The Mount Temple


Jim Currie

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I'm not sure of the connection with Mount Temple Jake, but there never was not is there any 'special' steel for normal ships.
There is for ice Breakers and very harsh environment Drill Barges and Ships.

Although ship's are usually built fro a particular trade, it is in their ability to earn money on such trades that governs design. I.e. extra cabin space for Imigrants. Luxury recreation for rich passengers etc.
Quite often such ships come off the trade they were originally fitted out for and get a re-fit for another trade. Such re-fits do not include change-out of steel but might just include additional steel in certain areas.

Hello there young Martin!

Nice to see you back among the ranks of the slightly insane! Hope this finds you and yours well!

Jim
 

Jake Peterson

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Hi Jim;

Yeah, I realized no captain would want to purposely sink their ship, but considering the fact that the Carpathia dashed 58 miles to rescue the passengers, there is no excuse for the Mt. Temple (or the Californian, for that matter) just sitting there. What if the Carpathia's captain had decided not to make that mad dash? that would mean no ships would have reached the passengers until daylight, as I remember reading Carpathia having spotted both of the other ships (Californian and Mt. Temple) while picking up boats around 8 a.m.

It kind of reminds me of Walter Lord's conclusions about Stanely Lord's inaction that night; quoting from page 156 here:

"When he made his mind to stay put, he had no inkling that the world's most famous sea disaster was about to happen. He only knew that there was a lot of ice out there, and it was safer to stop for the night. This was the right thing to do, providing something didn't happen. But something did happen, and Capt. Lord's failure was his inability, or unwillingness to adjust to a new situation. True, he had his own ship and crew to think about, that that was no excuse for not doing nothing. He didn't even wake up his wireless operator, who slept a few feet away. What was good seamanship before the rockets became a woeful lack of enterprise afterward"

Now, to Capt. Moore's credit, he at least went ahead to the spot, but was stopped by an ice field. However, did he even try to navigate around the field to find an opening? I don't know, since I haven't read any Mt. Temple books about their side of the story. By the time he found an opening through the ice, was it too late, and he couldn't find the ship?

I'll definitely have to put Senan's book on my to-read list.
 

Martin Cooper

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Hi Jake, and thank you for the link, much obliged.

Hi Jim, and thanks for the 'young' bit, is that a reference to my new status as a 'junior member' ha ha. I wonder how someone who has been a member since 2007 and is also an O.A.P can be a 'Junior', and where have all our previous posts gone I wonder? Many members had loads of posts, you had lots of posts, and I had a lot more than 18, and of course Mike had many thousands, what has happened to them all? I am reminded of the old saying "if it ain't broke, don't try to fix it", ah well, I suppose it will all sort itself out eventually.

Regarding the Mt Temple. I have had my doubts about the position of this ship for many years, and Senan's book is a good read, I would recommend it to anyone wishing to find out more about this ship, it does make you wonder.

Regarding the Californian. Captain Lord went through the ice twice in getting to the position of the Titanic, he then went through it again to get back on his course. It is not all the plain simple way that Walter Lord puts it, there was a lot more to it than meets the eye, or should I say, meets the imagination. The Californian was 19-21 miles away from the Titanic, Walter Lord based his book on the theory that the Californian was just a few miles away, and a lot more information has become available since his book was published back in the 50's, especially since Dr Ballard found the resting place of Titanic. But the discussions will always go on about that particular ship and Captain Lord.

The Mt Temple is an enigma, and Senan's book at least tries to put both sides of the argument to the test. Senan has done a lot of research for the book, and it is a thought provoking read. If you are reading this Senan, well done mate.

Martin.
 

Jake Peterson

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Hi Martin;

Well, there are two schools of thought for the Californian; one being that the ship was 20 miles away, and the other being that she was only around 10 miles away. It's true that Capt Lord did navigate through the ice, but only at daybreak, when it was easier to see where the ice was. Walter Lord's second book only came out in 1986, so it's been out about 26 years as of 2012.

I tend to believe that she was only around 10 miles away, since the officers on her deck saw rockets. How far can rockets been seen? Could they be seen as far as 20 miles away?

I recall reading that Capt Rostron thought he saw a rocket around 3:00 (Lightollor was shooting flares off from his lifeboat), before finally arriving at 3:30. I can't remember though how fare Carpathia was at 3 a.m.
 

Martin Cooper

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Dec 13, 2007
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Hello Jake.

Yes, I know that there are two schools of thought regarding the Californian, and I know which side of the fence I stand on this.

To give you a good idea about socket signals (rockets), and how they might well have been observed that night, then you couldn't do much better than to go to the thread 'Rockets in the Night', and read the excellent post by Captain Jim on the 18th October 2010, it is a brilliant piece, and well worth the read, and it will explain a lot to you.

