Tag Archives: Mackay-Bennett

Titanic News: Greek Passengers on Titanic, What Happened to Titanic Bodies?

The Titanic: The Unforgotten Stories Of The Four Greek Passengers Who Perished In The Shipwreck
Greek City Times, 9 May 2022

What many do not know is that among the casualties, there were four Greek passengers, who left Europe, looking for a better life and new opportunities in America. Panagiotis Lymperopoulos, Vassilios Katavelos and brothers Apostolos Chronopoulos and Dimitrios Chronopoulos, came from the same village, Agios Sostis, in the region of Messinia in the Peloponnese. They were all under the age of 30 and once they heard the news about the Titanic and the cruise to the US, they travelled to Marseilles in France, to board the ship at the port of Cherbourg.

On This Day: The Lusitania Sunk Off The Coast Of Co Cork
Irish Central, 7 May 2022

The Lusitania’s crossing passed without event for the first few days, until it entered the war zone on May 6. As “History” recounts, the same German submarine that would deal with the vessel its fatal blow was already in the waters off the southern coast of Ireland and had sunk two ocean steamers and a schooner. “Thanks to these attacks, along with intercepted wireless messages, the British Admiralty knew of U-20’s general location (and of other U-boats operating nearby). Nonetheless, it never sent a promised military escort to Lusitania, nor did it offer anything but general warnings about active submarines in the area.”

What Happened To The Bodies From The Titanic?
Vintage News, 6 May 2022

On April 15, 1912, the RMS Titanic struck an iceberg in the Atlantic Ocean. With over 2200 passengers aboard the ship, there were only 706 recorded survivors following the ship’s foundering. The rest? Their bodies were either recovered from the water and transported to Halifax, buried at sea, or lost somewhere in the Atlantic. Here’s what happened to the bodies from the Titanic after so many unfortunate souls were lost to the preventable disaster.


Titanic Chronology: White Star Line Hires Ships To Retrieve Bodies (17 April 1912)

CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884)
Artist Unknown
Public Domain/Wikimedia Commons

As the world awaits news of who survived Titanic, the White Star Line decides to hire ships to go out and retrieve bodies. Reports of bodies floating in the Atlantic had been reported and White Star wanted to retrieve them as quickly as possible for a number of practical reasons. Ocean currents would eventually move them out of the area, so getting them retrieved as soon as possible would allow families to lay them to rest. Another reason for speed was that sea creatures and birds would start consuming the bodies making identification difficult as well. The cable ship Mackay Bennett was the first ship hired by White Star (others would be employed as well) to retrieve bodies. The ship emptied itself of its normal stores in Halifax, Nova Scotia and brought aboard supplies for its new mission:

  • Embalming supplies and coffins (100)
  • Chief embalmer of John Snow & Co., John R. Snow Jr.
  • 100 tons of ice to store the bodies
  • Canon Kenneth Hind of All Saints Cathedral, Halifax

Mackay Bennett left Halifax at 12:28 pm on 17 April 1912. Due to heavy fog and rough seas, it would take four days to reach where Titanic sank. They began recovery at 0600 on 20 April. Bodies were manually recovered by skiffs and brought back to the ship. They recovered 51 bodies but realized they did not have enough embalming supplies on hand. Since the laws at the time required bodies to be embalmed before unloading from ships docking in a Canadian port, they followed a general procedure:

  • First class passengers were embalmed and placed in coffins
  • Second and third class passengers along with crew were embalmed but wrapped in canvas
  • Bodies that were too decomposed or disfigured were buried at sea
  • Bodies that were brought back were either transported by relatives to their final resting place or interred in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Sources:

Books

Behe, George TITANIC: SAFETY, SPEED AND SACRIFICE, Transportation Trails, Polo, IL 1997

Eaton John P. & Haas Charles, TITANIC TRIUMPH AND TRAGEDY, SECOND EDITION, W.W. Norton & Company, New York, New York, 1995 First American Edition

