The Other Side of the Night

Tracy Smith

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Apr 20, 2012
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Weighing in here two years late, as I happened to see a comment on Facebook today about Captain Lord being a "sociopath".

I've not been involved with Titanic research for some time, as other historical eras and events have taken up most of my recent reading of history.

And though I now have a better appreciation of the position of those who believe Captain Lord was guilty for his actions that night, to call him a "sociopath" is totally uncalled for and is firmly in the realm of ad hominem.

Still, I will try to find a copy to read out of all fairness, though I have absolutely no intention of spending my own money on it. Hopefully, my library will have a copy, which I'll look for on my next trip there.
 

Senan Molony

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Jan 30, 2004
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>>Again, the problem I have with the book is the numerous number of inaccurate statements and information it contains<<

This book is so full of false statements (not to mention thieved, totally unacknowledged and uncredited bad scans of other people's original images - including one in my own possession), and so completely ungrammatical, ill-spelt (seamen were apparently badly "payed") one-sided in its bibliography, profoundly ignorant and glaringly poor in its research - he didn't even visit Liverpool, home of the Lord papers in the Merseyside Maritime Museum, and leaving aside the psychobabble and towering vanity whereby he imagines himself as the successor to Walter Lord, that it merits only one description -

The Utter **** of the Night.

And no, Dan, I am not friending you on Facebook. Take a running jump.

Pellegrino, there is one more abyssal than thou...
 

Senan Molony

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Jan 30, 2004
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I've invented the theory that Daniel Butler is a sociopath.

After all, he consistently and deliberately spews dangerous toxic nonsense at an unsuspecting public... in repeated publications (my gorge rises when tempted to call them books).

Michael, pick a random paragraph or page from this outpouring of his and I'll deconstruct its garbage for you.

Any para... any page...
 

Adam Went

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Apr 28, 2003
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Don't know about Daniel Butler but what's wrong with Charles Pellegrino?! ;-)

Cheers,
Adam.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Michael, pick a random paragraph or page from this outpouring of his and I'll deconstruct its garbage for you.<<

No need. Whatever the merits or lack thereof of his book, he lost me when he tried to make Captain Lord out to be a sociopath.

Yeah, he made some mistakes and he was ill served by his watch officers, and yes, he was a rather reserved sort, but that doesn't make him a sociopath.
 

Tracy Smith

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Apr 20, 2012
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*I've invented the theory that Daniel Butler is a sociopath.*

After reading some of the bile I've seen him spew on other people's FB walls, I'm inclined to think you're on to something.

My library did not have a copy of his book. No big deal -- apparently my library has good taste and I'm not missing anything.
 

Mike Poirier

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Dec 31, 2004
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If that's true, then the BBC fact-checker will have a nervous breakdown. I think the Lancastria society put it best when they posted how he took the information on their website and posted it verbatim as his own.
 
Oct 10, 2010
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Is this the same fact-checker that worked on James Cameron's Titanic? When it comes to making money, I doubt if any TV or movie company "checks facts." Too much hassle, and why bother when the same myths are perpepuated (eg Bostwick Gates and so on)
 
May 3, 2002
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I have his Lusitania book and the Warrior Queens.
On page 90 he tells of the Queen Marys' near capsize in 1943. I would be interested in reading the source but there are no footnotes as he believes they are "a distraction and... the trappings of false academia".

In Lusitania he mentioned a service lift in Boiler Room #2 and sited it to Simpson, but could find no reference when I checked it out. The plans I have seen only show ladders.
huh.gif
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>I would be interested in reading the source but there are no footnotes as he believes they are "a distraction and... the trappings of false academia". <<

The catch is that footnotes give source materials which can be checked. Why Mr. Butler would have a problem with that is a bit puzzling since identifying sources which can be checked would work for him and enhance his credibility if they are in fact genuine.
 

Jake Peterson

Member
Mar 11, 2012
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Iowa, USA
Hi everyone; new here.

I’ve been browsing the forums for awhile, and decided to sign up and join the discussions. While the riddle of the Californian does fascinate me, the only materials I’ve read on the subject are Walter’s two most famous books, and this one. I’d love to learn a little more about this, from other book sources

I have read this book, The Other Side of the Night by Daniel Allen Butler. I thought it was a good read, but of course there are a few thoughts that came to my mind, most of which appear to be discussed here.

