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<<The S.S. Florizel •Back• Survivor Locations>>

Bowring Timeline

Sources: *All sources in archive

February 19, 1918 (Tuesday)
Florizel inbound from Halifax enters St John's Harbour and anchors midstream, quarantined for smallpox.

February 20, 1918 (Wednesday)
Florizel was permitted to dock at St. John's wharf and passengers and crew were discharged.

February 23, 1918 (Saturday)

9:00 am Storm front had reached Sable Island (south-easterly gales of 45 knots).
4:00 pm First scheduled departure of the Florizel.
Captain William James went on duty replacing Mate John Tucker who was suspected of having smallpox.(James remained on duty until 8:00pm).
5:35 pm Sunset.
6:00 pm Dinner was announced.
7:25 pm Herbert Taylor arrived in the engine room. Engines warmed before sailing. Ship down 1 1/2 ft by stern.
7:30 pm Florizel's final departure time; Martin ordered "Full Astern" and the boat headed into St. John's Harbour (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab V.IV) (also noted by William James and Captain Martin during the Enquiry).
Sish ice encountered, ashes ejected (done every 4 hours) speed would drop 30%.
7:30 pm - 12:00 am Philip Jackman went on duty; triple expansion engine making 69 revolutions.
8:00 pm Fort Amherst was abeam leaving the Narrows southeast-half-south(also noted by Captain Martin during enquiry).
According to William James the weather was mild with southwesterly winds.
Jackman on first watch.
Log prepared but not used due to ice.
According to William James the Florizel sailed through the Narrows.
Herbert Taylor received a "Full Away" from the bridge.
John Johnston went off duty.
Florizel left under no pressure to sail (closing summary of enquiry).
Wind velocity was twenty-six miles per hours, barometer 29.9.
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm Molloy had the wheel.
8:00 pm - 12:00 am Edward Timmons on watch in the engine room.
William Molloy on duty as wheelman.
George Curtis was on duty.
William Dooley was on duty.
According to Dooley three soundings were taken between 10 p.m. - 12 a.m.
Wind could not press ice because it was blowing in the wrong direction.
8:30 pm Florizel passed Cape Spear, it bore W by S (259°) - altered course to south-west (225°) (also noted by Molloy and Martin during enquiry).
Michael Power went below after reporting to deck officer.
Joseph Burry went off shift.
Jacob Pinsent went off duty.
Florizel left the Narrows (closing summary of enquiry).
William James reported to Captain.
Molloy said Cape Spear was 1-½ miles off.
8:30 pm - 9:45 pm Captain and Jackman estimated speed was eight knots however they were actually making six-and-a-half-knots.
8:40 pm Captain altered course again to southwest quarter south (222°) (also noted by Molloy during enquiry).
Approx. time James visited the engine room (the speed was not mention).
8:44 pm Course altered to southwest-quarter-south (closing summary of enquiry).
8:46 pm Jackman began to give directions when Cape Spear was abeam.
Approx. time Gardiner went to bed.
9:00 pm James saw the Captain in the engine room.
According to Thomas Lumsden the pressure was 170lbs making sixty to sixty-five revolutions.
Ledingham in the chief engineer room.
Wind velocity was still twenty-six miles per hour.
9:00 pm - 12:05 am Herbert Taylor was in charge of the engine room.
According to Taylor the temperature in the water was 34°F.
9:15 pm Batteries for auxiliary wireless set tested and found to be in top condition.
Approx. time Jackman uneasy, thinks ships course sagging into Petty Harbour bay. No observations or soundings taken. Visability 1 mile.
9:30 pm Motion Head was abeam and the Florizel was beyond the currents of the bay.
According to Thomas Lumsden the Florizel had finished ejecting the ashes.
Ledingham went to bed.
Discrepancy in evidence whether a course correction was made by Jackman.
9:45 pm Motion Head aft abeam and Bay Bulls light was "pinprick" about 6 to 7 miles along the coast (also noted during the enquiry).
According to Curtis the visibility began to worsen.
Weather began to thicken and snow began to.
Florizel was making seven knots.
9:45 pm - 10:00 pm Captain Martin returns to bridge, states that Motion Head was eight miles abaft.
9:45 pm - 12:00 am The ship continued to sag steadily inshore (enquiry).
10:00 pm Bay Bulls light was bearing about west by south (259°); first snow falling.
Florizel was near Bull Head lighthouse; first sounding was taken.
Wind velocity was twenty-two miles per hour.
Molloy passed wheel to Gover.
10:00 pm - 4:00 am Most distance lost.
10:10 pm First sounding tube dropped over the side.
10:20 pm Dooley and Gover returned with the tube (lead ran out 160 fathoms and found sandy bottom).
Martin noted 80 fathoms in his logbook.
Sight of land lost; Bay Bulls light three points on starboard bow (last definite position).
Martin figured they were three miles off shore and roughly twelve miles along the coast from Cape Spear.
10:30 pm According to James there was a swell on the port bow.
Major Sullivan left the smoking room.
Lumsden went to bed.
James went to bed (his quarters were on the port side).
11:00 pm Major Sullivan and Thomas McNeil took a stroll on the promenade deck and noticed that the ice was just thick enough to keep the sea from breaking.
A second sounding was taken; Captain Martin was satisfied with the depth.
Wind velocity was twenty-five miles per hour.
Florizel was making six-and-a-half knots.
11:55 pm Another sounding taken (lead ran out 170 fathoms and found a sandy and rocky bottom)(also noted by Phillip Jackman during the enquiry).
Florizel seven to eight miles southward of last sounding, thirty miles roughly from Cape Spear, twenty seven miles from Cape Race.

