16mm home movie footage of tourists leaving the continent for America aboard the RMS Olympic, shots of tenders and on shipboard as passengers enjoy deck games...
This film beginning with views of the RMS Olympic at anchor at Cherbourg was shot in early 1928 but for the passengers on the Nomadic, waiting to board the Titanic at Cherbourg on 10 April 1912 this must have been an almost identical view.
The views come from a 16mm home movie that also takes in Switzerland, Turkey, Greece, Egypt, and Italy, also included are a few ocean liner and boat-related snippets from Alexandria and somewhere off the coast of Turkey or Greece. If you can identify any of the mystery ships let us know!
Towards the bow of the Olympic there is an open door, this may be the location of the door to the 3rd class open space.
The tender Traffic is first seen towards the stern of the Olympic, moving forward, there was an entrance for 2nd class passengers and their baggage on E-Deck around this spot.
The Traffic is further forward now and not quite up against the hull of the Olympic. The film is probably being shot from the Nomadic which pulls around the Olympic's stern. It is not perfectly clear but it appears that there is an entrance open on the Olympic's port side, so perhaps first-class passengers were embarked on that side, although as the starboard side would be the lee side the port entrance may only have been used in calm conditions.
Olympic at Sea
The railings have windbreaks attached to them. The camera pans across revealing a gangway along the length of the open third-class promenade connecting the poop deck to the bridge deck. An officer emerges from behind a ventilator and sits down with two colleagues outside the 2nd class entrance. On A deck passengers are playing shuffleboard and mini-golf near the main mast. A steward is seen walking around a little aimlessly!
Arrival in New York
8. The American flag flying from (presumably) the Olympics mast.
9.,10 The Statue of Liberty at a distance and quite overexposed!
12. Passing Battery Park. The Whitehall building visible. The camera pans back to the forecastle as the crew prepare for docking.
13. Tugs alongside the hull of the Olympic.
14. The camera pans across the harbour right to left.
An unidentified large two-funnel liner can be seen in the distance. A single-funnelled steamer comes into view and the camera pans across its entire length. This may be the Royal Mail Steam Packet Line SS Arcadian, ex-Asturias? In the distance, beyond her bow can be seen the Ras el Tin Palace.
15. Beginning with the Ras el Tin Palace we pan right from a slightly different location... perhaps aboard the vessel seen in the previous shot?
A white-hulled passenger/cargo vessel can be seen. A lovely sailing dinghy passes nearby. In the distance the same (probably) two-funnelled steamer.
16. A grey-hulled cargo vessel with a distinctive counter stern is seen.
Many smaller boats are seen as the camera pans, and then the three-funnel Belgenland comes into view.
17. More vessels are seen as the camera pans again.
Turkey or Greece
18. Shots of the coast, and a cargo ship is passed. Various other small boats.
19. The Laurentic II is seen.
Absolutely remarkable, especially the sense of speed from the stern as she races along. Thanks for this!
Incredible footage and what a treat for all us to see! Thanks for uploading it, Phil.
I am working on (or at least attempting to) identifying the vessels in question. But at this point, I can confirm that the ship seen at 3:50-4:00 is definitely the SS Arcadian, ex Asturias of the Royal Mail Steam Packet Company, not the Orient Line. The liner seen at 4:18 and 6:05 appears to be one and the same, but I'm not sure which ship it is yet.