||Lifeboat from Titanic
||Lifeboat to Carpathia
|Lewis, Mr Arthur Ernest Read||15||15||3.13|
Commutator #11 contains the article “A Shattered Star Foretells of Disaster!”, about Arthur Lewis. Much of this article relates Mr. Lewis experiences escaping the Titanic, in his own words.
“I jumped out of bed and put one or two things on and went up to the bow of the ship. The water was just coming over her bow. ….
I then went back to mid-ships and climbed up to the Main Deck. … so I went up to the Boat Deck and there was only one boat left. I started getting the cover off when a sailor came and helped me. We got the boat ready for lowering and one of the officers came along and told me to get in the boat. It was then being loaded up with women and children. ….
When the lifeboat was full, we were lowered to the water and we let go of the ropes. We rowed away and took a look back at the ship; her bow was under water and her stern was high in the air."
[n a letter written in later years, (originally at http://www.southampton.gov.uk/s-leisure/artsheritage/history/titanic/accounts/interviews.aspx, but no longer available) he said:
“I went up to the boat deck and I saw one lifeboat left in the corner. I started taking the canvas off when a sailor come and help me and we got the boat slung out. An Officer come along and asked me if I could row. I said ‘Yes, sir.” He said “Get in the boat,” he says, “and take the bow oar.” We were filled up with ladies, with women and children, their husbands were to remain behind, it was very sad, broken hearted.
We were lowered down to the water and we got away, about five, ten minutes, when the ships bow was under the water and the propellers was up in the air. And after another ten minutes we heard a sound as the engines fell off the blocks, and then she just slid down in the water. …. We rowed about all night, ‘til I got picked up in the Carpathia about half past eight in the morning.”
In the British Inquiry, Questions 10020-10021, steward John Hart was asked if a third class steward called Lewis was in boat 15, and he replied that he didn't know all the names. Samuel Rule, Question 9798, also was asked of boat 15 "Was there a man called Lewis with you in that boat?" and he too could not quote names. When the Commissioners asked such questions it was generally because they were checking the accuracy of claims made in the depositions by crew members who would not be giving testimony. It is quite likely that Lewis did name boat 15 in his deposition, though we cannot be positive of this.