February 24, 1918 (Sunday)

12:00 am Watch changed and course was altered to south-southwest (203°)(To avoid the Bantams)(also noted during enquiry).
Charles Bailey replaced Molly as wheelman.
John King took over watch from Philip Jackman.
Eric Collier relieved Herbert Taylor (Collier on duty until 4:00am).
Despite the alteration in course she carried steadily towards land (Enquiry).
Florizel was already five hours behind schedule.
Thomas Hennebury took over watch in the engine room for Edward Timmons.
Major Sullivan returned to the smoking room (Joe Kean and J.P. Kieley were there).
According to Thomas Green the weather began to thicken.
Martin believed Cape Broyle bore west-three-quarters-south (262°) nearly.
Wind velocity was thirty-three miles per hour.
Winds affected ships speed.
Florizel was making five-and-a-half knots.
Hatchard went on watch.
12:00 am - 1:00 am Speed continued to drop (to 4 knots) (enquiry).
12:00 am - 2:00 am Cape Spear recorded wind and storm.
Cape Spear records indicate high winds and heavy seas.
12:00 am - 4:00 am Greatest loss of speed (enquiry).
Thomas Green, the quartermaster went on duty.
Eric Collier was on watch.
12:00 am - 5:00 am According to Dunfield, a series of soundings during this time would have shown the Captain that he was not on the course he should have been (also noted in closing summary of enquiry)
12:10 am Taylor went off duty after checking the engine room.
12:15 am Taylor went to sleep.
1:00 am Wind velocity was thirty-six miles per hour.
Florizel was making five knots.
Edward Timmons went to bed.
Hatchard relieved Bailey.
1:30 am The time those in St.John's assumed the Florizel must have run aground (assuming she was traveling at regular speed).
1:55 am According to Timmons the engines began to race due to sea conditions.
2:00 am Marconi operator Cecil Sidney Carter went off duty and his assistant Bernard John Murphy took over (also noted during enquiry).
Ferryland recorded wind south-southeast, a real storm with wet snow and rain; terrible sea during the night (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab).
Major Sullivan went to sleep in the social hall.
Bernard John Murphy went on duty.
Green relieved Bailey in the wheelhouse.
Wind velocity was thirty miles per hour.
Florizel was making five-and-a-half knots.
2:15 am According to Collier the engine raced worst during this time.
2:30 am Cross - sea merged with the swell.
Engine stopped racing; revolutions and speed decreased.
3:00 am Captain’s estimated time of arrival at Cape Race (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab)(explained by Captain Martin during the Enquiry).
Barometer had dropped to 29.10; visibility had increased up to 1 mile.
Gunner Hatchard saw a flash of light abaft the beam (also seen by John R. King)but does not report the sighting.
Wind velocity was twenty-eight miles per hour.
Florizel was making five-and-a-half knots.
Florizel was out of ice.
3:30 am Florizel sailed into clear but extremely rough water, which tossed the boat violently.
According to Eric Collier the water was 34°.
3:45 am Harry Snow was called to clear the water coming in through the portholes.
Lumsden returned to engine room (engine making 63 revolutions).
4:00 am Captain Martin decided to "Haul her over" as he thought they passed Cape Race; he changed the course to west-southwest (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab) (also noted by Thomas Green and William Molloy during the enquiry)(also noted in the closing summary of the enquiry).
Heavy rolling due to the fact that the ship was very close to the Bull Head and Renews Bantams (enquiry).
Visibility had improved to about 1 mile.
Jose Fernandez went on watch as a fireman.
William James went back on duty.
Murphy received a transmission from H.M.Wireless station Mount Pearl, the last contact recieved.
Alex Ledingham woke due to the rolling of the ship.
Molloy went back on duty at the wheel.
Charles Reelis woke up to clear the water out of the social hall.
Phillip Jackman went to the fiddley.
Wind velocity was thirty-two miles per hour.
