United States Senate Inquiry

Day 8

Testimony of Cyril F. Evans, cont.

Senator SMITH.
But he said he was about 30 or 40 miles off?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
How did he happen to say that?

Mr. EVANS.
I asked him. I forget how it happened, now, but he said, "We are 30 or 40 miles off. We are steaming as fast as we can." But this was after I had taken the message up, and we were under way. I said, "We are steaming full speed, now."

Senator SMITH.
I understand you perfectly. He told you that after he had told you the Titanic had sunk?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Did he tell you from whom he obtained the information that the Titanic had sunk?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Do you know from whom he obtained it?

Mr. EVANS.
I did not know until I got in, sir. I only knew from the newspapers and what I said just now.

Senator SMITH.
Did you tell me what the mate said when he woke you up between 3 and 4 o'clock Monday morning?

Mr. EVANS.
He came into my room between 3 and 4; opened the door. He knocked at the door, but I was asleep, and he came in: He said he knocked at the door and then came in.

Senator SMITH.
Was it locked?

Mr. EVANS.
No; we never lock a door on the ship. He came into my room, and I did not wake up, and he caught hold of me. As soon as he touched me I woke up with a start, and he said, "Wireless, there is a ship that has been firing rockets in the night. Will you come in and see if you can find out what is wrong - what is the matter?" I slipped on my trousers and called at once. Within five minutes I knew what had happened.

Senator SMITH.
I believe you had been in communication with the Carpathia the night before, had you not?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH. Had you been in communication with the Parisian?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
What time?

Mr. EVANS.
I got him in the morning, sir, and then - no; I think I got him the day before.

Senator SMITH.
I think I will let you look that up a little later unless you have it handy, there. What time?

Mr. EVANS.
6.30 a. m., New York time, on the 13th of April, exchanged T.R.'s with the Parisian.

Senator SMITH.
Do you know her position at that time?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Did you hear anything from the Amerika on Sunday?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir; not on the 14th.

Senator SMITH.
I do not want to have you take any time to look it up, but do you recall having obtained any communication with the Amerika on Saturday? I will not ask you to trouble yourself. If you have it right there, I would like to know.

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir; I did not.

Senator SMITH.
You did not have any communication with the Amerika?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Did you have any with the Amerika after you left the scene of the Titanic's wreck?

Mr. EVANS.
I do not know; I do not think so.

Senator SMITH.
You can not now recall?

Mr. EVANS.
I can not recall it.

Senator SMITH.
What are your wages per month?

Mr. EVANS.
£4.

Senator SMITH.
And board?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
You have your board on the ship, and room?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
Is that the regulation wage of wireless telegraphers?

Mr. EVANS.
It is for a beginner; yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
Are you paid that by the steamship company or the Marconi Co.?

Mr. EVANS.
By the Marconi Co.

Senator BOURNE.
Did you think it at all strange when you got "Shut up" from the Titanic or is that customary when you break in to prevent the jamming?

Mr. EVANS.
If he was working. He had a lot of messages to get off.

Senator BOURNE.
Do you think he got your full message?

Mr. EVANS.
His signals came in with a bang; therefore my signals must have come in to him very loudly.

Senator BOURNE.
Was he not already engaged in sending to Cape Race at that time?

Mr. EVANS.
He was receiving at the time I sent the message, at the time I communicated with him.

Senator BOURNE.
Would not his attention be directed toward the messages he was receiving from Cape Race, he being in communication with Cape Race, rather than the messages from you, breaking in on the message?

Mr. EVANS.
I do not know about that. He must have received that anyway.

Senator BOURNE.
Can you take more than one message at the same time?

Mr. EVANS.
No; but my signals were the loudest.

Senator BOURNE.
And they would drown out his?

Mr. EVANS.
You would not hear the other one, because, myself, I could not hear Cape Race that night.

Senator BURTON.
You think he must have received your message before he shut you off, because you had the louder note and would have drowned out the message from Cape Race while you were transmitting your message?

Mr. EVANS.
He must have received my communication; yes, sir.

Senator BURTON.
You are very sure of that, are you? You are confident that that must have been the fact - that he received your message, and that while you were transmitting it the other message would have been obscured or drowned out by your message?

Mr. EVANS.
Certainly; yes, sir. Cape Race will only be a whisper and mine would come in with a bang.