I think that you will find that it was Boxhall who was firing flares from his lifeboat.

Martin.
 

Jake Peterson

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Boxhall, that's right! I remember now! Thanks.

I see Jim was writing from the point of view of 2/O Stone. Having read Walter Lord's book, I don't remember Stone telling Capt Lord that they were shells.

Good post, though. Very observant. When reading it, I couldn't help but think "hmmm...the morse signals don't seem to make sense...I wonder if maybe the W/O should be awakened to see if there is a ship in distress. Better safe than sorry".

Having read Senan's post afterward, I see the testimony has Pittman saying that the steam whistles could be heard farther than the rockets.

I know whistles were shown as being blown off in the movie "A night to Remember". Does make you wonder how much more chaotic the decks were that night.

edit: by the way, should we move this conversation to a Californian thread? I don't want to get too far off topic here. :)
 

Martin Cooper

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Dec 13, 2007
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Hi Jake.

Yes, it can be confusing regarding the socket signals. Many folk refer to them as rockets (as that is how they appear to most people). But they were fired from a sort of socket that was set at an angle, the signal was like a shell that fitted into the socket, and was fired by a lanyard. The signal went up without leaving much (if any) of a trail, then burst at around 600-800 ft into stars, so at quite some distance they would probably just appear like a flash, and no noise.

Regarding waking up the W/O. Well, if he had been wakened he would have been told the (wrong) position, so that would have put the cat amongst the pigeons. If the Californian had gone to the given position, they would have had to go through the ice to get there, then on arrival would have found themselves in the wrong place, and would have to go through the ice again to get to the correct position (which is just what happened when the Californian recieved word of the distress), and I wonder if they would have found the Mt Temple nearby?

There would have been a big question of what to do for the best, the distress position given by Titanic is telling them that she is on the other side of the ice, yet the flashes in the sky are telling them another thing, what do they do?

I don't think Titanic sounded her whistles, I think it was steam venting that caused the din.

Try to get a copy of Senan's book (or indeed any of his books), they will make you wonder about what really went on that night, and what where the actual positions of these and other ships that where in the area, some thought provoking stuff.

Martin.
 

Paul Lee

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Aug 11, 2003
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I did a huge analysis of all the ships on the North Atlantic that night and didn't find much to commend the Mount Temple story. To make the story tenable, we need to have the ship heading north-east after reaching her "corner", rather than north-west to Canada. Then, upon reaching the ice field (which, we are told, mariners of her line were not allowed to go through) she stopped dead in the water, and slowly turned around for many hours, doing nothing. Call me cynical, but if I was a mariner on a ship I would be expected to know that my ship was not going in the right direction; and then, upon reaching an obstruction, find the bearings, wake the captain, do anything - but sit and wait for hours (and this is before the Titanic's rockets were going up!) ?! The ship was full of passengers who relied on a deadline. I'm sure I would be furious if I found out that the crew sat and drifted, having being misled by faulty navigation, rather than proceed upon her journey.

What I do find more likely is that the Mount Temple saw the green lights of lifeboat 2. I also strongly suspect that she saw the Carpathia's rockets.
Now, the green lights were admitted to in evidence, but not the rockets. I think this may have led to the stories of the Mount Temple ignoring
rockets. I think she did what she said she did; steamed for the ice field, but stopped, heeding the owner's warnings, and while there saw the
rockets from the Carpathia. Thinking they were from the Titanic, this may have led to indignation from the Mount Temple's passengers and crew.
I base the observation of the Carpathia's rockets on the inferred action of the black and white funnelled ship, which I have tentatively identified as the Lindenfels (see my link below).

As for what ships were in the area, take a look at my list. I managed to get it down from about 9000 to a more manageable number. It is research that I won't repeat in a hurry as it took well over a year to get all the ship's data together.
http://www.paullee.com/titanic/northatlanticships.html
 

Jim Currie

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Hello Paul!


I agree about Moore seeing Boxhall's green light. He could not have missed it! Unfortunately the 'fog horn' causes a problem.

I believe that Mount Temple may have been much closer to Titanic's CQD that Moore thought. in fact, no more than 37 miles away!

To explain, I'll refresh a few memories!

According to her captain, Mount Temple was originally heading for 'The Corner' at Latitude 42 North, Longitude, 47 West.
She was bound for St. John New Brunswick. His course from The Corner to Cape Sable should have been about 269T. Just 1 degree south of due west.
However, because of the pack ice warnings, her captain was ordered to alter course to the southward and skirt the last reported southern limits of the ice.
He said he aimed for a point at 41-15'North, 50-00'West then set course for Cape Sable from that point. His course from there should have been about 286True and he would have indeed beeen about 50 miles away from the CQD position after midnight that night
However, he also gave another latutude for his departure point ...41-20'North. If he had altered his course to 286 True at that position then he would have been no more than 30 miles to the SW of the CQD position at 00:30am that morning.