Portlights began to leak.
According to James visability was ¾ of a mile.
4:00 am - 4:50 am According to Lumsden the engines were regular during this period of time.
Heavy rolling due to closeness to Bantams.
4:10 am Approx. time Captain came to the bridge from chart room.
4:15 am James Dwyer awoke to a leak in his room.
4:30 am The cargo let go in hold #2.
James was ordered to put the log out; Gover made a mistake and cast the lead instead.
Major Sullivan woke up due to the rolling of the ship.
Johnston secures items in the storeroom.
Florizel was one mile off Renews Rock.
The sounding taken showed the depth at forty-five fathoms. If the ship was on track the depth would have been ninety fathoms.
4:40 am Captain Martin ordered an alteration in course to west by south in order for the ship to go around Cape Race (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & lab) (also noted by William James during the Enquiry)(also noted in closing summary of enquiry).
Power got ready to fix the unsecure cargo in hold #2.
Pinsent was called to secure the cargo in hold #2.
Approx. time Sullivan went to Munn’s room.
4:43 am According to James the log went out.
4:45 am According to Dooley, he and Gover cast out the log.
Approx. time Henry Dodd went to gallery.
Florizel struck reef at Horn Head.
4:50 am Florizel struck at Horn Head near Cappahayden.
Florizel ran aground (closing summary of enquiry).
first news of Florizel was picked up by Admiralty Wireless Station at Mt. Pearl {S.O.S Florizel Ashore Near Cape Race; Fast Going to Pieces}.
According to James and Major Sullivan (in passage way) the Florizel struck at Horn Head.
Archibald Gardner woke due to shouting.
According to Dooley, he and Gover were taking in the log when she struck.
Dwyer was in the alleyway.
Johnston was in the pantry.
Fleet was bailing out water in room 29.
Lumsden put the Florizel in full reverse.
Roberts was in bed.
Moore was in bed.
Parmiter was in his room.
Curtis jumped down through No. 3 hatch to warn the others.
Telegraph was full ahead.
The seas came over the ships deck immediately.
4:52 am Approx. time Davis left the engine room.
Approx. time Murphy started the generator (takes 1 1/2 minutes).
There was no answer in the engine room when the bridge called down.
4:55 am Approx. time water rushed into the engine room.
Approx. time Sullivan rushed back into Munn’s room.
Approx. time Lumsden stopped regular engine and left the engine room after setting the generator to max.
Approx. time fore topmast wrecked.
Approx. time Power and Molloy cut Boat No.1 loose.
Approx. time Starboard boats wrecked.
5:00 am Sending S.O.S from Florizel to Admiralty Wireless Station Mount Pearl.
Wind velocity was twenty-eight miles per hour.
Approx. time Fagan reported five inches of water in alley.
Approx. time lights went out. Generator fails.
Approx. time Kieley and Keough arrived in Room 2.
Approx. time Denief arrived at the saloon.
Approx. time Cantwell and Dalton left their stateroom.
Approx. time Charles Reelis was at the starboard side of smoking room with Smythe and Mc Neil.
5:00 am - 5:30 am Mr. F. Ellis (shipping agent for Bowring Brothers) received the news of the wreck and told Mr. Eric A. Bowering.
Attempts to contact Florizel by Cape Race and Admiralty wireless stations failed.
5:03 am Approx. time Murphy returns to Marconi House and reports the ships location to Carter.
5:10 am Approx. time Sullivan arrived at the wheelhouse.
Approx. time Mr. Butler’s bag, which contained ten thousand dollars, was lost to the sea.
Approx. time Reelis arrived at Marconi House.
5:15 am H.M. Wireless station Mount Pearl Commander MacDermott contacted the Honorable John Crosbie to inform him about the S.O.S received (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab)(also noted by John C. Crosbie during the enquiry).
Approx. time Davis, Fernandez and Fagan arrive at Marconi House.
Approx. time Dauphinee arrived at the Smoke Room.
5:25 am The upper bridge was destroyed with fifteen swept overboard.
Approx. time Timmons arrived at the fiddley.
Approx. time Molloy was saved from the wreckage by Dooley.
