United States Senate Inquiry

Day 1

Testimony of Joseph Bruce Ismay, cont.

Senator SMITH.
Until the Carpathia overtook them. You have no knowledge of that?

Mr. ISMAY.
Absolutely none, sir.

Senator SMITH.
So far as your observation went, would you say that was not so?

Mr. ISMAY.
I would not say either yes or no; but I did not see it.

Senator SMITH.
When you first went on to the deck, you were only partially clothed?

Mr. ISMAY.
That is all, sir.

Senator SMITH.
And, as I understand, you went as far as to encounter an officer or steward?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
And then returned?

Mr. ISMAY.
That is right.

Senator SMITH.
How long were you on the ship after the collision occurred?

Mr. ISMAY.
That is a very difficult question to answer, sir. Practically until the time - almost until she sank.

Senator SMITH.
How long did it take to lower and load a lifeboat?

Mr. ISMAY.
I could not answer that.

Senator SMITH.
Can you approximate it?

Mr. ISMAY.
It is not possible for me to judge the time. I could not answer that.

Senator SMITH.
Were you on the Titanic an hour after the collision?

Mr. ISMAY.
Oh, yes.

Senator SMITH.
How much longer?

Mr. ISMAY.
I should think it was an hour and a quarter.

Senator SMITH.
An hour and a quarter?

Mr. ISMAY.
I should think that was it; perhaps longer.

Senator SMITH.
Did you, during this time, see any of the passengers that you knew?

Mr. ISMAY.
I really do not remember; I saw a great many passengers, but I do not think I paid much very attention to who they were. I do not remember recognizing any of them.

Senator SMITH.
Did you know Charles M. Hayes?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Did you know of the presence of other Americans and Canadians of prominence?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir; I knew Mr. Hayes was on board the ship.

Senator SMITH.
You knew he was on the ship?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes; I have known him for some years.

Senator SMITH.
But you did not see him after the accident occurred?

Mr. ISMAY.
I never saw him after the accident; no.

Senator SMITH.
And he is unaccounted for?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
He was not among the saved?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
What were the circumstances, Mr. Ismay, of your departure from the ship?

Mr. ISMAY.
In what way?

Senator SMITH.
Did the last boat that you went on leave the ship from some point near where you were?

Mr. ISMAY.
I was immediately opposite the lifeboat when she left.

Senator SMITH.
Immediately opposite?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
What were the circumstances of your departure from the ship? I ask merely that -

Mr. ISMAY.
The boat was there. There was a certain number of men in the boat, and the officer called out asking if there were any more women, and there was no response, and there were no passengers left on the deck.

Senator SMITH.
There were no passengers on the deck?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir; and as the boat was in the act of being lowered away, I got into it.

Senator SMITH.
At that time the Titanic was sinking?

Mr. ISMAY.
She was sinking.

Senator SMITH.
Where did this ship collide? Was it a side blow?

Mr. ISMAY.
I have no knowledge, myself. I can only state what I have been told, that she hit the iceberg somewhere between the breakwater and the bridge.

Senator SMITH.
State that again.

Mr. ISMAY.
Between the breakwater and the bridge.

Senator SMITH.
On the starboard side?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
Did you see any of the men passengers on that ship with life preservers on?

Mr. ISMAY.
Nearly all passengers had life preservers on.

Senator SMITH.
All that you saw?

Mr. ISMAY.
All that I saw had life preservers on.

Senator SMITH.
All of them that you saw?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes; as far as I can remember.

Senator SMITH.
Naturally, you would remember that if you saw it? When you entered the lifeboat yourself, you say there were no passengers on that part of the ship?

Mr. ISMAY.
None.

Senator SMITH.
Did you, at any time, see any struggle among the men to get into these boats?

Mr. ISMAY.
No.

Senator SMITH.
Was there any attempt, as this boat was being lowered past the other decks, to have you take on more passengers?

Mr. ISMAY.
None, sir. There were no passengers there to take on.

Senator SMITH.
Before you boarded the lifeboat, did you see any of the passengers jump into the sea?

Mr. ISMAY.
I did not.

Senator SMITH.
After you had taken the lifeboat did you see any of the passengers or crew with life-saving apparatus on them in the sea?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
What course was taken by the lifeboat in which you were after leaving the ship?

Mr. ISMAY.
We saw a light some distance off to which we attempted to pull and which we thought was a ship.

Senator SMITH.
Can you give the direction of it?

Mr. ISMAY.
I could not give that.

Senator SMITH.
But you saw a light?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
And you attempted to pull this boat toward it?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
How long were you in the open sea in this lifeboat?

Mr. ISMAY.
I should think about four hours.

Senator SMITH.
Were there any other lifeboats in that vicinity?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
How many?