1. It appears to have a Walter Lord type feel to it, but as I read it, I felt like Mr. Butler was expanding on points Walter made, with new evidence. From what I’ve read on the forums here, Mr. Butler isn’t the best when it comes to citing sources.

Case in point, from page 96, taken from when C/O Stewart and Evans ran up the stairs to inform Captain Lord: “Thrusting the message at Lord, Stewart stood by, anticipating that Lord would order the ship to get underway immediately. Instead, Lord took one look at the message and shook his head in disbelief: “No, No, this can’t right, you must get me a better position than this, he said, handing the message back to Evans” There is no footnote for this, so I can’t tell which of the sources in the back he consulted to find this information. Same goes for the below paragraph.

2. On page 154, There is a paragraph that talks about the news conference Lord had, the one in which he states “If I go to Washington…”, he also apparently states, in the April 23, 1912 edition of the Boston Globe, rather an outburst: “It is all foolishness for anyone to say that I, at the point of a revolver, took any man into this room and made him swear to tell any kind of story. No member of the crew has ever been in this room, and none of them come near this place except to clean up”

Mr. Butler later uses these two above incidents to paint a picture of Lord’s sociopathary. At least Walter Lord never went so far to call him a sociopath, but rather just suggested that he should have woken up the wireless operator, to at least check things out. Butler, however, uses the point that he didn’t even wake up Evans as a key component to his sociopathary. To be fair, though, Walter Lord suggested in his book, The Night Lives on, that perhaps the crew were intimidated by Captain Lord, which might explain the amount of slackness aboard ship.

I wonder why Walter never found or talked about the alleged two above sayings? Each time I read the book, I'm wondering whether he actually said these or not.

I can neither agree nor disagree with Mr. Butler’s assertions. The rest of the book seems to be a rather convincing read. He paints Capt Lord as a decent person, who, in a moment of disaster showed his dark side.
 

Matthew Farr

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Apr 14, 2010
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Greetings Jake,

Some suggested reading for you:

A Titanic Myth by Lesle Harrison. This book is heavily biased in Captain Lord's favor.

The Ship That Stood Still by Leslie Reade. This book is heavily biased against Lord.

The indifferent Stranger by Dr. Paul Lee. My personal favorite on the subject.

Titanic and The Mystery Ship by Senan Molony.

Be forewarned, you are about to dive into one of the most contentious subjects associated with the Titanic sinking. Happy reading.
 

Jake Peterson

Member
Mar 11, 2012
329
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Iowa, USA
Thanks! I'll check those book out on amazon.com. Didn't find these two authors at my local library.

I wanted to get a discussion going about the book itself. I realize in every case there is a scapegoat, but I also have heard there were up to 36 ships in the general area, but there wasn't any condemnation on them. I have read some of the Mt. Temple threads. Sad to think that the captain of that ship didn't cross because he had orders not to cross under any circumstances, yet, from what I read, he was just on the other side of the icefield. Yet, he he was never castrated for not saving lives. In that respect I feel bad for Stanley Lord.
 

Matthew Farr

Member
Apr 14, 2010
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The Reade and Harrison books are out of print now so acquiring a copy at a decent price may be tricky. Paul Lee's book is available on amazon right now as is Molony's. Molony has another book out titled Titanic Scandal: The Trial of the Mt. Temple which you might find interesting. In it he contends that not only was Moore closer than he claimed but that he was the ship seen by passenger and crew from the sinking Titanic and that he deliberately steamed away from the sinking Titanic!
 
Aug 8, 2007
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Hi Jake, another book you might want to consider is Samuel Halpern's "The Loss of the SS Titanic: A Centennial Reappraisal", just released this year. It is a very comprehensive reanalysis of the entire Titanic story, and contains a chapter on the Californian which delves into what happened on her bridge that night, where she was relative to Titanic and what might have happened had action been taken when rockets were sighted by her crew. Another chapter deals with the Mount Temple and her actions. The entire book is a wealth of information and I am sure you would enjoy it for much more than its chapter regarding Californian. It is also available on Amazon.