Approx. time Curtis arrived at the Marconi House.
5:35 am Approx. time Power arrived at the fiddly.
6:00 am Captain’s estimated time to be around Cape Race and heading towards Halifax.
According to Captain Simonsen the S.S Hawk was steamed up.
Approx. time Power arrived at the Marconi House.
Approx. time Dauphinee left smoking room deck and headed for boat deck ladder.
Approx. time Keough died.
John Crosbie joined the rescue efforts.
6:06 am Johnston and Denief reached the Marconi House.
6:30 am Weather began to improve.
According to Crosbie, Tasker Cook arrived at the Crosbie home.
6:52 am Sunrise.
Approx. time Captain noticed Munn and others on smoking room deck.
Approx. time Dwyer arrived at the smoking room.
Approx. time Cantwell left the smoking room and headed for the Marconi House.
Approx. time Joseph Stockley arrived at the Marconi House.
7:00 am Scheduled time for the to sail to Harbour Grace - when the Captain heard of the disaster he prepared to be sent to the wreck sight.
James was in the fiddley with Charles Bailey when he was washed away.
Approx. time Timmons, Cantwell and Snow arrived at the Marconi House.
Approx. time Dauphinee entered the vent.
7:02 am Approx. time Stockley spoke to Bartlett in Marconi House.
8:00 am Captain Ernest Perry steamed up the and waited for orders was steamed up and ready but was still waiting for crew.
According to James, Major Sullivan arrived at the fiddley.
James dragged Ralph Burnham into the fiddley.
Ledingham arrived at the oilers room (Pinsent was already there).
John Stone did not believe the S.S Home would be able to leave at this time.
Approx. time Marconi room began to leak.
Approx. time Fernandez arrived at the fiddley.
Approx. time Bartlett left the Marconi House and was never seen again.
8:30 am Tessier told Mr. Foley of the Bowering Brothers that the S.S Hawk was ready.
9:00 am Tessier and Foley arrived at the dock.
Orders to proceed to the wreck still did not come.
Joseph Moore escaped through the skylight (also noted by J. P. Kieley).
Abram Kean and son on board the S.S Hawk according to Marcus Simonsen.
According to Simonsen the S.S Hawk could have left for the wreck if there had been no counter orders.
9:30 am The time the S.S Gordon C could have left for the wreck if there was no red tape.
S.S Hawk arrived at the Bowring’s wharf.
Approx. time Joseph Burry arrived at the oilers room.
9:50 am Honorable J. G. Stone (Minister of Marine and Fisheries) received information of the wreck from Cape Race wireless station. The nearest ship was 16 hours away and was trying to conserve coal.
10:00 am Last time Mr. Munn was seen alive.
According to Captain Perry the S.S Gordon. C was ordered to get ready.
10:30 am Tessier met with Captain A. Kean and Crosbie.
11:00 am Message from operator at Cappahayden {Florizel was ashore at Horn Head Point was submerged aft to the smokestack with heavy seas and no sign of life}.
Soon after, a message came that five men could be seen on board; several in rigging.
The next message was that several bodies had washed ashore including Captain Joe Kean; ship broken off; no hope for rescue.
According to Crosbie, Bowering finally gave the order for the S.S Hawk and the S.S Gordon C to head to the wreck.
According to James, Sullivan went to the Marconi House.
11:30 am S.S Gordon C was finally given orders to head to the wreck followed by the S.S Terra Nova (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab V. IV) (also noted by Capt. Perry during the enquiry).
S.S Prospero left Marystown and headed toward the wreck.
Relief train left for Renews Train Station with Dr. MacPherson and Anderson and a medical team on board.
Simonsen received from Tessier that the Florizel was submerged- R.N. personnel from Mount Pearl Wireless Station were cancelled.
11:55 am According to Crosbie, the relief train left for Renews.
12:00 pm Three steamers ready to leave with supplies and safety equipment: S.S Gordon C (Capt. Perry), S.S Home (Capt. Parsons and Spracklin), S.S Terra Nova (Capt. Kennedy).
Generally feared "all hands" were lost with the ship.