Lord, Walter, A NIGHT TO REMEMBER, Holt Rinehart and Winston, New York, New York, 1955. Multiple revisions and reprints, notably Illustrated editions (1976,1977,1978 etc)

Lord, Walter, THE NIGHT LIVES ON, Willian Morrow and Company, New York, New York, 1986 (First Edition)

Lynch, Don & Marshall Ken, TITANIC AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY, Madison Press Books, Toronto, Ontario Canada, 1992

Internet

Britannica.com
Cobh Heritage Center
Encyclopedia Titanica
History.com

,,,

Titanic News for Thanksgiving Day

Press Release: Titanic Expedition Announced For Summer 2022; Oceangate Expeditions To Return To The Site 110 Years After The Ship’s Sinking (WFMZ, 23 Nov 2021)

OceanGate Expeditions announces its second annual expedition to the wreck of the Titanic, the 2022 Titanic Expedition. OceanGate Expeditions will charter the Cyclops-class carbon fiber and titanium submersible, Titan, to carry crewmembers to the historic maritime heritage site which sits at 3,800 meters on the floor of the North Atlantic Ocean. Citizen explorers, trained as Mission Specialists, will join a cadre of archaeologists, marine biologists, and Titanic experts on the second annual expedition to study and document the Titanic in more detail than ever before. The Titan submersible is outfitted with the latest camera technologies to capture ultra-high-resolution imagery that will help determine the wreck’s rate of decay and assess the marine life that dwell on the wreck.

==

 

Collapsible lifeboat D photographed by passenger on Carpathia on the morning of 15 April 1912.
Public Domain(Wikipedia)

Mortician Reveals What Actually Happened To Titanic’s Dead Passengers (Mirror, 22 Nov 2021)

Firstly, she looked at CS Mackay-Bennett, a recovery boat that ended up finding the majority of the victims of the tragedy. She continued: “The recovery boat didn’t leave Nova Scotia until three days after the wreckage and didn’t arrive at the site until a full week later. By this time, bodies had scattered and been exposed to the elements like sea life and birds, so the men didn’t find pristine preserved corpses floating on the surface.” According to Caitlin, many of the bodies did cluster together “like a flock of seagulls in their white life jackets”. The first day, they recovered 51 bodies, and in total, the Mackay-Bennett recovered 306 bodies. She continued: “Another boat recovered 17, another boat recovered three, yet another boat recovered three people in a lifeboat a month later over 200 miles away.” Because of this, it would be impossible to figure out how many people sank to the bottom of the ocean or floated away.

==

Relative Of Titanic Boss Who Supposedly Abandoned Women And Children To Drown Insists He Was ‘No Coward’ (My London, 21 Nov 2021)

They belong to Bruce’s grandson whom Clifford visited and spoke to at his home in Scotland – and, he says, they tell a very different story about this so-called cowardly man. One thing they redress is the criticism Bruce received for resigning from the White Star Line after the disaster “Documents show Bruce had actually planned to retire before Titanic sailed and had found a successor in Harold Sanderson,” says Clifford. “Also he wanted to give up the presidency of International Mercantile Marine Company – the White Star’s American parent company – but actually continue as chairman of the White Star Line, but the remaining directors didn’t want him to remain as chair in the end.” Clifford explains he hadn’t really wanted to be president of IMM in the first place and only accepted the post reluctantly after his colleagues persuaded him. So it wasn’t as if he had jumped ship after the disaster like a coward.

==

Titanic Pump-House To Become Whiskey Distillery And Tourist Attraction (Belfast Live, 17 Nov 21)

The historic Titanic pump-house is set to become a whiskey distillery and new tourist attraction. Titanic Distillers have been given the green light for the redevelopment of the listed building by Belfast City Council planning committee. Based in the heart of the Titanic Quarter, it first opened in 1911 alongside its neighbouring dock and the distillery will also feature a visitors attraction so that people will be able to see the authentic Titanic landmark. Titanic Distillers Director Richard Irwin, said the company was excited that the application had been approved.