He told the US Inquiry:

"Mr. MOORE.
No; I was coming down to come to 41º 15', sir. Before that I was headed for 42º, 47º, sir. That was the position given to me by my company"

But he told the UK Inquiry:

9230. And in consequence of that information to what did you alter your course?
- Just a little to the southward of that, because I went straight down to 50° W.; instead of going down to 52° and 47° W., I went down to 50° W. and 41° 201 N.

I think Mount Temple did turn at 41-20'North. I also think that some of the time, she was influenced by the same current that set Carpathia to the north east.

If I am right, then it explains why Mount Temple had to stop at 0325am because of the pack ice. I think she ran past the CQD position and met the pack ice. I also think there is a very good chance that she was the yellow funneled ship seen to the south of Californian just after 4 pm. Because of the trend of the pack ice, that ship had to be on the south side of the ice.
At 3 am. Boxhall would be less that 20 miles away and bearing about East from MT.. 2 points on her starboard bow!


When I learn how to attach a sketch, I'll back this idea up.

Jim C.
 

Paul Lee

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I know you don't like the idea of a southerly current, but if the Mount Temple was heading more or less straight towards to Boxhall's flare, then she
must have been to the south and possibly to the east of her presumed location. If she was on course to the CQD location, and heading north-east then Boxhall would have been further to the east and to the south. I put this on a sketch on that website I referenced.

As for the yellow funnelled steamer; Captain Lord said in an interview in 1914 that the Californian passed the yellow funneled steamer as he headed south after clearing the ice, and the other ship was stopped on the other side (the east) of the icefield, a location the Mount Temple never reached. I have done a laborious search of all the ships in the north atlantic and the only ones with 1 yellow funnel/4 masts that could have been in the area was the Mount Temple, and the Montcalm and the Estonia. There are no other candidates. Neither of these two ships seem likely, as can be seen on the sketch on my webpage. A more likely explanation is that the ship the Californian crew saw after 4am was the Carpathia and they lied about the funnel colour because to admit that it had a Cunard colour scheme would have meant that the Californian was within spitting distance of the wreck...and of course, they couldn't admit to that.

Whatever way you look at it, the yellow funnel ship could only have been one of three, and the Mount Temple is not a contendor because of her location relative to the icefield, and the other two ships are very unlikely possibilities.
http://www.paullee.com/titanic/mount_temple_mapa.PNG
- the red line indicates the claimed route of the Mount Temple; and
http://www.paullee.com/titanic/mount_temple_map2.PNG
-Assuming that the Mount Temple, being the mystery ship was two points off the port bow of the Titanic, which was heading just slightly south of west as is often claimed (though the diagrams are meant to be illustrative only).
I have taken the layout of the icefield from the Birma's newspaper sketch map. They knew the peculiar shape of the southern edge of the icefield as they had to steam round it.
 
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Jim Currie

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Hello Paul!

I'm not quite sure I understand you or perhaps I was not clear with my last post.

I have never said Mount Temple was pointing at Boxhall's green flares. In fact, I understand that Moore saw the green light 2 points on his starboard bow.
No, MT was heading on a course of 065T toward the CQD position. I suggests she was much nearer to the CQD position be cause she crossed the 50th meridian 5 miles to the northward.
If she saw a green light 2 points on her starboard bow then that light was bearing 087T or almost due east of Mount Temple. This means that if Moore did see Boxhall's green flare he was due west of the wreck site at the time!

As for the current:

How was it that the current did not effect Titanic before she hit the iceberg? In fact, Boxhall implied she was being set to the northward. On making a course of 266T rather than of the desired 265T!
Additionally: how was it that Carpathia was not set to the south of her course for Titanic's CQD but well to the north east of it?

Not only that, but if there had been a south setting current; why was the pack ice more or less in the same place a week after the disaster?

As for the yellow funnel ship:

Californian was pointing to the WNW at 4am on the 15th and the ship with the yellow funnel was on her port beam therefore it was bearing south... not southeast.
If as you and Sam Halpern suggest, the ice was trending NW-SE at Californian's location then that yellow funnel ship just had to be on the west side of the pack ice, no matter what Captain Lord said in 1914. Furthermore, if it was stopped at the edge of the ice then it was about 6 -8 miles due south of Californian.
Have you considered that perhaps when Lord referred to 'the other side' of the ice. he meant the other ship's position relative to his own before he started off?
As a matter of fact, Mount Temple had a buff or 'yellow' funnel.

Jim C.
 