Corp. Snow was swept away from the lee of the saloon (He was wearing his life belt).
Major Sullivan arrived at the fiddley.
According to Ledingham, Captain Martin and Dooley arrived at oilers room.
Dwyer arrived at the fiddley and remained there until the rescue.
Smoking room and bridge were destroyed by this time.
12:30 pm S.S Hawk was still discharging coal while an anxious Abram Kean waited with John Crosbie to get the orders to proceed with the wreck.
According to Power the Captain and Dooley first proposed the lifeline theory.
According to Crosbie, the coal was unloaded from the S.S Hawk.
According to Tessier, the coal emptied and rescue supplies placed on the S.S Hawk then Crosbie ordered work to halt.
12:45 pm S.S Home steamed through the narrows with a crew that included would-be Florizel passengers Samuel Cooper and Walter Reid (also noted by John Stone during the enquiry).
S.S Home left followed by the S.S Hawk.
1:00 pm According to Simonsen the R.N. reservisits were recalled.
Tessier believed the S.S Hawk could have left for the wreck at this time.
1:20 pm S.S Home passed the S.S Terra Nova with the S.S Gordon C one mile ahead.
1:45 pm Tessier received a message that there were signs of life on the Florizel.
2:00 pm Message was sent to Cyril Tessier that there was evidence of life and that the Marconi House, forward deck and forecastle were still intact.
Major Sullivan went to the Marconi House.
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm Rescue train arrives at Renews with medical personnel.
William James noticed the sea was calming a little.(Also noticed by Michael Power who noted that Maloney could have been saved during this calm).
2:30 pm According to Simonsen the R.N. reservists arrive.
3:00 pm S.S Hawk (Capts. Simonsen and Dalton) with acetylene lamps on board; left for the wreck.
3:44 pm S.S Hawk was about to head towards the wreck but was delayed because they had to put ashore two children that had stowed away (also noted by Cyril Tessier during the enquiry).
4:00 pm Doctors and medical team arrived in Cappahayden by horse and cart from Renews station.
Rev. Fr. Doutney wired that the ship was holding fast in moderate sea; no rescue attempt was made; no lives saved thus far.
According to Simonsen the S.S Hawk left for the wreck he felt they could have been gone since 8:00 am.
4:30 pm Doctors and medical staff arrive in Renews.
5:00 pm S.S Gordon C at the wreck (it is assumed that S.S Terra Nova arrived soon after)(also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab V.IV).
According to James a dory attempted to get to the ship but failed.
5:30 pm According to Captain Perry the S.S Gordon C arrived at the wreck.
5:36 pm Sunset.
Approx. time Dauphinee arrived at the Marconi House.
5:58 pm According to John Stone the S.S Home arrived at Horn Head (also noted in Wreck Report).
6:00 pm S.S Home with John Stone aboard arrived at Horn Head (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab V. IV).
Second message sent to Mr. Tessier {Men still on deck forward, sea moderating, two steamers in sight}.
Two men seen in the Marconi House; others seen waving handkerchiefs and flashing flashlights.
6:30 pm According to Captain Perry the S.S Gordon C. left the wreck sight and headed for Fermuse to send messages to St. John's.
6:40 pm S.S Home sent out their first lifeboat - it was unsuccessful (also noted in wreck report).
8:00 pm First unsuccessful lifeboat returned to the S.S Home.
8:10 pm According to Simonsen the S.S Hawk arrived at the wreck.
9:00 pm S.S Hawk arrived on the scene (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab V. IV)(also noted in wreck report).
Approx. time the S.S Hawk sent up rockets and recieved a response from the Florizel (given that the S.S Hawk arrived at 8:10 pm not 9:00 pm, as noted by Cassie Brown).
9:30 pm Message recieved from Captain Perry that the Florizel was submerged and that the S.S Gordon C went as close as possible but it was impossible to get on board.
11:30 pm S.S Gordon C left Fermuse and headed towards the wreck.