==

Why The Shipyards That Built The Titanic Still Influence Belfast (National Geographic, 16 Nov 2021)

Now, a hundred years since Northern Ireland was born, this industrial site has been transformed into one of the country’s main tourism draws, home to the Titanic Belfast attraction and several historic maritime sites. The slipways where the Titanic was built are now a top outdoor performance venue in Belfast, which has just been awarded UNESCO City of Music status in recognition of its dynamic live music scene. The yards also grace the big screen in Kenneth Branagh’s new movie, Belfast, inspired by his childhood here during the turbulent 1960s.

And for your Thanksgiving Day. Here is an excerpt from the now infamous Turkey Drop episode of WKRP.


Titanic Chronology: White Star Line Hires Ships To Retrieve Bodies (17 April 1912)

CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884)
Artist Unknown
Public Domain/Wikimedia Commons

As the world awaits news of who survived Titanic, the White Star Line decides to hire ships to go out and retrieve bodies. Reports of bodies floating in the Atlantic had been reported and White Star wanted to retrieve them as quickly as possible for a number of practical reasons. Ocean currents would eventually move them out of the area, so getting them retrieved as soon as possible would allow families to lay them to rest. Another reason for speed was that sea creatures and birds would start consuming the bodies making identification difficult as well. The cable ship Mackay Bennett was the first ship hired by White Star (others would be employed as well) to retrieve bodies. The ship emptied itself of its normal stores in Halifax, Nova Scotia and brought aboard supplies for its new mission:

  • Embalming supplies and coffins (100)
  • Chief embalmer of John Snow & Co., John R. Snow Jr.
  • 100 tons of ice to store the bodies
  • Canon Kenneth Hind of All Saints Cathedral, Halifax

Mackay Bennett left Halifax at 12:28 pm on 17 April 1912. Due to heavy fog and rough seas, it would take four days to reach where Titanic sank. They began recovery at 0600 on 20 April. Bodies were manually recovered by skiffs and brought back to the ship. They recovered 51 bodies but realized they did not have enough embalming supplies on hand. Since the laws at the time required bodies to be embalmed before unloading from ships docking in a Canadian port, they followed a general procedure:

  • First class passengers were embalmed and placed in coffins
  • Second and third class passengers along with crew were embalmed but wrapped in canvas
  • Bodies that were too decomposed or disfigured were buried at sea
  • Bodies that were brought back were either transported by relatives to their final resting place or interred in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Sources:

Books

Behe, George TITANIC: SAFETY, SPEED AND SACRIFICE, Transportation Trails, Polo, IL 1997

Eaton John P. & Haas Charles, TITANIC TRIUMPH AND TRAGEDY, SECOND EDITION, W.W. Norton & Company, New York, New York, 1995 First American Edition

Lord, Walter, A NIGHT TO REMEMBER, Holt Rinehart and Winston, New York, New York, 1955. Multiple revisions and reprints, notably Illustrated editions (1976,1977,1978 etc)

Lord, Walter, THE NIGHT LIVES ON, Willian Morrow and Company, New York, New York, 1986 (First Edition)

Lynch, Don & Marshall Ken, TITANIC AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY, Madison Press Books, Toronto, Ontario Canada, 1992

Internet

Britannica.com
Cobh Heritage Center
Encyclopedia Titanica
History.com

,,,

Titanic Chronology-April 30,1912:mackay-bennett arrives halifax, nova scotia

CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884)
Artist Unknown
Public Domain

On April 30. 1912 the cable ship Mackay-Bennett along with RMS Olympic arrived at Halifax, Nova Scotia. 200 bodies of people who had died after Titanic sank. Mackay-Bennett recovered 306 bodies but 116 had to be buried at sea due to insufficient embalming fluid. Of those identified included John Astor and Isidor Straus.  Minia, another cable ship, took over the duties of Mackay-Bennett

Most of the bodies were unloaded at the Coal or Flagship Wharf on the waterfront. Horse-drawn carriages brought the victims to the temporary morgue in the Mayflower Curling Rink. 59 bodies were shipped out by train to their families. The remaining bodies were interred in three Halifax cemeteries three Halifax cemeteries between May 3 and June 12. Burial services were conducted at various churches in Nova Scotia. Flowers and wreaths for victims were provided by local people and businesses. Coffins of the unidentified had lilies on them.