Mar 22, 2003
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Paul said: >>As for the yellow funnelled steamer; Captain Lord said in an interview in 1914 that the Californian passed the yellow funneled steamer as he headed south after clearing the ice, and the other ship was stopped on the other side (the east) of the icefield, a location the Mount Temple never reached. I have done a laborious search of all the ships in the north atlantic and the only ones with 1 yellow funnel/4 masts that could have been in the area was the Mount Temple, and the Montcalm and the Estonia. There are no other candidates. Neither of these two ships seem likely, as can be seen on the sketch on my webpage. A more likely explanation is that the ship the Californian crew saw after 4am was the Carpathia and they lied about the funnel colour because to admit that it had a Cunard colour scheme would have meant that the Californian was within spitting distance of the wreck...and of course, they couldn't admit to that.<<

You shouldn't assume the vessel sighted at 4am and the yellow-funneled steamer seen at about 5am were the same vessels. The 4-masted vessel with two masthead lights seen at 4am was described was having "a lot of lights amidships" by C/O Stewart in his signed deposition, indicative of a passenger steamer rather than a tramp vessel. This steamer was said to be heading much in the same direction as Californian was then according Stone, apparently presenting them with a broadside view. Californian was then heading westward, and only her stern light would have been presented to the steamer which was then abaft their port beam. When Carpathia picked up boat #2, she was pointing more or less westward, having backed to pick up the boat on her starboard side after porting aroung a low-lying iceberg that was ahead of them. At 4am, the MT was still steaming slowly eastward heading 065 T.

In 1912 at the American inquiry Captain Lord said that this yellow funneled steamer was to his SW about 8 miles. This was close to 5am, close to the start of civil twilight. He later was to change his story and say that this yellow funned steamer was to the east side of the pack ice and that they passed this ship as they headed down the western side of the pack. But we also have from Stone, who was woken up when all hands were called out at 6:40, that only 3 steamers were seen that morning which we can identify as Carpathia, Mount Temple and this small, 2-masted one-funneled vessel heading northward as they came up to the MT.

It seems that the only yellow-funneled steamer near the scene was the MT. And according to Rostron, he saw two steamers around 5am that morning about 7 to 8 miles away to the northward, one with 2 masts and 1 funnel, and the other with 4 masts and 1 funnel. The 4-masted vessel was apparently the MT which was then still stopped on the western side of the pack at that time, while the smaller vessel was somewhat southward of the MT then according Moore.

Assuming Rostron and Lord's distances to the MT about 5am were about right, then you have an approximte isosceles triangle formed by the three ships with two equal sides of about 8 miles. The distance between Californian and Carpathia can easily be derived based on the width of the pack ice which was estimated to be about 5 to 6 miles wide. This distance forms the hieght of the isosceles triangle. I'll leave that simple excercise to you guys. It's been documented in the Centennial book, and supports the estimated distance derived by other, independent means.

Jim said: >>How was it that the current did not effect Titanic before she hit the iceberg? In fact, Boxhall implied she was being set to the northward. On making a course of 266T rather than of the desired 265T! Additionally: how was it that Carpathia was not set to the south of her course for Titanic's CQD but well to the north east of it?<<

Who said Titanic was not affected by the current before striking the iceberg? The course 266 T was derived by Boxhall after he took stellar bearings from the standard compass platform to check compass error. We have that in the evidence. The course given to the helmsman was intended to make 265 T from the corner, but the ship was actually doing closer to 266 T. If you look at where Titanic should have been when reaching lon 49° 57'W on a course of 266 T from the corner, you will find that she should have been close to lat 41° 51'N. But she foundered at lat 41° 43.5'N, about 7.5 miles south. As pointed out in the book, Californian would have been affected twice as much by a south setting current than Titanic over the same westward travel distance because Callifornian was traveling at about half the speed of Titanic. Overall, Titanic would have been set about 5.5 miles south by the current by the time she foundered, and that is assuming she had gone 2-3 miles past the corner when her course was altered.

Carpathia was coming up from the southeast. She was set several miles eastward by the Gulf stream when down in lat 41° 10'N. That is why she stumbled upon boat #2 on her way to the wrong position. There was a convergence of two currents that need to be considered when look at how currents affect the paths of the ships in that region.
 

Paul Lee

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For clarity, I had condensed references to "yellow" and "buff." When I went through the ship's in Lloyd's, I gave the witnesses a bit of lee-way and considered both yellow and buff colours. When that is said and done, you only have three ships with 1 yellow/buff funnel and four masts. There
are no others. There weren't many ships with more than 2 masts on the North Atlantic that night.