Senator BURTON.
Just what was the message that you sent when you received that word, "Shut up." Will you read that again?

Mr. EVANS.
I said, "Say, old man, we are stopped and surrounded by ice."

Senator BURTON.
That is what you said?

Mr. EVANS.
I called him up first. I said, "M.G.Y." three times, and gave him my own call signal once, which is "M.W.H." I said, "Say, old man, we are surrounded by ice, and stopped."

Senator BOURNE.
You gave your location, did you not?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir; I was just giving that as a matter of courtesy, because the captain requested me to.

Senator BOURNE.
You expected a reply from him, or an inquiry as to what your location was, where the ice was, did you not?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir. I thought he was very much south of me, because we were bound for Boston, and we were north of the track. We were following the track of the Parisian.

Senator FLETCHER.
You said the Frankfurt reported that she was 30 or 40 miles off?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator FLETCHER.
Off from you, or off from the Titanic?

Mr. EVANS.
Off from the scene of the disaster.

Senator FLETCHER.
Do you know where the Frankfurt was, as to you?

Mr. EVANS.
Southeast somewhere. He was on the homeward track and he must have been south of us.

Senator FLETCHER.
And the scene of the disaster was in what direction from you at that time?

Mr. EVANS.
I could not exactly say. Between southeast and southwest, I think. I would not be sure of that.

Senator FLETCHER.
Was the Frankfurt between you and the scene of the disaster?

Mr. EVANS.
I do not know, sir.

Senator FLETCHER.
Have you any idea how far the Frankfurt was from you?

Mr. EVANS.
I can only work on that we were about 20 miles away.

Senator FLETCHER.
From what?

Mr. EVANS.
From the Titanic, and therefore he would be 20 miles away from us.

Senator FLETCHER.
You say that the operator on the Titanic was engaged in sending private messages to Cape Race. What do you mean by private messages?

Mr. EVANS.
Messages being handed in by passengers.

Senator FLETCHER.
By passengers, to Cape Race?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator FLETCHER.
And Cape Race to passengers, back and forth?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator FLETCHER.
You do not know from whom they were sent, or to whom they were sent, nor do you recall the nature of the messages?

Mr. EVANS.
No; I do not.

Senator FLETCHER.
You are not supposed to know, anyhow, are you? It would be a violation of rule if you did know, would it not?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir; because when we go up for our examination in England, we have to make a statement saying we will keep the secrecy of correspondence. That is an international convention.

Senator FLETCHER.
Do you know Gill, who was a member of the crew of the Californian - Ernest Gill?

Mr. EVANS.
I think I have seen him; yes, sir.

Senator FLETCHER.
Do you know him when you see him? Did you see him on the ship?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes; I have seen him.

Senator FLETCHER.
Did you ever have any conversation with him about that ship that was seen that night throwing up rockets?

Mr. EVANS.
I think so. Practically everybody on the ship - it has been common talk on the ship.

Senator FLETCHER.
From the talk on the ship do you know when the rockets were seen that night; from what direction?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir; I had turned in.

Senator FLETCHER.
Do you know of the conversation, or statement that was made to Gill, about which he has testified here?

Mr. EVANS.
I do not know, sir. Nearly everybody on the ship has talked amongst themselves, and in front of the other members of the crew, about it.

Senator FLETCHER.
Has he ever said anything to you in reference to his statement or testimony in the case in this matter?

Mr. EVANS.
You mean any special statement he made to me?

Senator FLETCHER.
Yes. Has he ever said anything to you with reference to his statement that he has made in this matter?

Mr. EVANS.
No; I do not think so.

Senator FLETCHER.
Nothing with regard to the circumstances under which he made the statement, or how he came to make it?

Mr. EVANS.
No.

Senator FLETCHER.
Was the instrument on the Californian in good working condition?

Mr. EVANS.
It is the latest set out. It is in thorough working condition. It was inspected by Mr. Binns, last trip.

Senator FLETCHER.
How far can you send messages with it? What is its power as compared with the one on the Titanic?

Mr. EVANS.
The Californian is not a big ship and she is only fitted with 60-volt dynamos, and our sets are made for 100-volt dynamos. Our converter - motor generator - is not made to run over 100 volts. Therefore, I get a little over half the power I should get.

Senator FLETCHER.
Do you know about the instrument on the Titanic?

