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When Titanic Exhibition came to Buenos Aires -Argentina-, there was a big map showing the position of all the ships in the disaster's area.
There was one named Paris (¿or Parisian?) that, accoding to this map, could have been close enough Titanic, but besid this possible location of Parisian (or Paris) there was an interrogation mark. ¿Do anybody have more information about this ship?
 

Dave Gittins

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The ship was Parisian. She was ahead of Titanic and within 50 or 60 miles (I think). Her only radio operator went off duty before the collision and so the captain didn't know about it until the next day.

Even if Parisian had heard Titanic's call for help, she was too far away to assist in time.
 

Jim Currie

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I write this here because I can't find a better vehicle.

Frankly I've never heard such 'cod's wallop' as the statement made by Donkeyman Gill.
Having said that, 'there's no smoke without fire'.

Let's consider what Donkeyman Gill said concerning the ship that he saw at around 0002hrs on the morning of 15th. April. He saw the complete works : lights down to the waterline etc. 'Big German'(passenger liner?). passing.
Gill was standing on the starboard side of the maindeck - his height of eye could not have been much more than 15 feet. This means that if he saw a ship's side exhibiting all the signs of a passenger ship i.e. lines of lit portholes etc. then that particular ship could not have been more than 5 miles away.

At just over 13 miles, Titanic's sides would be invisible to him. So what did he see? Is this mystery ship 1 or 2?

Any takers?

Jim.
 
Mar 22, 2003
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I think Gill saw money. There are as many holes in his story as there are in a slice of Swiss cheese. We know from Evans that what took place during the middle watch was being talked about on the Californian the next day and while they were headed back to Boston.

Anyone else care to comment?
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>Anyone else care to comment?<<

Not much more to add to any of that is there? Gill was the witness even Leslie Reade didn't like, and there were few anti-Lord sources which he didn't like. About his only real value was that he could verify that something happened and that the crew knew about it.

Beyond that, I don't trust him any further then I could throw Mount Everest.
 

Jim Currie

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Hi Guys!

Agree fully with your 'take' on this weasel.
The disgraceful part is that learned men on both sides of the Atlantic listened to what he had to say and gave him a prominence in the affair that he did not warrant. They did not grill him as they did the others-why? That was one crafty sleaze-ball! After deserting even had the gaul to work his passage back home so he could make a few bucks more out of the UK press.
Unfortunately the summing-up in the final BOT report seems to have been influenced by what he reported regarding the proximity of his vessel.

As for the value of his evidence - a thing only has real value if it is scarce!

Cheers,

Jim.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>The disgraceful part is that learned men on both sides of the Atlantic listened to what he had to say and gave him a prominence in the affair that he did not warrant.<<

Well, he did give the powers-that-be somebody to blame whether that person deserved it or not.

That said, I'm not entirely convinced that even the Mersey Court had much love for this bloke. Especially when he said something along the lines of "I can't speak to that" on matters that he was clearly speaking to.
 
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I don't think Capt. Lord was the kind of fella who'd go to the bar with you and knock back a few beers. I bit reserved. Which might of had an effect on how he got on with his crew. But I get the impression from reading bits and pieces that he was a hard worker and very fair. A lot like Capt. Smith sans the charisma.

>>Anyone else care to comment?<<
Donkeyman Gill wanted the money for his (concocted) testimony. I really don't have much else to say about him.
 

Jim Currie

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I have been trying to cobble-up a picture of the positions of the players on that night.
The enclosed CAD drawing is the result. It's nearly to scale but more in proportion.
<table border=1>[tr][td]
attachment_icon.gif
Suggested locations of vessels with alternatives for 'Californian'.
Drawing1.dwg (32.3 k)[/td][/tr][/table]​
 

Martin Pirrie

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Files with the suffix .dwg are used by Autocad and Autodesk. You may be able to convert them to a .pdf file but I have found that some of the detail is lost in the process.
 

Erik Wood

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Just a quick comment about Captain Lord and his interaction with his crew. In that age (1912) and in this one, a captains place is not a bar drinking with the crew. Even when in port.

Officers yes, the rest of the crew...not so much.
 

Jim Currie

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Hello there!

Swimming in dangerous waters here!

