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A survivor rescued after the sinking of the Titanic wrote as follows:
“I was beside Henry B. Harris, the theatrical manager, when he bade his wife good-by. Both started toward the side of the boat where a lifeboat was being lowered. Mr. Harris was told it was the rule for women to leave the boat first.
“‘Yes, I know. I will stay,’ Harris said. Shortly after the lifeboats left, a man jumped overboard. Other men followed. It was like sheep following a leader.
“Capt. Smith was washed from the bridge [of the ship] into the ocean. He swam to where a baby was drowning and carried it in his arms while he swam to a lifeboat which was manned by officers of the Titanic. He surrendered the baby and swam back to the steamer.
“About the time Capt. Smith got back there was an explosion. The entire ship trembled. I had secured a life preserver and jumped over. . . .”
From Miss Daisy Minaham: An account of the men’s bravery aboard the Titanic:
“I never saw such composure and cool bravery in my life as the men of the first and second cabins displayed. Colonel Astor seemed to be the controlling figure. He, Major Butt, Mr. Guggenheim, Mr. Widener and Mr. Thayer clustered in a group as if they were holding a quick consultation as to what steps should be taken next.
“Then Col. Astor came forward with the cry, ‘Not a man until every woman and child is safe in the boats.’
“. . . Then, when it was time to go, when the last boat was being lowered to the water line, we were hurried into it by my brother, who bade us good-by and said calmly but with feeling: ‘Be brave; no matter what happens, be brave.’ Then he waved his hand and our boat shot out just in time to escape being borne down by the suction of the Titanic, as it went down.
“. . . I shall never forget the calmness and quiet bravery that the men on board showed as they stood on deck and awaited the inevitable doom.”
–Selections from Sinking of the Titanic: The World’s
Greatest Sea Disaster, 1912