I started going over it last night. The jury is out on some of the material that I've read so far, particularly his beleif that Ismay was acting virtually as a second captain. I'd be more comfortable if he named specific witnesses to that so I could check the testimony for myself. Perhaps that information comes later in the text. I'll let you know more as I go along.

Cordially
Michael H. Standart
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Dear David Brown,
Perhaps it is unfair to make statements here to you on a larger work when only a tasty morsel is here for our enjoyment.

Your work is fascinating in regards to your theories. Many of the facts you present were wonderful, some familar, some new, but some unbelieveable. But alll in all food for thought.

I would like to see more of a logical flow to things..perhaps it is just me, but even being a technical person, I felt that the "stop" described in your article was what my brain was going through as I went forward and back suddenly through much of your evidence. This made it extremely hard to follow unless fully equiped with a ship handlers glossary (which I have) and a Titanic blueprint (which in part I have). I think that I would receommend for a 2nd edition (if this is not in the book currently, as I have only had the privilege of reading this excerpt) that you include a snapshot of the blueprint of the area you are refering to and a diagram of what it is that you are describing.

Also, while I noticed a scattering of editorial issues throughout (which I attribute to just being a transcription problem), I did note a comment that you made that the Titanic was heading north more east (my paraphrase there, sorry) placing it on a heading towards Halifax. If you are a captain of a ship I apologize for this is advance, because I am no sailor by any means. But a north east direction from the accident would have taken the Titanic in slight angle directly opposite to Halifax and if I am not mistaken more towards Iceland (or the general direction of the Californian. Halifax being more north west. I state again, I am no seaman and I do not know alot, but I sold Real Estate for many years and getting lost was a real fine art and knowing form whence one came and where one was going was critical to getting un-lost.

Have you guess yet David that I am the serious one on this Board.
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Anyway, I write for a living and these are my silly comments for what they are worth.

As I said, many of your statement were wonderful, some new and some totally unbelieveable. But although I found it hard to track, it was full of very interesting commnetary.

And I want to thank both you and Phil for your immense patience while we managed to get ourselves back on course!
Maureen.
 
Dec 4, 2000
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Response to George Behe's Sunday Oct 29 posting --

The way officers choose to act (or react) in any situation reflects the expectations of the captain of the vessel. Posting extra lookouts would have upset Titanic's normal watch schedule, so was not something that would have been done without some unusual necessity. My point is that Murdoch did not take initiative on that particular night in the face of an overall threatening situation that he, Lightoller and Smith had all recognized. I've stood watch both as a deck officer and as the master, so I've seen this from both sides. In fact, I have found that my attitude as master was quickly reflected by the attitudes of the crew. The person in charge can never be a "friend" of those in the lower ranks for this reason. But, as far as Murdoch goes, he performed his duties to the expectation of Captain Smith that night. No matter who had the bridge, Edward J. Smith was in command. His attitude as reflected in his conversation with Lightoller (and probably with Murdoch inside the chart room at change of watch) was to "crack on." Which is what Murdoch was doing when the three bells tolled for Titanic.

Captain Smith's instruction to be called if anything became "doubtful" is captainspeak. I have said the same thing when leaving the wheelhouse for the necessary room. It indicates nothing beyond Captain Smith's recognition of his position as sole command. And, it did not go beyond the ship's standing orders. Smith's actions--or rather, inactions--that night tell the real story. He chose to accept the risks of the known ice rather than be a prudent mariner like Captain Stanley Lord.

Regarding ice on deck. I used the traditional journalistic standard of finding two or more independent sources for reports of anything that night. Using this standard, a great many probably true "facts" which have only one source were not included.

Reports of ice on the boat deck must be suspect for many reasons, but I'll list two. First, the shape of the iceberg as described by eyewitnesses was not a vertical wall, but more like a sailing ship, the sails of which are narrower as they go up. This shape is confirmed by two photos of the iceberg with a paint smear. While none of this is concrete proof of anything other than the existance of icebergs, it does suggest that Titanic's berg sloped inward, possibly to a point. It would be difficult for this shape to have scraped the boat deck.

Second, the ship's starboard side was lifted by the impact. Here, I must violate my journalistic standard by quoting only one witness, Lookout Lee. However, even a few degrees of lift magnified by 60-odd feet of height to the boat deck would have made impact that far off the water questionable if not impossible.

Ice on the boat deck need not have come from the iceberg. Venting steam would have quickly condensed in the cold night air. Some condensation would have collected on the vent pipes themselves where it would have become ice. Heat from continued venting would have prevented this accretion of ice from solid attachment, and a more than a few chunks must have been blown free by the steam itself. Most of this ice would have fallen roughly on the ship's centerline where it would have rested unnoticed. A few pieces, however, could have rolled down to the boat deck. If I saw ice on the deck after a close encounter with an iceberg, I would probably assocate the two...even if that's not what happened.