I have made a few assumptions, used enquiry evidence and earlier suggestion and incorporated them into the following:

First, I assumed the masthead light of Titanic was seen by Californian at 2300 hrs at the extreme range of 22miles. I also assumed it was on a bearing of ESE (112.5T). This gave me a DR for Californian at 2300 Titanic time.
My next ingredient was a 0.7 knot current setting S 10 W. I used a speed of 22.3 knots for Titanic.

On a nautical chart, I plotted Titanic at 2300 with Californian bearing 292.5T (WNW) at 22 miles.
I then ran Titanic on a course of 266T for 40 minutes and plotted her DR at 2300. During this time, Californian would drift southward for the same time at 0.7knots. I plotted her new position at 2340.
The resulting situation at 2340 between the two vessels was: Californian bearing 323 T at 12 miles from Titanic - not 315 T (NW)as has been suggested. For Californian to bear NW from Titanic at 2340, she would have to have drifted 2.1 miles to the southward in 40 minutes - a current of 3 knots.
Both stopped vessels would continue to drift under the influence of the current. Titanic stopped drifting and sank at 0220- Californian continued drifting until 0600 hrs on the 15th. when she started south on her rescue attempt.

At that time, using Lord's DR at 0600, she would have 32 miles to steam to the survivor area.

Using the alternative position for 0600 she would have 23 miles to steam to the rescue area.
Additionally at that position, she would have been 6 miles from the CQD, 12 miles from the survivors, 8 miles from Moor's mystery ship and 10 miles from Mount temple. It seems unlikely she was there as all the participating vessels would have been in plain sight for some time before 0600.

I also plotted the suggested positions of not one but two mystery vessels. I used Lord's sighting about 12 miles to the eastward and Groves's 3.5 points abaft the starboard beam - bot observations when the ship'd head was NE T.
Groves said his vessel was heading at about 45 degrees to his ships head showing a red light - it was also getting closer. This suggests a ship on a northerly heading. On the other hand; Lord's sighting is indeed a mystery - particularly when applied to the plot. If he saw it 'just as he was going below' at around 2240 hrs and it was bearing 'easterly' and easterly is interpreted as about ESE and it was seen at the extreme range then we have a problem.
Plotting the interpretation of 'easterly' as ENE at around 2240 Titanic time and using extreme range of 22 miles places Californian about 11 miles x 010T from Titanic when she hit the berg.



I have made a drawing of the situation but don't seem to be able to up load it. First I was advised it had been uploaded OK then when I tried ti view it it said it was too big. Then I then went to the oversize facility and it gave me an upload facility I could not get to work...Help! (it is in jpg format)

Cheers,

Jim.

Cheers,

Jim.
 
Mar 22, 2003
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Jim, I'm too sure what you are doing, but any local current in the area is taken out of the equation since it would affect both ships the same way. So my suggestion is that you start with with several known items such as C was stopped, T's course and speed, the SSE compass bearing to T's rockets as stated independently by two officers, a total compass error of 22 degrees west (variation plus deviation) from Lord's testimony, 21-22 mile extreme range to see T's masthead light. The time interval between 1st sighting at extreme range and T stopping has to be taken as a parameter because nobody was looking at a clock. This will also given you a range of answers for the distance between the stopped ships as a function of that time interval. And that is about the best you can do with that set of information.

The key to understanding the location of Californian rests on two pieces of evidence. One, the location of the wreck site. Two, the true bearing from Californian to Titanic's rockets. The latter items says that Titanic was stopped bearing close to SE true from Californian. This means Californian was NW true of Titanic, which her on a line of bearing NW of the wreck site and the time Titanic sank. We also know the DR stopped position given by Lord. The next questions to be answered is where on that line of bearing was Californian and how did she wind up getting there?

In uploading an oversized image you should see a line that you need to copy and paste and put in your message at the point where want people to see the image. That is what I did so you can click on the following:
area_chart_0.gif
 

Jim Currie

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Sam,

As you will see, I have treated the current exactly as you suggested. However, you will also see that I have considered the current effect on both vessels between 2300 and 2340. They are, during that time treated as converging targets.

Jim.
 

Jim Currie

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Hi Sam!