Regarding the green light; Moore said in America that "She was a little off our bow, and I immediately starboarded the helm and got the two lights green to green, sir." It is difficult to know what "a little" means but I posit that the green light was almost directly ahead.
Here is a little sketch I drew
http://www.paullee.com/titanic/MTcoursesketch.jpg

From the 1914 Morning News:

While discussing this and the daylight becoming clearer, the chief officer was sweeping the southern horizon with his glasses, and finally reported he saw a four-mast steamer with a yellow funnel to the southward of us, and asked if we should try to get down to have a look at her. Being much surprised at his question, I asked, “What for?” The mate replied that she must be the steamer that had made signals in the second mate’s watch, might have lost her rudder, or something, and wanted assistance.
....
I immediately ordered on full steam, picked our way and pushed the Californian through the ice ahead to clear water beyond, then drove the ship under forced draft in a southerly direction down the water’s edge of the ice field some twenty miles. While proceeding in this direction we passed the four-mast steamer with yellow funnel across the ice field to the east of us, considerably nearer the Titanic’s position than we had been all night."

Lord himself made the connection between the Yellow funnel ship seen to the south and the one they passed to the east while they were heading south.
I know the old arguments about the yellow funnel ship being seen to the SW originally and then putting it to the south, but her Lord is saying that
after 6am it was to the east of the icefield. And if Lord couldn't remember two years later what side of the icefield the yellow funnel ship was on, then why should we trust his affidavit made in 1959?

What I am saying is that a game of pin-the-tail-on-the donkey was played with the Yellow funnel ship. If Lord was right about the ship being on the eastern side of the ice in his 1914 interview, then this discounts the Mount Temple. Had it not been for this, it may have been a potential candidate.

In my ships research article, I only found three ships that matched the yellow ship's configuration of one funnel and 4 masts, and none of them are credible predominantly because of Lord's comment that the ship was stopped to the East of the ice. The Mount Temple never got this far, and the other
two ships would have to pass through the ice, turn around, and dawdle in clear water rather than resume passage to the east. And they would have to sit there for upwards of two hours. With a schedule to keep, I doubt this.

If Lord saw the ship to the SW, and she had 1 yellow funnel and 4 masts, then she could indeed have been the Mount Temple; but this is disregarding his
later comment putting her to the east of the ice and neglects the heading of the Mount Temple; all I am discussing is the bearing.

However, if the ship was to the south, and on the same side of the icefield, then it is easy to postulate that the ship they were watching was
the Carpathia, and the officers on the Californian lied about the colour of the funnel. It is easy to see why: an admission of a one funnel,4 masted ship, with Cunard line colours stopping in the vicinity of the wrecksite would be a tacit admission that the Californian had been near the wrecksite all evening.

Incidentally, Stone makes no mention of the number of masts the "third ship" he saw on the morning of the 15th had. I presume Sam that you're taking this from Roston's statement? I also see you're sceptical about the Almerian too as you don't mention this as a candidate for a nearby ship; Lord's supporters say the Almerian, and the Mount Temple, were the Rostron ships seen after daybreak. It is a pity that Captain Moore and Groves did not say how many masts their "black and white funneled ship" had, but I think it can be reasonably deduced that she was the Lindenfels.

Rostron wrote in September 1912 to Lord, "I’m sorry I cannot give you any detailed description of the two steamers seen by me. All I know – one, a four- masted one funnel steamer dodging about, I suppose amongst the ice to the north; the other, two masts and one funnel coming from W to E straight on his course." On November 6th, Rostron again wrote, "Could you find out if he [the Mount Temple] was dodging about somewhere about 5.30 or 6am – I certainly saw 'the' steamer turning and dodging about that time, and if a 2 masted one funnel steamer passed them about 6 to
6.30a.m coming from the westward."

The 4 masted/1 funnel ship in the ice could be the Californian, as alledged by Reade et al. But the movement of the other ship, "heading W to E
on [the other ship's course]" is a puzzle. No-one on the Californian or the Mount Temple described any ship following such a route. Even Groves says that the black and white funnel ship was to the south of the Mount Temple when he came on the bridge c.6.50 and the b&w funnel ship obviously wasn't following the W-E route that Rostron said. Also, the Mount Temple was never in a position to be "dodging" in the ice, as Rostron put it - but the Californian was, and the time would be about right.

In short, I don't think its right to say that the 4 mast/1 funnel ship was the Mount Temple; and the movements of the 2 mast/1 funnel ship do not match the movements of any other vessel that we know of.

