There is a lot of exciting and out of the ordinary reading that covers a wide variety of topics in this issue.
We are pleased and proud to honor one of our long time members: At age 108, Frank Woodruff Buckles, of Charles Town, West Virginia, is the only living American veteran of World War One. Of more significance to those interested in the history of the Titanic, Mr. Buckles is also one of the last (or perhaps ~ last) living passengers who traveled aboard Carpathia.
We’re all familiar with the story of David and Goliath because one man beat the odds. The Odyssey of Sargeant William Michael Sharpe is about an individual bucking another behemoth––bureaucracy. Sergeant William W. Sharpe was recorded as having been killed when HMHS Britannic was sunk in the Kea Channel but the curious thing is that while the Mikra memorial was specifically created to list all of the British servicemen killed in the Aegean who had no grave but the sea, a simple check of the records would have confirmed that in actual fact Sharpe’s name did not belong there. The reason for this is simple––the official records clearly state that he died and was buried on the island of Kea. Thanks to Simon Mills who fought the good fight, a beneficial outcome came from his persistent efforts.
The 45th anniversary convention of the Titanic Historical Society on RMS Queen Mary was one for the books. There were rave reviews from all who attended. A complete review of the programs with lots of colorful photos is inside.
Commander Scott Rogerson’s (United States Coast Guard / International Ice Patrol) address describes their mission at the 2009 Titanic wreath memorial ceremony in New London, Connecticut: “We must never forget the tragic loss of over 1,500 souls on that fateful night. Annually in mid-April, we deploy memorial wreaths over the Grand Banks from an HC-130 out of Air Station Elizabeth City during a regular iceberg reconnaissance patrol.”
An interesting article, An Original Titanic Franked Envelope, is the result of––as technology improves, so too will the creativity of those who attempt to sell “real” Titanic artifacts.
White Star’s Runic (I) was never glamorous like her contemporaries with sumptuous interiors and carrying notable passengers; she was an intermediate cargo liner, a no-frills, functional vessel, and very little of her early years is mentioned; in fact Runic (II) built in 1900, is often mistaken as the same White Star ship. Two featured articles on her life provide some needed visibility especially the rare photos and documents from the Falkland Islands that provide never before published information.
Captain Rostron received many medals and awards for the heroic rescue of survivors of Titanic. In 1976 his grandson made a list for the THS that was published in a 1979 Commutator. Updated information appears in this issue that illustrates some medals in color and answers what became of the silver loving cup presented by Margaret Tobin Brown.
Contents in this Issue
The Odyssey of Sergeant William Sharpe By Simon Mills.
THS’s 45th ANNIVERSARY on Queen Mary “Titanic, The Legacy Continues” THS Convention Committee.
FRANK WOODRUFF BUCKLES: THE LAST LIVING VETERAN OF WORLD WAR I AND THE LAST LIVING PASSENGER ON RMS CARPATHIA By Roger Peckinpaugh.
INTERNATIONAL ICE PATROL’s 2009 WREATH DEDICATION CEREMONY By Commander Scott Rogerson, USCG/IIP.
AN “ORIGINAL TITANIC FRANKED ENVELOPE” By Paul Louden-Brown.
RUNIC, TAMPICAN, IMO, GUVERNOREN By Edward and Karen Kamuda.
GUVERNOREN’S LAST VOYAGE By Edward and Karen Kamuda.
LIST OF DECORATIONS AWARDED TO SIR ARTHUR HENRY ROSTRON By Arthur John Rostron.
SEA POSTE Looking for accurate blueprints of Normandie; thanks for a wonderful convention from Barbara Magruder, Jeff Alderman, Kathleen Ellison, Elaine and Edith Steblecki; who manufactured Titanic’s watertight doors?; interested in S.S. Republic(II); information about a White Star sign; Roger Long’s theory on Titanic breaking in two; Men’s Titanic Society in Washington DC; error in the book, Titanic’s Last Secrets.
BOOK NOTES Reviews by Tim Trower: Angkor the Magnificent by Helen Churchill Candee; Emma Eliza Bucknell, Titanic Survivor by D. Flodin Soderman; S.S. Leviathan by Brent Holt.
A spectacular view of a wave breaking over the bow of an unnamed ship, circa 1903.
Tampican moored next to the Panama Railroad wharf. She would have two more names and several lives in her years of service. Images: Kamuda Collection