February 25, 1918 (Monday)

1:00 am S.S Prospero arrived and immediately launched lifeboats but they were overturned (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab V. IV) (also noted by A. Sparkes in eye witness account) (also noted in Wreck Report).
1:25 am Captain Spracklin ordered second lifeboat lowered.
1:30 am According to Captain Perry the S.S Gordon C left Fermuse heading towards the wreck site.
2:30 am Major Sullivan gave his flashlight to the Marconi operator and left the Marconi House.
3:00 am J.P. Kieley escaped through the skylight and went to the Marconi House.
Approx. time Carter sent a message to the S.S Prospero that there were forty people on board using a flashlight and morse code.
3:30 am S.S Prospero attempts to get a line to the Florizel and fails.
Message sent from Cook to Bowring that a skiff and crew were headed to the Florizel as soon as day breaks.
According to Captain Perry the S.S Gordon C arrived at the wreck.
4:00 am The S.S Gordon C and the S.S Terra Nova come back to the wreck after docking in Fermuse and Renews for the night.
Perry and Pierson got in a lifeboat and attempted rescue.
During their third attempt at rescue Simonsen was informed that there were forty people on board.
S.S Gordon C sent out a lifeboat towards the wreck.
4:35 am S.S Terra Nova and S.S Gordon C arrive.
5:00 am S.S Hawk, S.S Home and S.S Prospero standing half a mile off the wreck attempt to send three lifeboats but the seas are too heavy; a light can still be seen from the ship.
5:30 am Approx. time Kitty Cantwell and Minnie Denief were rescued and brought to the S.S Gordon C.
5:35 am Third lifeboat lowered from S.S Home.
6:00 am A lifeboat from the S.S. Gordon was the first to reach the Florizel and successfully rescue five people.
7:00 am Rescue ship's crews take off 25 men in lifeboats.
Lifeboats from the S.S Hawk.
Perry was in the lifeboat from the on its fifth attempt when it capsized.
8:00 am All survivours (44 in total) were rescued from the Florizel (also noted in the Daily News)(also noted in wreck report).
8:30 am S.S Hawk, S.S Gordon C and S.S Prospero and Cappahayden and headed for St. John’s Harbour.
10:45 am Perry woke up on the S.S. Home.
12:15 pm Rescue ships arrived in St. John's with the survivors.
1:00 pm Rescue steamers arrived in St. John's with the survivors.

February 27, 1918 (Wednesday)
Stone, Tasker and Taylor go to Fermuse by train to aid in body recovery.

February 28, 1918 (Thursday)
5:38 pm: Stone, Tasker and Taylor arrived back in St. John's on the S.S Terra Nova.

March 2, 1918 (Saturday)
S.S. Ingraham with special crew headed for Cappahayden for the purpose of further search and recovery.

March 5, 1918 (Wednesday)
Marine Court of Enquiry began (also noted in Shipwrecks of Nf & Lab V. IV). The S.S. Ingraham arrived back in St. John's.

March 9, 1918 (Saturday)
The bodies of Joe Kean, John Munn, Betty Munn, Evelyn Trenchard, Tom McNeil and Patrick Laracy were found.

March 11, 1918 (Monday)
Delay in departure for sealing fleets in order for crew to attend Joe Kean's funeral.

March 21, 1918 (Thursday)
William Dooley was arrested for murder - he was later exonerated.

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