I have re-worked my sketch incorporating the NW bearing and an initial sighting at 22 miles.
I have then drawn the appropriate bearing from the 2300 DR of Titanic. to the DR fix obtained.
After that, I plotted DRs for Titanic at 15 minute intervals back from 2300.(Lord claimed he saw his mystery ship earlier than 2300.)
From these DR's obtained, I inscribed circles at 22 mile radii for obvious reasons.
To complte the picture and since we have two positions; I inscribed a 22 mile visibility radius and a couple of 12 mile ones to represent the estimated sighting distances of both Lord and Groves's mystery ships from Californian at around 2300 hrs.

The NW bearing worries me! It would seem that to have seen Titanic's masthead light 22 miles away at 2300 and to have her bearing SE
40 minutes later - Californian would have to have been stopped no more than 9.5 miles NW of Titanic when she hit the berg. Reduced ranges would place Californian proportionately nearer to Titanic at 2340.
As you point out; this bearing and distance would not have changed much over the following hours until Titanic sank. Also, it would seem - although I'm not exactly sure of distance between the edge of the ice pack and Titanic's final stopping point - that Californian could not be any further away than 10 miles if on a bearing of NW from Titanic.
At say 14 miles on that bearing she might possibly have been on the other side of the pack ice!
Additionally: if Californian continued to drift at the same rate and direction until 0600 hrs, she would then have been about 5 miles ENE of Boxhall's CQD and 9.5 miles NW of the survivors. All the other vessels in the area would have been 10 or less miles away and very visible.
If I am correct then it was impossible for the lookouts and Murdoch not to have seen Californian about 4 points on the starboard bow just before striking the berg.

Obviously, Lord could not have seen Titanic at maximum range from his given DR at 2300 hrs.

From the alternative DR he could not have seen Titanic when 14 miles away at or before 2300 hrs. otherwise Titanic would have struck the berg 15 minutes earlier at around 2325 hrs.

As far as I can judge - there's too much here that does not fit. Perhaps I'm missing the obvious and will be pleased to be 'put right'.

I enclose the re-worked sketch. No doubt the scales will be distorted but I'm sure you'll see where I'm coming from.

Cheers,

Jim


img005.jpg
 
Mar 22, 2003
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>>If I am correct then it was impossible for the lookouts and Murdoch not to have seen Californian about 4 points on the starboard bow just before striking the berg. <<

Jim, we will never know what Murdoch saw before striking the berg. The lookouts were warned to keep a sharp eye for icebergs and growlers. Groves indicated that his ship's head was pointing NE magnetic about the time he spotted the light of a steamer coming up from abaft the beam. My guess is that Californian's masthead lights and side light were shut out to Titanic as Titanic was coming along. Only Californian's stern light would have been visible but probably went unnoticed since the ship was not moving. By 12:15, when Stone came up to relieve Groves the ship had swung to ENE magnetic and the mast lights and sidelight would have become visible. On Titanic that would have been about the time Boxhall came back onto the bridge to to look at a light that was reported ahead about 1/2 point on the port bow.

As far as Lord seeing a steamer come along before 2300, we discussed that on another thread. Evans gave NO supporting evidence at either inquiry to back up what Lord said to him about that ship coming along not being Titanic. I don't trust Lord's claim very much because of reasons already discussed. I think the time from sighting the approaching ship to noticing that it was stopped was about 1/2 hour. There is no way to pin things down better that that.

You asked about the lay of the ice field. According to Rostron, the eastern side went from NW to SE. According to Lord and Moore, the western side was going from NNW to SSE true.

The entire concept of a mystery ship coming between Titanic and California needs to be looked out from several points of view. That includes very the concept itself that a ship would come along and then stop for the night because of ice. That much is reasonable. But then you have to consider that this ship coincidentally happens to stop about the same time Titanic struck an iceberg and stopped. Then, after about an hour or more, for no good apparent reason, we have that same mystery ship moving again across 5 to 6 miles of pack ice toward the SW soon after Titanic's distress rockets start going up and still showing a red sidelight to Californian. Then the lights of this mystery ship don't quite look right shortly before her red sidelight disappears causing those looking at her to remark that something is not quite right. And then, coincidentally, this mystery steamer happens to disappear out of sight the same time Titanic's lights go out.

Now why should all that happen that way?
 
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