Third Class Cabin Assignments


Aug 28, 2005
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I Finally figured out how they assigned passengers their cabins in Third Class. I came up with this pattern based on the percent of the passengers each section could hold. What they would do is stamp the section letter in groups of the percentage number that section could hold. Forward, they would place the first 8 in Section B, followed by 9 to Section C, then 11 to Section D, then 10 to Section E, followed by 4 to Section F, 16 to Section G, then repeat it all over again. In the stern, they'd start by sending 2 to section K, then 7 to Section M, 5 to Section O, 11 to Section Q, 11 to Section R, and 7 to Section S. I made up a ticket list of the Third Class passengers from the maiden voyage, took the known cabin numbers, and tried the pattern. It was about 85% accurate. They may do it the same way in Second Class as well, but I'm not sure. Remember, this is only a theory.
 
Dec 7, 2000
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Christian,

I don't know if it was quite so simple. Some of the sections were reserved only for men, others for women and others for families. I don't know how much flexibility your theory would allow.

I would have though that depending on the situation (single male/female or family) the passengers would have just been assigned whatever cabin randomly.

But it's a theory worth trying We should pool all our 3rd class known cabins (as not all are listed on ET) and try the theory again.

Lester, any comments?

Daniel.
 
Aug 28, 2005
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Oh, I forgot to mention something. I sorted the passengers in two groups. Men would go to the sections in the order of B, C, D, E, F, and G.
Women and Children would go to the aft sections by order of K, M, O, Q, R, and S. They were probably assigned cabins on the spot by a steward.
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Christian, the stewards on board had no role in cabin assignments. 3rd Class passengers would need to show their inspection cards, on which the section, cabin and berth number had been allocated before they boarded. This was done following the inspection procedure, and as far as possible the White Star officials placed the passengers according to their own preferences or otherwise in compatible groupings to keep extended families, neighbours and people from the same countries or ethnic regions together. They certainly didn't assign cabins solely according to time of arrival or position in the queue to board.
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Aug 28, 2005
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Bob, Thanks for pointing out the fact about the stewards. Another theory I had was that while I was reading Eaton and Haas' Titanic Triumph and Tragedy, I found out that when the Tickets are purchased, they are mailed from the ticketing office to the White Star main offices, where I am thinking they assigned the sections based on when the Tickets were purchased. I think this is highly likely, because what I did was I made up a list of the Third Class Passengers by the numerical order of their Ticket Number for the tickets of the passengers that boarded at Southampton, Cherbourg, and Queenstown. First, I added in the few known cabin numbers, then teated my hypothesis, and most of them fit like a glove. For example, I know that Olaus Abelseth and a few of his traveling companions had Cabin 63 in section G, where he landed himself on my list. Also, both Elna and Telma Strom and Agnes Sandstrom and her daughters were in Section S, also on my list. Although a few were off like Roger Tobin and Thomas Theobald were off, This pattern makes the most sense to me, In my opinion. I think with a few minor adjustments I could get it to fit perfectly.
 
Dec 6, 2000
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Christian,

The suggestion on this web-site is that Stroms and the Sandstroms were in room G-6, which was one of a block of cabins in Section "N" which could be either 2nd or 3rd Class. - It seems that Berk Pickard may have also had a room in this section. - How would that effect your system?

Please provide Daniel and myself with a copy of your Ticket List.
 
Dec 7, 2000
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While the the 3rd class passengers were issued with the green inspection cards in advance of the voyage, I think their cabins were assigned immediately prior to boarding right after the inspection. This may not have been done by the 3rd class stewards themselves, but could have been done by some chief steward or WSL official.

All the cabins on those green cards seem to be written in pencil rather than stamped or written in pen.

Whatever the concessions were in assigning cabins (in terms of nationalities, family or friend groupings) I don't know, but I doubt the 3rd class passengers had any choice about their cabin, at least not until after they've boarded. I guess as with all classes, if the 3rd class passenger had serious concerns or problems with their cabin they could always be moved (space permitting) but unlike 2nd and 1st class passengers, they had little choice where they were placed.

Daniel.
 

Andrew Maheux

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Dec 4, 2000
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This whole cabin assignment thing is interesting.....but Im confused...Why were the 3rd class cabins in letters and sections. What does each letter represent like is there dorms, single cabins or ones that could hold families. It must have been confusing for them as alot of them couldnt speak English

Andrew
 
Dec 7, 2000
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Andrew,

I'm sure that the passengers were assisted to their cabins by stewards who pointed them in the right direction and helped them find their cabin. None of the cabin numbers repeated but the section letters I guess were a quick reference for a certain 3rd class section.

When the passenger boarded a steward would look at their card to see which section & cabin they were assigned to. If it's say section Q, they would point them in a certain direction. There would have been various stewards at various locations guiding passengers.

At least that's what I think would have happened as I don't know how anyone would have expected passengers to find where to go on such a large ship, especially non-English speaking ones.

Daniel.
 

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