White Star Line Officer's Uniform Circa 1912


Shirley (300)

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Aug 11, 2010
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A relative was chief officer on the S S Afric in 1912 but I don't know where to find his name. Any suggestions?
 

John Roberts

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May 9, 2017
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Regarding the"Executive Curl" which seems to be a source of confusion among some, since it is known that the curl was only on the uniforms of "qualified deck officers". I have read a few sources which state that the Junior Officers (Pitman, Boxhall, Lowe and Moody) would therefore not have had the executive curl on their uniforms. In fact, every deck officer on Titanic had their Master's Certificate, likely gained by experience in other lines (Captain Smith qualified as Ordinary Master sailing cargo vessels for A. Gibson & Co.).That said, other officers wore the same uniform, for example, Chief Engineer J. Bell also had four stripes on his uniform coat, but since he was an Engineering Officer and not a Deck Officer, he didn't have the executive curl, just four straight stripes. Likewise Chief Purser H. McElroy also had stripes without the executive curl, being the Officer In Charge of Titanic's Victualing Department.In the case of the Pursers and Chief Stewards, there may have been a secondary color between the stripes, but I am not sure. Information on that would most likely be found in the British Royal Navy uniform regulations of the era. White Star Line seems to have, for the most part, taken those regulations on board, which only makes sense since many of their officers were Royal Navy Reserves as well. Thus far I have been unable to find a good source for Royal Navy Uniforms c. 1912, and if anyone could point out a place where I could find them, short of traveling to the UK and haunting libraries, that would be much appreciated.
 

John Roberts

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May 9, 2017
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In reference to my earlier comment, I have found some sources on Royal Navy Uniforms of the day, and assuming that White Star Line followed the conventions of the Royal Navy in this respect, the secondary color between Chief Purser McElroy's stripes on his uniform would have been white, as the RN Paymaster (Supply) Corps. Ship's Surgeon Dr. O'Loughlin would have had red between his stripes. I feel that this uniform convention explains some passenger accounts of things they say they saw Captain Smith doing. I expect that many passengers wouldn't know Captain Smith if they saw him, only the uniform, and may have mistaken Chief Purser McElroy, who frequently dined with First Class Passengers, or Dr. O'Loughlin, or even Chief Officer Wilde for the Captain. In particular, one Passenger (I can't remember which) claimed to have seen Captain Smith order crewmen out of a lifeboat at gunpoint. At least one more reliable account by a member of the crew attributes this action to Chief Purser McElroy.
 

John Lowe

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Mar 1, 2019
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My great great uncle was 5th officer on the Titanic Goerge Lowe,we have a dress sword in our prsession can any advise on a reliable source
of information to veryfi it's originality. Thanking you in anticipation
 

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