White Star Line paid for many of the tombstones in the cemeteries. Many of the plain block granite ones were replaced by family members and friends with more ornate tombstones.

Titanic Grave markers at Fairview Cemetery Halifax N.S
William B. Grice (Wikimedia)

Sources:

Titanic Chronology: 17 April 1912:The Grim Task of Collecting Bodies

CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884) Artist Unknown Public Domain
CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884)
Artist Unknown
Public Domain

With confirmation that Titanic sank with great loss of life, the next task was to collect bodies floating in the Atlantic. The cable ship Mackay Bennett was the first ship hired by White Star (others would be employed as well)to retrieve bodies. The ship emptied itself of its normal stores in Halifax, Nova Scotia and brought aboard supplies for its new mission:

  • Embalming supplies and coffins (100)
  • Chief embalmer of John Snow & Co.,John R. Snow Jr.
  • 100 tons of ice to store the bodies
  • Canon Kenneth Hind of All Saints Cathedral, Halifax

Mackay Bennett left Halifax at 12:28 pm on 17 April 1912. Due to heavy fog and rough sears it would take four days to reach where Titanic sank. They began recovery at 0600 on 20 April. Bodies were manually recovered by skiffs and brought back to the ship. They recovered 51 bodies but realized they did not have enough embalming supplies on hand. Since the laws at the time required bodies to be embalmed before unloading from ships docking in a Canadian port, they followed a general procedure:

  • First class passengers were embalmed and placed in coffins
  • Second class passengers were embalmed but wrapped in canvas
  • Third class passengers were buried at sea

Bodies that were brought back were either transported by relatives to their final resting place or interred in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Titanic Chronology: 17 April 1912:The Grim Task of Collecting Bodies

CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884) Artist Unknown Public Domain
CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884)
Artist Unknown
Public Domain

With confirmation that Titanic sank with great loss of life, the next task was to collect bodies floating in the Atlantic. The cable ship Mackay Bennett was the first ship hired by White Star (others would be employed as well)to retrieve bodies. The ship emptied itself of its normal stores in Halifax, Nova Scotia and brought aboard supplies for its new mission:

  • Embalming supplies and coffins (100)
  • Chief embalmer of John Snow & Co.,John R. Snow Jr.
  • 100 tons of ice to store the bodies
  • Canon Kenneth Hind of All Saints Cathedral, Halifax

Mackay Bennett left Halifax at 12:28 pm on 17 April 1912. Due to heavy fog and rough sears it would take four days to reach where Titanic sank. They began recovery at 0600 on 20 April. Bodies were manually recovered by skiffs and brought back to the ship. They recovered 51 bodies but realized they did not have enough embalming supplies on hand. Since the laws at the time required bodies to be embalmed before unloading from ships docking in a Canadian port, they followed a general procedure:

  • First class passengers were embalmed and placed in coffins
  • Second class passengers were embalmed but wrapped in canvas
  • Third class passengers were buried at sea

Bodies that were brought back were either transported by relatives to their final resting place or interred in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

MacHighway - Web Hosting for Mac Users, by Mac Users, Since 1997

Titanic Chronology: 17 April 1912:The Grim Task of Collecting Bodies

CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884) Artist Unknown Public Domain
CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884)
Artist Unknown
Public Domain

With confirmation that Titanic sank with great loss of life, the next task was to collect bodies floating in the Atlantic. The cable ship Mackay Bennett was the first ship hired by White Star (others would be employed as well)to retrieve bodies. The ship emptied itself of its normal stores in Halifax, Nova Scotia and brought aboard supplies for its new mission:

  • Embalming supplies and coffins (100)
  • Chief embalmer of John Snow & Co.,John R. Snow Jr.
  • 100 tons of ice to store the bodies
  • Canon Kenneth Hind of All Saints Cathedral, Halifax