Mr. EVANS.
It was practically the same pattern as mine, only, I believe, he had a rotary spark - got a musical note. I never got a musical note; but I think he had a rotating spark there.

Senator FLETCHER.
There was no reason why you could not get his messages and he yours?

Mr. EVANS.
Oh, no, sir; except I had turned in. I was off from 7 o'clock that night to half-past 11. It is 16 hours for a man to be on watch.

Senator FLETCHER.
When the mate aroused you and spoke about a ship having been seen sending up rockets, did he make any statement about when that ship was sending, and what kind of rockets?

Mr. EVANS.
No. I slipped on my trousers, and got the phones on my ears inside of two minutes.

Senator FLETCHER.
That was at 4 a.m. on Monday morning?

Mr. EVANS.
That was 3.40 a.m., New York time.

Senator FLETCHER.
What ship's time was that?

Mr. EVANS.
I do not know. I have not worked out the ship's time. I do not know if the ship's clock was changed during that time.

Senator FLETCHER.
Did Gill, the donkeyman, ever talk to you about a story he was telling about the sending up of the rockets by a ship that night?

Mr. EVANS.
I think he may have mentioned it to me.

Senator FLETCHER.
When?

Mr. EVANS.
Everybody on board has been speaking about it amongst themselves.

Senator FLETCHER.
The captain, too?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir. I have never spoken to the captain about the matter of rockets, at all.

Senator FLETCHER.
None of this talk you have heard on the ship was in the presence of the captain?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir.

Senator FLETCHER.
In a general way, what was the talk with reference to that, that you heard on the ship?

Mr. EVANS.
Well, I could not say. It was just simply the usual talk about the rockets.

Senator FLETCHER.
Were the rockets described?

Mr. EVANS.
Not to my knowledge, no, sir. I never heard them described.

Senator FLETCHER.
Do you know whether they were distress rockets, or some other kind of rockets?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir; I do not. I did not see them, myself.

Senator FLETCHER.
As they were mentioned in this talk on the ship?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir; I do not know.

Senator BURTON.
You say everybody was talking on board among themselves about these rockets?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator BURTON.
Do you mean by that that they were saying that they themselves had seen the rockets, or that there was merely talk about it on the ship?

Mr. EVANS.
There was talk about it, and some of them said they had seen it, and some said they had not.

Senator BURTON.
With how many did you talk who said they saw rockets that night?

Mr. EVANS.
Nobody.

Senator BURTON.
Did you talk with anybody?

Mr. EVANS.
No one in particular.

Senator BURTON.
Can you tell anyone you talked with who said he had seen rockets that night?

Mr. EVANS.
No, sir.

Senator BURTON.
What was the wave length on your ship, 300 or 600, or what was it?

Mr. EVANS.
At present it is 600 meters. I have also, according to the telegraph convention, fitted it so as to be able to be used as a 300-meter wave length, if necessary.

Senator SMITH.
You say this message that you got from the Titanic came with a bang?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes; he had very high power; I do know that.

Senator SMITH.
It came with a bang?

Mr. EVANS.
It came, I should say, not absolutely with a bang, but with fairly loud signals. But you can not tell by the strength of the signals where anybody is.

Senator SMITH.
I was going to ask you whether that in itself would indicate your proximity to the ship with which you were in communication?

Mr. EVANS.
It is very hard to answer, because it depends on how a boat is being tuned. I have had boats alongside of me sending and I have replied to them, and their signals were the same as when they were 200 miles away; and other boats I have had 200 miles away with weak signals and when they would get alongside they would come with such a bang you would have to take the telephones away from your ears.

Senator SMITH.
What wave length did you employ when you sent that warning message to the Titanic Sunday night?

Mr. EVANS.
600 meters.

Senator SMITH.
That is the maximum wave length prescribed by the Berlin convention, is it not?

Mr. EVANS.
That is the wave length prescribed for ship's stations and for stations.

Senator SMITH.
And the minimum is 300?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes; especially -

Senator SMITH.
And you used your 600 wave length?

Mr. EVANS.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
You do not know the wave length employed by the Titanic in response to that message?

Mr. EVANS.
His would be 600, too.

Senator SMITH.
That is, you think he would use his maximum wave length?

Mr. EVANS.
He could not change his wave length in that time.

Senator SMITH.
He could not change it?

Mr. EVANS.
No. Unless the station is tuned -

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