British Wreck Commissioner's Inquiry

Day 2


Examined by Mr. DUNLOP.

374. Were you an able seaman on board the "Lusitania”?
- Yes.

375. At 2 p.m. on the day she was lost were you on watch in the crow's nest?
- Yes.

376. Was it your duty to look out on the starboard side?
- Yes.

377. Had you another man with you in the crow's nest whose duty it was to look out on the port side of the ship?
- Yes.

378. After you had been there for a few minutes, did you see something in the sea?
- Yes.

379. What was it?
- I saw a torpedo coming and I saw the submerge, but I never saw the submarine itself. I reported it by word of mouth to the bridge.

380. Did you see the torpedo strike the ship?
- Yes, I waited there until it did.

381. Where did it strike?
- It struck right amidships near No. 5 boat and splintered No. 5 boat to pieces.

382. Did you hear any orders from the bridge?
- I got orders to report anything I saw even if I saw a broomhandle.

383. I mean after the explosion?
- No. After the explosion I did not receive any orders front the bridge of any sort.

384. Did you come down and go to your boat?
- Yes, I come down and went to No.3 boat.

385. The Commissioner: Can you tell us from what direction the torpedo was coming. Was it coming end on to the starboard side of the ship?
- It was coming, as far as I could say, from a range abaft the foremast. It was about 200 yards away.

386. Do you mean to say when you first saw it it was about 200 yards away?
- The submerge was about 200 yards away; she was going down.

387. Did you ever see the submarine?
- I did not see the submarine.

388. You saw nothing but the torpedo?
- I saw only the break of the water like the letter "T".

389. How far was the torpedo away from the ship when you first saw it?
- I think it would be about 100 yards - fully 100 yards.

390. Was it coming straight, end on?
- Straight, right correct for the ship. She could not have got clear had she been going a hundred knots.

391. Was it directly beam on?
- No, it was coming right forward, as far as I could see; the submarine was ahead of us waiting for us, and it came right direct abaft the foremast. The ship was going about 17 or 18 knots.

(The Witness withdrew.)