Regarding the current in the area; Jim, you seem to be under the impression that because the Carpathia was set to the east to enable her
to be on track to get to the Titanic's actual wrecksite and not the wrong SOS position (something I agree with), then this current extended
well north to the latitude of the wrecksite itself. The logic simply isn't there. Look at the sketch map of the Birma's icefield, which can be
found on this website. It may be crude, but I give it credence simply because the course plotted round the ice field was a sufficient
detour for the Birma's crew to obviously make a note of its peculiar layout, which shows a southerly perimeter running like a tail from south-west to north-east.
Then consider the Trautenfels data; early on the morning of the 14th, she traversed a similar south-west to north-east course along the edge
of an icefield; to the north of this, the water was full of ice.
She did not encounter the customary icefield that lay just ahead of the Titanic, running NW-SE and centred at approximately 50 W longitude.
Her report says that the ice ran from 42.01 N 50.06 W to 41.40 N 50.22 W and she further noted, "5.40am heavy field ice was encountered which extended for a distance of 30m and made it necessary for the steamer to run in a southwesterly direction for 25m to clear it; in the field ice, counted 30 bergs, some of which were large; off to the northward no clear water was seen, so that the captain estimated that the ice in that direction must have extended fully 30m. There were no openings in the field. During this time sighted about 30 large bergs."

If this 50 W icefield had been there, the Trautenfels would have had to steam right through it and yet her detailed ice report does not mention it.
I suspect that the edge of the SW-NE icefield that she skirted along was the same edge that the Birma passed around a day later, and many
miles to the south of where the Trautenfels encountered it. The only way this ice could have got from the Trautenfels to the Birma's location
was for a southerly current around 50 W.

I've sketched this out here:
http://www.paullee.com/titanic/birmaroute.jpg

The Green line indicates where the Trautenfels skirted the southern edge of the icefield. The red line indicates my inferred direction of drift. Although the map is crude, I get about 21 miles of latitude difference between the time the Trautenfels encountered the ice at 5.40am 14/4/12 and the location of the southern edge of the Birma's ice 24 hours or so later.
In about a day the ice would've drifted at a rough speed of 21/24 = 0.88 knots

I'm finished with this. Its 2.12am and it's time for bed.
 

Jim Currie

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Hello gentlemen!

Interesting!


At 4am, Californian was heading WNW by compass or about due west True.

Chief officer Stewart said he saw the other ship to the southward. 2nd Oficer Stone said it was a little or slightly abaft the port beam.
If Californian was heading due West at 4am that morning, then her port beam was pointing due south. It follows that the other ship was a little or slightly east of due south. Not South East as she would need to have been if the east side of the pack ice was, as you have suggested, trending Northwest-Southeast!

Surely, the ship seen by these two men must have been about 9 or 10 miles to the southward and on the western side of the pack ice?

Additionally: if that ship was 'a little' or 'slightly' abaft Californian's port beam then she would be seeing Californian's red side light. Not her white stern light! She would not have seen that until she was at least 2 points abaft Californian's port beam. Not 'a little' or 'slightly' abaft it.
For the other ship to have seen Californian's stern light only, and at the same time be bearing South east from Californian; the latter had to be heading at least had to be heading at least West-Southwest true and the other ship at least 2 points abaft her port beam. In no way could 2 points abaft the beam be considered as 'slightly' or 'a little' abaft the beam!
As a matter of fact: if a trained navigator referes to a relative bearing being 'slightly' or ' 'a little', he means a number of degrees less than a full point. Hence the term 'slightly on the bow' . Or 'a little' on the quarter. If you doubt this, ask an experianced deck officer.

As for the current question:


If you take the CQD position of Captain Smith, and run it back on reciprocal course of 266.3True you will find that it crosses the meridian of the wreck site 1.27 miles to the north of it. If you continue running back, you will find that the course arrives exactly at The Corner.

Compass deviation would not change from when the ship turned at The Corner. Magnetic variation was 25 degrees 33 minutes at that time and 25 degrees 08 minutes at the time of impact. If the set course was 266 true and no further adjustments were made then Titanic would be making 265.5 True at time of impact.
If the course had been set at 264.75 True from The Corner. she would have been making 264.25 True at time of impact
In fact, For Titanic to have arrived at a point 0.5 miles north of the wreck site, from The Corner, she would have made a course of 264.3 True.


You claim: "The course 266 T was derived by Boxhall after he took stellar bearings from the standard compass platform to check compass error."

Not according to Boxhall! Here is his explanation for the 266 True course.

"15667. And then your view is that the ship, when she turned on her new course at 5.50 had run beyond that corner?
- Yes.

15668. And, therefore, was to the south of it?
- Yes, to the south and to the westward of it.

15669. Then when she is put on her new course, her new course you tell me was S. 86 W.?
- S. 86. W.

15670. Though your impression is that as it is marked on the chart the course there marked is S. 86 W.?
- I think it is about S. 84 3/4 W. as a matter of fact.

15671. The effect would be she would have run a little bit further on the old course and then on the new course she is gradually making back to the line?
- That is my impression of the idea which Captain Smith had in altering that course and setting it to that time.

So in this version, Captain Smith caused the ship to be steered 266T from 5-50pm in an attempt to bring Titanic back onto her planned course.
How did he know Titanic was to the south of The Corner at 5-50pm? And if he knew she was going to over-shoot, why didn't he simply alter course earlier? Do you believe Boxhall's explanation?

