The Rappahannock


Nov 14, 2005
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Actually, if the Captain is ill or is landed ashore or for any reason, cannot take command, the next in line is the Chief Officer or First Mate. The same thing happens down the ranks. In the Discharge Book at the end of the voyage, it is noted as "Acting".
Note that all the press illustrations appearing after the event show Titanic in a field of small ice with icebergs in attendance which was totally untrue.

If such a communication did occur on Saturday or Sunday, it would have happened half an hour into Murdoch's Watch and on Sunday night, the Lookouts Fleet or Lee would have remembered it. Fleet was asked if he had seen any lights before he left the crows nest and answered "no".
"17429. Did you see this light on the port bow before you left the crow’s -nest?
- No, "

If Titanic had been in communication with another vessel using her morse lights, it would have blinded the lookouts temporarily and it happening so soon before collision would have reminded Lee.

If this happened on Saturday, then as Sam pointed out, Titanic was way to the eastward of The Corner. Morse Light communication with an east-bound vessel was more than likely since the courses may have converged so far east - particularly if the vessel in question had a problem with her steering. However, if this did happen, the main concern of those on Titanic would have been the safety of the Rappahannock. Assured of that, they would assume as they did with other ice warnings, that any ice she had met with would be long gone by the time they reached the location.

I am inclined to go along with Julian's view that this is a sideline that ends in a cul de sac.
"I am inclined to go along with Julian's view that this is a sideline that ends in a cul de sac."
After reading thru the various threads and some other sites I agree. Like Dave Gittins came to the conclusion 20 years ago or so it was a yarn or by 1962 he was just remembering things wrong. Cheers.
 

Julian Atkins

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Hi Arun,

The Rappahannock and Titanic never came close enough for 'morsing' and the timings are wrong.

I would instead you try and unravel the Parisian message sent on by Titanic as a worthy subject of research.

Cheers,
Julian
 

Julian Atkins

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Hello Julian.

Which message are you referring to? I do not recall Titanic's Operators passing on any messages. Perhaps i misunderstand?

Hi Jim,

Of the Parisian's PV (in Hughes' "Titanic Calling")

"8.15pm [NYT] 4 TRs Titanic OK Nil - Asked MGY if he could take mge for MCE - OK will try if can hear you"

(This was a report to the Parisian's agents in the USA/Canada. I will attempt to add further details).
 

Julian Atkins

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There is a detailed discussion of the Parisian involving Jim and Paul Slish some years ago on here.

Paul had researched the newspaper reports of Captain Hains of the Parisian.

Being unable to provide the link to the thread via my iPhone this evening, I can perhaps summarise what Paul concluded that I regard as very significant...

Captain Hains said in effect they were going to concentrate on the Deutschland, a tanker, out of coal, so told his Marconi wireless operator Sutherland to turn in around 10.30pm on the 14th. As it happened, the Asian rescued the Deutschland. But before Sutherland turned in that night, he sent a message to Titanic for onward transmission to the Allan Line agents.

(No mention whatsoever of anything Cottam was staying up for from the Parisian to Carpathia).

Both Paul Slish and Sam Halpern work out the timing and distance the Parisian was ahead of The Californian, and it was within visible range - at least I conjecture by smoke for quite awhile before it got dark on the evening of the 14th.

The PV of the Parisian records it did not 'go back', and Paul Lee gets a bit confused over all this, presumably not having seen the PV. The Parisian continued on it's circuitous route around the ice field without apparently stopping for the night as did The Californian although Sutherland had been told by Captain Hains to turn in early despite the possibility of danger being encountered, and presumably knowing that The Californian was on their tail, so to speak. (If at some points The Californian was in visible range of the Parisian, then the reverse was also the case?). Evans on The Californian made a telling comment on this.

As a bit of an aside, I would suggest that the Parisian was on the Boston course in case it ran short of coal; it being, so far as we can gather, intended first to Halifax then on to Boston. This proved to be the case, and went to Halifax first, and then ended up in Boston where The Californian was also at the same time.

Of the message sent by Sutherland to Titanic for onward transmission to Cape Race to the Allan Line agents, I am quite sure I have seen it's content somewhere, and it included mention of ice encountered which escalated it to something of a higher status, and somewhere I have seen that this report was conveyed by Titanic.

That is all I can add this evening.
 
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Jim Currie

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There is a detailed discussion of the Parisian involving Jim and Paul Slish some years ago on here.

Paul had researched the newspaper reports of Captain Hains of the Parisian.

Being unable to provide the link to the thread via my iPhone this evening, I can perhaps summarise what Paul concluded that I regard as very significant...

Captain Hains said in effect they were going to concentrate on the Deutschland, a tanker, out of coal, so told his Marconi wireless operator Sutherland to turn in around 10.30pm on the 14th. As it happened, the Asian rescued the Deutschland. But before Sutherland turned in that night, he sent a message to Titanic for onward transmission to the Allan Line agents.

(No mention whatsoever of anything Cottam was staying up for from the Parisian to Carpathia).

Both Paul Slish and Sam Halpern work out the timing and distance the Parisian was ahead of The Californian, and it was within visible range - at least I conjecture by smoke for quite awhile before it got dark on the evening of the 14th.

The PV of the Parisian records it did not 'go back', and Paul Lee gets a bit confused over all this, presumably not having seen the PV. The Parisian continued on it's circuitous route around the ice field without apparently stopping for the night as did The Californian although Sutherland had been told by Captain Hains to turn in early despite the possibility of danger being encountered, and presumably knowing that The Californian was on their tail, so to speak. (If at some points The Californian was in visible range of the Parisian, then the reverse was also the case?). Evans on The Californian made a telling comment on this.

As a bit of an aside, I would suggest that the Parisian was on the Boston course in case it ran short of coal; it being, so far as we can gather, intended first to Halifax then on to Boston. This proved to be the case, and went to Halifax first, and then ended up in Boston where The Californian was also at the same time.

Of the message sent by Sutherland to Titanic for onward transmission to Cape Race to the Allan Line agents, I am quite sure I have seen it's content somewhere, and it included mention of ice encountered which escalated it to something of a higher status, and somewhere I have seen that this report was conveyed by Titanic.

That is all I can add this evening.
Hello Julian... Gotcha! Now I see. This was published on this site in 2009:
"PARISIAN'S WIRELESS EXPERT OFF DUTY WHEN TITANIC STRUCK BERG

I have just completed a calculation based on the ice warnings given by Parisian and Californian and the nearest approach was around 8 pm when the separation distance was just under 30 miles. At that distance, the smoke between the two would not be seen - even in broad daylight. Sorry about that.

Stay safe.
 
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Julian Atkins

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Hi Arun,

I could possibly resurrect the Parisian thread I referred to that involved Paul Slish etc. Sam's new book has a whole section on the Parisian, but I don't recall Sam relating the newspaper reports that Paul Slish found and quoted on that thread on here.

Hi Jim,

I think the consensus is that at one point in time the Parisian was 20 miles ahead (Paul Slish) and slightly less as per Sam from The Californian. This would have been the time of the iceberg Marconi message.

The Parisian was an old rebuilt tub, and was steaming along at 3 knots faster than The Californian, and I can only assume that at some point the Parisian overtook The Californian. Note Evans' comment on this.

Anyway, if I resurrect the thread I have mentioned then I will repeat all this plus more if anyone thinks this worthy of further discussion.

(I've always been interested in the Parisian! And isn't it interesting how it ended up in Boston with The Californian).

Cheers,
Julian
 

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