OCR Interpretation


The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, April 30, 1912, Image 3

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1912-04-30/ed-1/seq-3/

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city began to toll at minute inter
vals. Every flag dropped to half
mast, A file of bluejackets march
ed to the government wharf and
cleared it of all 'save,those who
had passes. Thesewere -almost
all undertakers.
The nervous tension of the mo
ment affected the undertakers,
perhaps more than anyone' else.
One gray-haifed carer for the
dead played skipping ropepn the
dock as the morgue-ship drew
in, and those who saw him laugh-.
ed harsh, unnatural laughter.
"There were awnings all around
the government wharf. A cover
ed gangway had been, rigged arid
. heldj-eady to place aboard the
Mackay-Bennett, N There was.
itdthing tp be seen from the out
side, save-the silent marines tin
seritry.duty, and the flapping can
vas ofsthe aWnings topped by the
funnels di the death" ship.'
."The Mackay-Bennett drew
alongside? There were piles of
rude, white pine coffins on her
forward deck. Midships ther
Were little bundles, carelessly
wrapped the clothes of thedead.
After there wasa great tarpaulin
sheet that -was stretched Over the
-twisted bodies tit those for whom
there had beenno coffins.
The first body to be positively
identified was that of John Jacob
AstoT. Captain &oberts, com
mander of the Astor yacht, look
ed long upon the twisted features.
It is he, hesaid.
Then Isidor -Straus' 'body was
identified, and rejrnoved,
And almost1 immediately after,
there came the first-shock of 'dis
appointment to Jtbe spiting rela
tives. ' : '
" The body of George D. Wid
eher probably was not recovered.
And if it was, it was buried at sea.
.A body, the face unrecogniz
able, was picked up by the Mackay-Bennett.
A tag on the clothes
Said. "George D. Widener." It is
now believed the body was that
of'WideneTs valet. The body
was .Jcwered into the sea again.
The sailors of the Mackay
Bennett formed in line, and the
coffins on board were passed
ashore at the rate of tinea minute.
As s,oon as they were ashore, the
bodies were taken, to tend on
stretchers, ahd put into thaco
fi'ns that were waiting on the
dock. -. f
All day long, through the
streets of Halifax, there passed,
silent procession of hearses.
By tomorrow, mos$ of the
bodies, wil Ibe in the Curling rink,
which has been turned into a
huge morgue, wheer We relatives
may come to seek the bodies of
their loyed ones. "
Oh a railroad train one day
there was an inquisitive old lady
who was continually asking ques
tions and annoying all the pas
sengers There was a6 peace for
anyone. Finally she spied a man
wjith only one arm.' -
"Oh, poor'man!" she exclaimed
HoW did you lose your a'rmr" N
"If you promise to ask no more
questions I will tell you.'
The 61d lady promised and he
put .her on pins by replying:
"tt was bit off?"
r
.
&.

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