Smith would only adjust his course when he knew where his ship was relative to the planned route. He did not find that out until after 10pm that night... after he had plotted the 7-30pm fix. This means that Titanic would only be on a adjusted course from 10 pm until impact!



The Labrador current follows the contours of the The Flemish Cap and the tail of The Grand Banks. As you know, it flows SW from The Flemish Cap and then westward, following the southern slope. Why would it come any further south?



I totally agree that Carpathia got an eastward push from the Gulf Stream and I do not think it's northern edge went much further north than 41-10 North. But Rostron was heading to the NW... across any south westerly setting current. Thus if there was such a south-setting current of say 1.5 knots, his ship would have been set southwestward and instead of making his course of N52W he would have made a course of near to N57W.
His DR for departure toward Titanic's CQD would be no more than 5 hours from his last fix so he would not be very far out from where Carpathia actually was at 12-30am that morning.

Moore of the Mount Temple planned to cross the 50th meridian at 41-20'N or 41-15'N, depending on which story you believe
She too would be effected by any south or southwesterly setting current and would have been well to the southward of where Moore thought she was when he heard Titanic's CQD. In fact, if there was a current, Mount Temple would have been effected by it for close-on to 12 hours before she heard that CQD. Furthermore, she might well have crossed the 50th meridian at close to 41-10 North!

However, there are as many holes in that man Moore's story as there are in a piece of Gruyere! Principal of which is the bit where he describes his movements between 3-25am and 4-30am. Have you ever wondered how it was that a ship with a maximum speed of 11 knots was able to stop, then move ahead slowly yet cover a distance of 14 miles in 1 hour 5 minutes?
There is no way this ship could have arrived near the CQD position at 4-30am then finally stopped about 15 minutes later when hard against the pack ice. She must have been much closer when she got the CQD message and arrived at or near the site much earlier than Moore said.


I began this post by pointing out that the ship to the southward of Californian just had to have been on the west side of the pack ice and about 9 or 10 miles away. I think that ship was in fact the Mount Temple!

Jim C.



JC
 

Senan Molony

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Hmmm. Well, one can see the reaction when I protest my book being described as “fiction” by someone who has a dog in this fight. Intemperate counter-reaction is not commented upon.

Fine. People take sides. But the book speaks for itself, and the materials uncovered within it (including the photographs) demonstrate its worth. Photos can’t be fiction, and faint-praising them alone speaks volume in the reverse.

The interesting thing here is that there is a wing of Titanica that has a preferred view and expressly does not want that challenged. Adherents actively do not want new research into the area of the mystery ship because it challenges their assumptions. Real research should actual threaten no-one with a genuine commitment to history, rather than those preferring to ‘maintain the status quo’ as they may see it.

The curious cannot close their eyes to the Mount Temple. It is not true to say that “green lights were admitted in evidence.” Not by anyone on the MT they were not. Moore made a curious reference to a green light, singular, on a schooner. A light that went out.

Why should we not test this schooner? Why should we not test why it is the Moore suggested to investigating members of the US Senate that a ship that was near him “when I turned around” could have been the Titanic’s Mystery Ship?

Fear not your precious Californian voodoo doll being taken away from you, and your pins too. Ask why Moore made that extraordinary claim? A Captain to Senators, on a hugely important matter, the ship seen from the Titanic when she was sinking...

Why did Moore’s crew speak to the newspapers, not only in St John but also in Halifax? Why did passengers go to the newspapers too? Why did officers on the return crossing tell William Baker, verifiably aboard the MT (but only if you research it) that they had seen the green light burnt in the lifeboats? That’s where it was said - and not in evidence.

Why, most importantly, did Moore repeatedly insist that neither he nor his officers saw rockets or pyrotechnic lights of any kind hat night?

If his evidence is true as to when and where he stopped (please read it) then it is inescapable that he must have seen Carpathia’s rockets *at the very least.* Yet, preposterously, he did not.

If the CPR vessel had indeed seen Carpathia rockets, fired long after the Titanic had sunk, what would be the point of denying them? The overall story could still be argued as valid — the Mount Temple had hastened to the spot, arriving at 4.30am, and was separated from what was the real scene by an ice barrier. Why the blanket blindness to such things?

But Captain Moore had denied seeing any pyrotechnics from the first, and any being seen by anyone of his ship, moreover, and his story did not change.
Titanic officer Boxhall had been burning green lights in his lifeboat, having ordered a box of them be put into it before lowering. ‘I had been showing green lights most of the time. I had been showing pyrotechnic lights ... the Carpathia was steaming toward our green lights.

‘He saw our green lights and steamed down for them.’ No-one on the Californian (apologies!) says they saw green pyrotechnics at any time.