Mr. ISMAY.
That I could not answer. I know there was one, because we hailed her. She had a light, and we hailed her, but got no answer from her.

Senator SMITH.
You got no answer?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Did you see any rafts in the open sea?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir; none.

Senator SMITH.
Were there any other rafts on the Titanic that could have been utilized?

Mr. ISMAY.
I believe not.

Senator SMITH.
Were all of the lifeboats of one type?

Mr. ISMAY.
No; there were four that are called collapsible boats.

Senator SMITH.
What were the others?

Mr. ISMAY.
Ordinary wooden boats.

Senator SMITH.
How many were there?

Mr. ISMAY.
I think there were 20 altogether.

Senator SMITH.
Including both designs?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes. Sixteen wooden boats and four collapsible boats, I think. I am not absolutely certain.

Senator SMITH.
When you reached the Carpathia, was your lifeboat taken aboard the Carpathia?

Mr. ISMAY.
That I do not know.

Senator SMITH.
Did you see any other lifeboats taken aboard the Carpathia?

Mr. ISMAY.
I did not.

Senator SMITH.
What was the method of getting you aboard the Carpathia?

Mr. ISMAY.
We simply walked up a Jacob's ladder.

Senator SMITH.
What was the condition of the sea at that time?

Mr. ISMAY.
There was a little ripple on it, nothing more.

Senator SMITH.
Do you know whether all the lifeboats that left the Titanic were accounted for?

Mr. ISMAY.
I believe so. I do not know that of my own knowledge.

Senator SMITH.
I think it has been suggested that two of them were engulfed.

Mr. ISMAY.
Of that I know nothing.

Senator SMITH.
You would know if that were true, would you not?

Mr. ISMAY.
I have had no consultation with anybody since the accident with the exception of one officer.

Senator SMITH.
Who was that?

Mr. ISMAY.
Mr. Lightoller. I have spoken to no member of the crew or anybody since in regard to the accident.

Senator SMITH.
What was Mr. Lightoller's position?

Mr. ISMAY.
He was the second officer of the Titanic.

Senator SMITH.
How many officers of the ship's crew were saved?

Mr. ISMAY.
I am told four.

Senator SMITH.
Can you give their names?

Mr. ISMAY.
I can not.

Senator SMITH.
Or their occupation?

Mr. ISMAY.
I could not. The only one I know is Mr. Lightoller, who was the second officer.

Senator SMITH.
I understand they are here.

Mr. ISMAY.
I believe so; I do not know.

Senator SMITH.
Mr. Ismay, what can you say about the sinking and disappearance of the ship? Can you describe the manner in which she went down?

Mr. ISMAY.
I did not see her go down.

Senator SMITH.
You did not see her go down?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
How far were you from the ship?

Mr. ISMAY.
I do not know how far we were away. I was sitting with my back to the ship. I was rowing all the time I was in the boat. We were pulling away.

Senator SMITH.
You were rowing?

Mr. ISMAY.
Yes; I did not wish to see her go down.

Senator SMITH.
You did not care to see her go down?

Mr. ISMAY.
No. I am glad I did not.

Senator SMITH.
When you last saw her, were there indications that she had broken in two?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
When did you last see her?

Mr. ISMAY.
I really could not say. It might have been 10 minutes after we left her. It is impossible for me to give any judgment of the time. I could not do it.

Senator SMITH.
Was there much apparent confusion on board when you saw her last?

Mr. ISMAY.
I did not look to see, sir. My back was turned to her. I looked around once only, to see her red light - her green light, rather.

Senator SMITH.
You never saw the captain again after you left him on the bridge?

Mr. ISMAY.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Did you have any message from him?

Mr. ISMAY.
Nothing.

Senator SMITH.
Do you know how many wireless operators there were on board the ship?

Mr. ISMAY.
I do not; but I presume there were two. There is always one on watch.

Senator SMITH.
Do you know whether they survived?

Mr. ISMAY.
I am told one of them did, but I do not know whether it is true or not. I really have not asked.

Senator SMITH.
Were any of this crew enlisted men in the English Navy?

Mr. ISMAY.
I do not know, sir. The ship's articles will show that.

Senator SMITH.
Can you tell us anything about the inspection, and the certificate that was made and issued before sailing?

Mr. ISMAY.
The ship receives a Board of Trade passenger certificate; otherwise she would not be allowed to carry passengers.

Senator SMITH.
Do you know whether that was done?

Mr. ISMAY.
You could not sail your ship without it; you could not get your clearance.

Senator SMITH.
Do you know whether this ship was equipped with its full complement of lifeboats?

Mr. ISMAY.
If she had not been, she could not have sailed. She would not have received her passenger certificate; therefore she must have been fully equipped.

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