Page 102 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 10 -13
P. 102
JOSEPH THOMAS WHEAT, Sworn. Further examined by the SOLICITOR-GENERAL. 13186. (The Solicitor-General.) You will remember, my Lord, he described what happened up to the time when he saw the water fall down the stairway from A deck to F deck, and he had just told us that he had gone up the stairway on his way to the upper deck. (To the Witness.) That is right, is it not? - Yes, Sir. 13187. I think you can tell us now [what] happened when you got to the boat deck? - When I arrived at No. 9 boat Mr. Murdoch was there with quite a number of our men passing women and children over from the port side into No. 9 boat. 13188. When you say “with a number of our men” does that mean with a number of stewards? - Yes; the victualling department. 13189. They were being put into No. 9 boat? - The starboard side. 13190. I think you had been getting your stewards up to their stations, had you not? - Yes, I had just come up from down below after doing that. 13191. Did you hear the orders which Mr. Murdoch gave as to what you were to do? - Yes; he told me to take the rest of the boat’s crew down on to the next deck as they had to send the people off A deck. 13192. This is a little important, and we must get it clear. The next deck would be A deck? - Yes. 13193. Who was it you were to take down to A deck? - Our own men. 13194. The stewards who were to go into different boats as crew? - Yes. 13195. Did you do that? - Yes. I took about 70 men down altogether, I think. 13196. Stewards? - Yes. 13197. When you got your men down to A deck just tell us what you did - how you arranged them? - When we got the men down to A deck, I lined them all up two deep round the boats, for fear there was a rush. 13198. Did that keep a clear space next to the boats? - Yes, about six feet from the bulwarks. 13199. Had you heard the order that women and children were to go forward first? - Yes, that was the general order right through - “women and children only.” 13200. Having had your men up, as you say, two deep round the boats, what was done about the women and children? - First I told the men off to make sure that the plug in No. 11 was in tight, and then I told five or six men, I cannot tell which, to get into the boat to hand the women and children in. Then the order was passed to pass the women and children along. After the women and children were all passed in we filled her up with as many as the boat would possibly hold, and Mr. Murdoch, looking over the top, said, “You have got enough there.” 13201. All this time were you keeping your line of stewards? - No; at that time I was standing with one foot on the rail and one foot on the bulwarks. We were passing women and children into the boat. 13202. You say you arranged your stewards to keep order with two lines; was that order kept after that? - Yes. 13203. And were people kept back? - Yes. 13204. Except the women and children? - Women and children only were allowed inside the line. 13205. That, I think, was No. 11? - Yes. 13206. Is No. 11 the boat in which you went away? - Yes.
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