But the green starboard running light on the schooner, which suddenly went out, is the only such light of any kind which Moore mentions seeing during the night.
There now follows what may be a truly shocking fact: it is that the British Titanic inquiry did not ask Captain Moore any question at all about whether rockets or signal lights had been sighted from his ship. Not one question, despite a welter of allegation - more than in the case of the Californian. Why not?

The replacement officer Wm Baker (homeward MT crossing only) said in a letter to Lord -

“They (MT officers) told me that they not only saw her deck lights but several green lights between them & what they thought was the Titanic.
....The doctor had made all preparations, & rooms were turned into hospitals, etc, & the crew were standing ready to help, on deck, watching her lights, & what they said were the green lights burnt in the boats. “

Officer Arthur Notley left the Mount Temple in Canada ship and was not present on the return trip.
He was the man Baker replaced.

Here is a statement of what Notley told Captain Stanley Lord at a subsequent meeting, the statement in a February 1961 recording of Captain Lord of the Californian.)

Q172. What did he (Notley) know?
Lord: ‘What did he know? Well he could see the ship there, and what the Mount Temple was doing.’

What ship, exactly, could the Mount Temple “see there”?

At Q259. Captain Lord spoke of green flares being seen by Notley.

‘He saw the green — they saw the green flares from their ship, he said.’

This is on audio recording. Yes, of course it’s Captain Lord, who always had a pronounced view, and it is made in the last year of his life.

But come on... Not going to look at Mount Temple. Off-limits? complete “fiction?”

Want actively to be as unseeing as Captain Moore?

Let’s be reasonable indeed.
 

Jim Currie

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Hello Senan!

As you can see, I too think the man was at least a waffler(is that how you spell it?)

However, I quote form your last post:

"“They (MT officers) told me that they not only saw her deck lights but several green lights between them & what they thought was the Titanic.
....The doctor had made all preparations, & rooms were turned into hospitals, etc, & the crew were standing ready to help, on deck, watching her lights, & what they said were the green lights burnt in the boats. “

If these guys saw deck lights then they were not from Titanic because Boxhall didn't set his green lights off until after she sank and in any case, if she had been still aflaot, he was on the far side of the ship from any vessel to the southwest of her.

Moore covered his green light story with sound... the sound of a foghorn! Now that's a strange one too.

Jim C.
 

Scott Mills

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I don't want to get into this debate at all, as a "newbie" and a mark amateur as far as knowing thee detail you guys don't. Plus, I know nothing about Mount Temple at all! So I won't.

You have convinced me to buy the book though. ;)

In any regard reading through this reminded me of something--and it's spooky when I think about my thread in the "in the freezing water" sub form (it was asking about the store clerk last reported paddling towards the ships lights on a large piece of debris).

In any regard a few weeks ago I encountered the text of an article in a Chichago (or maybe Boston) paper late April 1912.

If I recal the details correctly, it was someone wIth an Hungarian or Slavic last name that started with an H. In any regard, this man and his daughter made claims that they saw Titanic sink, and were close enough to hear the lifeboats being lowered and the screams of those in the water.

I just took this as someone trying to make money off the disaster by selling a story to reports.

The kicker, at the time, and the erie part when I think on Frank Preatince's claim his mate paddled off to never be seen again, was these Mount Temple passengers claimed that 3 of Mount Temple's boats were launched and a single surviving member of the crew was resued.

They then say the guy disappeared when he got onboard and was never seen, at least by the passengers, again.

There is in all probability nothing in this, but the thought of it did give me the chills reading through this thread.
 

Scott Mills

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I'm about 2/3rds of the way through the book in question, and I will only make one comment.

To call this book a "fictionalization" is a gross mischaracterization. The only thing even remotely fictionalizd is the voice of the narrator at certain moments in the book--in that it treats the evidence provided as part of a trial before history. It's innovative and pleasant from my perspective, as academic arguments I encounter on a daily basis always seem to be made as dryly and uninteresting as possible.

The evidence itself is well sourced and presented, as well as you will find in any academic work, and it's presentation is done without the "fictionalizd" narrative voice present.

Now having said all of this, I've got a question. Has the black funneled two mast steamer ever been identified? Clearly it was somewhere near the wreck site in the morning of the 15th as it is sighted by 3 ships.

I tend to agree that this steamer (based on Boxhall's testimony) cannot be the "mystery ship," but it's existence has piqued my curiosity.
 

Scott Mills

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Never mind. I answered my own question by reading a bit further.

It seems the likely candidate is the Almerian.

The thing that I find odd is the lack of family stories about any of these people's involvement in the Titanic episode. And I say this as the grandson of a US Navy engineer who spent over 35 years at sea (starting in 1928).

My grandfather endlessly told me stories all of my life and until his death in 2007.

Then again, my grandfather is my only reference to old sailors.
 

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