As to what Bell told Smith, we have no record. We do know there was direct telephone communication possible between the two men. And, we know that the WT doors aft of Boiler Room #5 were opened after the accident. Those doors were kept closed by an electric current controlled from the bridge (a safety feature to prevent unauthorized re-opening). Somebody spoke to the bridge to get the current shut off. Who? What did they say?

At one point, Smith chose to send a written message to Bell rather than use the telephone. This raises some interesting questions about the communications between the two men. Why would Smith use an old-fashioned, cumbersome personal note in an emergency? I did not dig too deeply here, but I believe this incident is a rather strong suggestion that the two men never really discussed the situation in any detail, and they probably never spoke at all.

Strictly speculation on my part, but it does appear that Smith and Bell were on two separate ships in terms of their actions. Bell did a wonderful job of organizing damage control and dewatering damaged areas. Smith, on the other hand, seemed not to recognize that his ship was in any way damaged even as late as midnight. Perhaps "E.J." was still on the bridge of Republic, Coptic, or Adriatic--all ships he had taken aground without serious damage.

Chief Engineer Bell's comment about the ship's pumps holding their own was not made to Smith, but to Bruce Ismay. This occurred more than ten minutes after the accident. It came a few moments following Captain Smith's orders to resume steaming.

Ismay's testimony about Bell's comments would be a one-source "fact," except that it fits all of the surrounding circumstances. Based on their actions, none of the other crew thought the ship was sinking at that hour, either. All of the work being done from roughly 11:45 pm to 12:40 am was either damage control (in the boiler rooms), or preparation for the worst (on deck). The deck officers from Captain Smith on down did nothing that would not have been done on a damaged, but not sinking ship, prior to 12:40 am. Forehandedness is the mark of a seaman. Preparing lifeboats would have been done even if the ship had experienced minor damage to only one compartment. Even the distress call at 12:15 am was proper for a wounded, but not sinking, ship. It was only after the bulkhead between Boiler Rooms #5 & #6 collapsed that the actions of the deck officers change to evacuating the ship.

NOTE: Parks Stephenson shared much of his insight on this bulkhead failure with me. He is investigating it and should have new information which may force me to change some of my ideas.


Responding to Michael H. Standart--

The owner is always a de facto co-captain when on board. ("Owner" meaning anyone representing the company.) Captains have an uneasy relationship with owners at best. I have witnessed an "owner" standing on a pier screaming at a captain who was a few minutes late because the fog was too thick to enter port even with radar. Don't look to the Titanic record for this. Talk to passenger vessel masters about their experiences with owners.


To Everyone --

The purpose of my book was to interpret the testimony and/or public record of Titanic through the experiences of a passenger ship operator (albiet a very tiny ship compared to Titanic). The result shatters a lot of traditional myths, but that was not the intent. I just wanted to set the record straight on a few things like the impossible left turn.

In writing the book I used the scientific method. I created hypotheses about what might have happened, then looked for evidence. Many of my most cherished ideas were shattered by the facts. Those ideas that matched the facts were included.

However, I do not have a crystal time ball. Being human, my book must be imperfect. And, that is a challenge to serious Titanic researchers. Take what I have written as a starting hypothesis and challenge it. You will do me great honor by correcting my work.

In the science of physics, Newton has been proven wrong, but that does not diminish his standing. Similarly, there are details in Walter Lord's "A Night To Remember" which are incorrect. But, that does not diminish his effort, either. After all, few (if any) of us would be on this Web page if it were not for Lord's work.

Knowledge of anything--Titanic included--is not an absolute. We can always learn more. Insofar as I stimulate the exploration of Titanic, my book is a success. It is not, and was never intended to be the final word.

-- David G. Brown
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Kudos, Mr Brown! I admire your statement here to us and thanks. (Shoulda known you were a Master!) And I certainly take it as food for thought, cause it does make one think.

Just a comment about the Ismay/Captain thing, I recall that someone mentioned that the first passenger cabins were not locked and it is attaributed to the time. I think that the Owner/Captain issue was as you indicated kinda of like an expected thing. It must have been truly hard to run a ship and watch over the behind the scenes stuff that Ismay was doing.

Just a thought though, I wonder if Captain Smith went to the Marconi Room to check out the received messages himself to see what was actually delivered to the bridge and what was not.

I tend to believe that the Marconi operators did not report critical ice warnings to the bridge and that that is what the Captain was checking out there. Just a thought, I have nothing to base my thought on though.

Thanks for your posting here.
Maureen.
 

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