Mackay Bennett left Halifax at 12:28 pm on 17 April 1912. Due to heavy fog and rough sears it would take four days to reach where Titanic sank. They began recovery at 0600 on 20 April. Bodies were manually recovered by skiffs and brought back to the ship. They recovered 51 bodies but realized they did not have enough embalming supplies on hand. Since the laws at the time required bodies to be embalmed before unloading from ships docking in a Canadian port, they followed a general procedure:

  • First class passengers were embalmed and placed in coffins
  • Second class passengers were embalmed but wrapped in canvas
  • Third class passengers were buried at sea

Bodies that were brought back were either transported by relatives to their final resting place or interred in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

MacHighway - Web Hosting for Mac Users, by Mac Users, Since 1997

Titanic Chronology: 17 April 1912:The Grim Task of Collecting Bodies

CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884) Artist Unknown Public Domain
CS Mackay Bennett (circa 1884)
Artist Unknown
Public Domain

With confirmation that Titanic sank with great loss of life, the next task was to collect bodies floating in the Atlantic. The cable ship Mackay Bennett was the first ship hired by White Star (others would be employed as well)to retrieve bodies. The ship emptied itself of its normal stores in Halifax, Nova Scotia and brought aboard supplies for its new mission:

  • Embalming supplies and coffins (100)
  • Chief embalmer of John Snow & Co.,John R. Snow Jr.
  • 100 tons of ice to store the bodies
  • Canon Kenneth Hind of All Saints Cathedral, Halifax

Mackay Bennett left Halifax at 12:28 pm on 17 April 1912. Due to heavy fog and rough sears it would take four days to reach where Titanic sank. They began recovery at 0600 on 20 April. Bodies were manually recovered by skiffs and brought back to the ship. They recovered 51 bodies but realized they did not have enough embalming supplies on hand. Since the laws at the time required bodies to be embalmed before unloading from ships docking in a Canadian port, they followed a general procedure:

  • First class passengers were embalmed and placed in coffins
  • Second class passengers were embalmed but wrapped in canvas
  • Third class passengers were buried at sea

Bodies that were brought back were either transported by relatives to their final resting place or interred in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

MacHighway - Web Hosting for Mac Users, by Mac Users, Since 1997

Picture of Titanic Dead on Mackay Bennett Up For Auction

(Photo Courtesy George Behe)
(Photo Courtesy George Behe)

Up till now, there were no photos of burials at sea done aboard Mackay Bennett when it recovered Titanic victims. Victims who could be identified were brought back for burial by relatives. Those that could not be identified or third class who could not afford a funeral were buried at sea. Now Henry Aldridge and Son, who seem to have a franchise on Titanic memorabilia and rare antiques, have a photo up for auction that shows a mass funeral taking place. The photo was taken by Westy Legate, fourth officer of the ship.

The photo shows body bags on the ship’s deck, two men appearing to tip a stretcher that carries a body into the sea, the ship’s priest Reverend Hind conducting a service, and members of the crew standing nearby.

Apparently another crew member’s family got possession of the photo and are now putting it up for auction. The pre-sale estimate is £5,000 ($8,000). Considering how rare this photo is, that figure seems low for a one-of-a-kind item. Then again it may sell for three times that amount at auction. Henry Aldridge is quoted in the Daily Mail saying:

“This picture blows away the myth that the burials were an orderly and dignified process. You can clearly see the bodies in brown sacks piled up on the deck, with some piled two or three high.”

What myth is he referring to here? Most of the accounts I have read (and admittedly I have not read them all) generally relay it was a mass burial. Now perhaps to console grieving relatives not all details were included (like stacking bodies on the decks) but that is hardly a myth. It is hardly surprising that they would need to stack bodies on the deck, considering the numbers involved. Since it was a burial at sea, this would be a necessity.

Source: Rare Picture Shows Priest Praying Over Titanic Victims Before They Are Buried At Sea(29 Sep 2013, Daily Mail)