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Grim Relics

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Grim Relics

Post by Karen on Wed 25 Apr 2012 - 2:26

Boat in Mid-Ocean with Three Bodies on Board.

Man Chained by the Leg to a Thwart.

The reports brought by the White Star liner Oceanic, which arrived at New York on Thursday, concerning the discovery of one of the Titanic's collapsible boats containing the bodies of three men who had died of hunger and thirst have excited some uneasy feelings regarding the fate of some of those who perished.
When the collapsible was sighted, 260 miles south of where the Titanic sank, a boat was lowered, and in charge of the third officer was pulled to the derelict. After a while it came back. The passengers crowded round Mr. Withers as he stepped on board and hurled questions at him, but the third officer, his face hard and set, hurried to the bridge and had a conversation with the captain.
Then the ship's surgeon, Dr. French, was summoned, and took his seat in the boat, which was again rowed to the collapsible. Dr. French soon found that the bodies were not in a condition to be transferred. Sailors then sewed them in canvas weighted with lead, and Dr. French read a short service, at the end of which they were dropped into the sea and sank out of sight. The Oceanic stopped for fourteen minutes before proceeding on her voyage.
The three bodies found in the boat were those of men. One, a fireman, was chained by the leg to a thwart at one end of the boat. The two others were huddled together at the far end of the boat. In their mouths were small pieces of cork, which Dr. R.S. French believes they chewed in their delirium to ease the cravings of hunger and thirst. The starving men had torn away the canvas of the life preservers to get at the cork. Beside the bodies were found a fur coat, a man's hat, and two wedding rings welded together.
Dr. French said: "At the stern was the body of a sailor, and that of a cabin passenger, dressed for dinner, with an overcoat pulled over his evening clothes. The wedding ring we found was wrapped in paper, as though taken by the survivors for the purpose of identification. It was such a ring as a widow might cause to be made of her own and her husband's wedding ring. The two had been fused together. On the inside of one half of the ring was the inscription, "Edward to Gerda," and some figures, apparently a date, which we could not make out."
One of the three bodies was apparently that of Thomas Beattie and the others were a sailor and a fireman.
In the boat were also a coat with letters addressed to Richard N. Williams, and a cane marked Diana Williams.

Waifs from the Wreck.

One of the romances connected with the wreck of the Titanic came to a happy conclusion on Thursday, when Lolo and Momon, the two little boys who were saved, were restored to their mother, Mme. Navratol, of Nice.
On the night of the disaster the little ones were thrown stark naked into a boat, and were tenderly cared for by Miss Margaret Hays, daughter of an American millionaire, who expressed her intention of adopting them.
Then Mme. Navratol saw their photographs in the illustrated papers, recognised them as those of her boys, who had been abducted by their father (from whom she was separated), and communicated with the Children's Society of New York, in whose care the boys had been temporarily placed.
The White Star Line offered Mme. Navratol a free passage to and from America, and on Thursday the young mother (she is only twenty-one) arrived in New York on the Oceanic to claim her miraculously-saved babies. Accompanied by several friends she went to the office of the Children's Society.
Directly she entered the room where her boys were, Lolo, who is four, sprang into his mother's arms with a cry of joy. Momon is only two, and his memory of his mother was less vivid. But he, too, was soon nestling in his mother's embrace.
Mme. Navratol was alternately sobbing and laughing, exclaiming through her tears, "My Michel!" "My Edward!" "My Babies!"
Mme. Navratol said she was born at Buenos Ayres of Italian parents. Four years ago she married M. Navratol, a Hungarian, at Nice. For a time both were happy, but trouble came, and a suit for separation was pending when the Titanic went down. Her husband fled to Monte Carlo with the boys, bought tickets for America, and sailed under the name of Hoffman.
Mme. Navratol said she was distracted when she found the children had gone. She did not hear of them again until she recognised their pictures in the newspapers. Neither child suffered by exposure after the shipwreck, and today they seem to have completely forgotten the Titanic tragedy.

Widow Scatters Flowers Over Spot Where Titanic Sank.

During the last voyage of the Carmania to New York there was a simple, but pathetic, incident which affected everyone on board.
Among the passengers was a Mrs. J.L. Loring, whose husband was one of the victims of the Titanic disaster, and when informed that the Carmania had reached the neighbourhood of the wreck she scattered an armful of flowers into the sea in memory of her husband.
The five hundred cabin passengers on board stood on deck with heads bowed, the men being uncovered, and many of the women wept with emotion. Mrs. Loring, who is a daughter of Wieniawski, the famous violinist, made the trip especially to be able to pay this tribute to her late husband.


The Liverpool shipowners have agreed to grant an advance in wages of 10s. monthly to sailors and firemen signing on for ships from Liverpool. Other matters relating to the manning of lifeboats and inspection when the crew are signed on were referred to a joint committee to be formed later.

Source: Lloyd's Weekly News, May 19, 1912, Page 6

Karen Trenouth
Author of: "Epiphany of the Whitechapel Murders"
Author of: "Jack the Ripper: The Satanic Team"

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