Was any lifeboat lowered full


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Kyrila Scully

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Thank you, Tad...I should have specified that not all lifeboats left at less than full capacity. However, it IS possible to know who was a passenger in each lifeboat--there are no less than three books that have exhaustively cataloged the identities of the passengers, including those who were moved from one boat to another after the sinking in order to allow one boat to return for more survivors. Lester Mitchum has not to my knowledge written a book--though he should--he's practically made a life-long study of this very subject from original sources, I think. Perhaps he'll jump in on this subject and enlighten us further.
 

Tad G. Fitch

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Hi Kyrila, how have you been?

I agree, there has been some very good research on which survivors left in which lifeboats, and it is possible to know *some* of the occupants of certain boats, and in some cases, the majority of names of those in a particular boat. However, some of these studies have solid evidence on the placements of some survivors, but make educated guesses in the cases of other survivors where enough evidence does not exist, and often the reasons for these conclusions are not documented or footnoted, or the fact that it is an educated guess is not documented.

I have done a good deal of research on this on my own, as well as with other Titanic researchers. What is important to keep in mind is that no matter how high quality the research on this subject is, there is no way of knowing the exact number and the identity of every passenger that was in every lifeboat. Many survivors either left no substantial accounts of their experiences, aren't named by other survivors as having been in a particular lifeboat, or gave accounts too vague to peg a particular boat number for certain.

In many cases, researchers have to take educated guesses on who left in which boat, but there really is no authoritative list of which passenger was in each boat, because the evidence simply doesn't allow for firm conclusions regarding a large number of the survivors. This is particularly true in some of the aft boats, while it is easier to peg the identities of many of the survivors in the boats that left earlier.

That being said, it is a worthy project that many are still in engaged in, and a lot of the survivors can be placed in a particular boat based on the evidence fairly conclusively as a result. New evidence is sure to come to light, but this will be a process that never ends, and will never be completed since so much has been lost to time. We keep trying though!

As I said in my last post, the only lifeboat where we can say with certainty the exact number and the identities of everyone in the boat would be Lifeboat #1. A good deal of the survivors in some boats such as Collapsible B, Collapsible A, Lifeboat #6, etc. can be identified, but even in those cases we can't be sure of the exact number, and there are some people who claimed to have survived one way, but actually survived another, etc. There is no way to be certain in many cases unfortunately. I think that most researchers who have done work in this area would agree with me. I don't know whether Chris Dohany or Peter Klarstrom still post here, but without putting words in their mouths, I think as researchers of the lifeboat occupants, they would tend to agree. Inger Sheil might have some interesting thoughts on this as well, given her extensive research on Fifth Officer Lowe, and part of what goes along with that is trying to determine who all was in #14, who was pulled from the water, who was transferred to other boats by him, etc. It is hard to know with 100% certainty, even if a large number of the names can be determined.

I hope that you have a great weekend. It is only 3 degrees here today which is not going to make it fun going to the grocery store in a minute.

Kind regards,
Tad
 
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Trevor Rommelley

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I've been looking at the pictures of the lifeboats unloaded by the Carpathia in New York, particularly the daylight photo with 5 officers standing in and around them (Its the one with two officers standing in boat 13, second from the camera). From looking at their widths, I estimate that only 12 people could stand on the back shelf of the boat (furthest from the camera, bow to stern). How on earth could they hope to fit another 43 people in, particularly if they were sitting?
 
Jul 20, 2000
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Hello Kyrila,

>>he's practically made a life-long study of this very subject from original sources, I think.<<

Although lengthy, hardly life-long and by use of "original sources" you likely refer to my study of the Numbers on Board - Lost & Saved. Nothing whatsoever to do with who was in which lifeboat. - That was your field of study and what your book was all about.
 
Jul 20, 2000
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Hello Bill,

Hope you are keeping well.

>>I'm sure Lester's totals are far more accurate than these!<< I do not have any totals. I have never had access to sufficient information to be able to undertake such a study.

With all good wishes for 2009.
Regards,
Lester
 
Mar 18, 2000
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Sorry about that, Lester. I jumped to the erraneous conclusion that since you had done extensive research on the survivors, you knew who was in which lifeboat. My mistake.
 

Kyrila Scully

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Hi, Bill! Haven't crossed paths with you in awhile! Anyway, if anyone is interested you can find Lee Merideth's book TITANIC NAMES which will identify the boats. It's in nearly an identical format as my own, but he lists all the passengers and crew alphabetically while I only list those in the lifeboats in accordance to their launches. Unfortunately mine is no longer available at this time.
 
I'm more angry that the still of the wreck being raised in Raise the Titanic is labeled as the ship hitting the iceberg and beginning to sink. That ruins some credibility right there.

>> "The Americans at that time were not very
>> cultured, while the English were still gentlemen."

????????

Frey makes it sound like the Americans all wandered around talking like Slim Pickens and shooting up the Smoking Room with their winchesters.
 
Jun 10, 1999
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Mark B., YES you are correct...it was "Leo the Lip" Durocher which spoke that famous line. As a matter of fact, I collected Baseball memorabilia for 30 yrs., defacto my interest is resurging. Unfortunately the value of the Baseball *things* I had far outweigh my Ocean Liner memorabilia...oh well that is what a blonde hair, blue eye girl will do to a collection...;-) Then again Yogi Berra was heard to say..."It is'nt over until it's over".

Michael Cundiff
NV, USA
 
Jun 11, 2000
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I said it'd get some people going, and I was right.

Frankly, if the Americans got into the boats before the Brits, then I don't blame them particularly. But I think this research is weird. With such a relatively small amount of data then I don't think one can draw such conclusions. There's just too much confusion about classes and escape possibilities to be able to say who "leveraged" their opportunities (to use a modern term).
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>With such a relatively small amount of data then I don't think one can draw such conclusions.<<

Well, you could but that doesn't mean the conclusions are worth the paper at the bottom of the birdcage that they're printed on. Humans are pattern seeking animals and always have been. It's a mental survival tool that dates back to our biological ancestors who were swinging around in the trees. While it's been a valuable survival tool, it tends to get overused. That is to say, we look for patterns and meaning whether it really exists or not.

That said, the piece in The Daily Mail may not be entirely wrong, however, it may oversimplify a problem or issue by looking for that ONE Thing which explains Everything when in reality, there were a wide veriaty of random factors at work.
 
Jun 11, 2000
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Hi Charlie!

You don't 'stand corrected' at all. I just think there aren't enough people, or enough sea tragedies, to draw such a conclusion. I think Mike is probably right - it oversimplifies.

And - in the general scheme of things, I think nice buys probably do come last. I just wonder how many of these 1st class guys were 'nice'. I'm sure I would have come last being totally incapable of fighting my way into a lifeboat. Well, at my age now. If I were in my 20s I might have made a better go of it. And quite right too.
 

Jason D. Tiller

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I think nice buys probably do come last.

Huh?

wink.gif
 
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