Mr Charles Decker

Comment and discuss

  1. Martha Iannone said:

    My great grandfather Charles Decker was on the Titanic from Belfast,where he lived, to Southampton, where he disembarked. What would be the reason why some of the crew left the Ship.

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    Michael H. Standart said:

    Sounds to me like this man was simply part of the delivery crew. These people made their living by ferrying ships from one point to wherever the owners wanted her, then they would leave and the permanent crew would come aboard and take over.

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    Dave Gittins said:

    Michael is correct. The nucleus of the victualling and deck crews joined at Belfast and stayed on for the New York voyage, but the firemen and trimmers were what were called 'runners', who went home after doing the delivery voyage. I believe they took a train to Liverpool and a ferry to Belfast. Sadly, this perfectly normal arrangement has been misrepresented by Robin Gardiner as part of his stupid conspiracy 'theory'.

  4. colin brawley said:

    Charles Decker was my great grandfather. He had planned leaving titanic in the usa.He was involved in a fight with another stoker and ended up with a black eye.So he left titanic at Southampton.His eldest son had already gone to america and when word reached there of the sinking he thought his father had drowned. Charles, his wife and ten of his children emigrated to the usa and he died there in january 1955 aged 94.

  5. Noel F. Jones said:

    "Michael is correct. The nucleus of the victualling and deck crews joined at Belfast and stayed on for the New York voyage, but the firemen and trimmers were what were called 'runners', who went home after doing the delivery voyage. I believe they took a train to Liverpool and a ferry to Belfast. Sadly, this perfectly normal arrangement has been misrepresented by Robin Gardiner as part of his stupid conspiracy 'theory'." In my experience the established practice was to open a 'run' Home Trade Agreement for the coastal passage. This would necessarily close at the destination port and... Read full post

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    Dave Gittins said:

    Part of the signing on list is reproduced on page 58 of Belfast's Own. It looks the same as the list used in Southampton. It's a rather weird document. Captain Haddock, then in charge, plus Haines, Wynn and other seamen, signed on 25 March 1912, at Southampton. At the bottom of the same page,. Lightoller, Murdoch and Blair sign on 2 April 1912 at Belfast. According to Stephen Cameron, quite a number of people who were obviously on board, notably galley staff, never signed on at all. It seems the whole affair was rather informal. The documents are held in the Public Records... Read full post

  7. Noel F. Jones said:

    In the absence of specific information to the contrary I distinctly get the impression that the crew lists available here are ‘office copies’ typed up after the event either in the shore office or on board while on passage Belfast-So’ton. Such lists are needed by the owner for inter alia the disposal of allotments and advances and as a basis for personnel records. Apropos ‘runners’, an Act of 1835 stipulated a differentiation between ‘home trade’ and ‘foreign going’ Agreements and furthermore required that a fair copy be rendered to the newly-created Registrar of Merchant... Read full post

  8. siobhan brennan deane said:

    The actual crew list for the Titanic's journey from Belfast to Southampton is held at the Public Record Office in Belfast, reference Trans/2A/45/381/c - I have looked at this original document several times and am in possession of photocopies of certain sections of it. The temporary crew were enlisted in Belfast in the normal way and I quote from the front sheet - 'the said crew shall be on board this steamer on Monday morning, 1st April 1912; firemen at four o'clock, and seamen at six o'clock, and from that time until she is safely moored in one of the Southampton Docks they shall... Read full post

  9. Lester Mitcham said:

    Hello Siobhan, Yes, Titanic's documents are at the National Archives at Kew. - If you have not already seen them typed copies are on this web-site under: People; Other Groups; Crew Signing-on Sheets.

  10. Noel F. Jones said:

    "...'the said crew shall be on board this steamer on Monday morning, 1st April 1912; firemen at four o'clock, and seamen at six o'clock, and from that time until she is safely moored in one of the Southampton Docks they shall perform all work required of them by the Officers in command without any further payment than is entered against their names. Firemen to clean down after arrival and as may be required. Food and bedding will be provided on the way round to Southampton, also tickets for the return journey to Belfast.'" So we may safely take it from these customised preambles... Read full post

  11. siobhan brennan deane said:

    Yes, this was a home trade run. The form itself is titled, 'Eng.6. For 80 Men. HALF-YEARLY AGREEMENT AND ACCOUNT OF VOYAGES AND CREW OF A SHIP ENGAGED IN THE HOME TRADE ONLY, and Official Log Book for a Vessel exclusively employed on the Coasts of the United Kingdom.' My Great grandfather, John Quinn, was a member of this temporary crew (a fireman) and the family story is that he tried to sign on for the journey to the USA but the crew for that trip had already been signed up in Southampton. He returned to Belfast.

  12. Noel F. Jones said:

    Eng.6? The 'half yearly' is in agreement therewith, so is the combined log book; but form Eng.6 was prescribed for home trade vessels of less than 200 gross tons(you'll understand that hereafter follows several exclamation marks). Furthermore, the regulations require the expired document to be rendered to the shipping office within 21 days of a half-year day, that is, June 30 or December 31, whichever is the more appropriate. In the case of Titanic this is a abject nonsense; runners want their money pronto. Form Eng.6 is a form of vessel-specific running agreement: could it be that... Read full post

  13. siobhan brennan deane said:

    Yes, this is definitely form Eng.6. - it is printed very clearly in the left hand corner.

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Link and cite this biography

(2020) Charles Decker Encyclopedia Titanica (ref: #2390, updated 18th February 2020 22:07:49 PM)
URL : https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/titanic-biography/charles-decker.html