Survivor of the Titanic
James P. Anderson Now Third Engineer On Querida
Came Into Port With a Cargo of Pulpwood For the Oswego Falls Pulp and Paper Company - A Graphic Description of the Loss of the Noble Steamer.
James P. Anderson, third engineer on the English tramp steamer Querida , unloading pulpwood for the Oswego Falls Pulp and Paper Company at the Lackawanna trestle, is one of the survivors of the crew of the ill-fated Titanic last in April, 1912, and in which over 1,600 persons, including several New York millionaires, were drowned.
Mr. Anderson is a native of Denmark, but he has traveled the world ove r and speaks English well. He joined the Querida in Jamaica some months ago and has been aboard ever since. He is becoming tired of life below decks, however, and being an expert machinist hopes to get a place in some machine shop this Fall and then spend his remaining days ashore.
It is twelve years since he has seen his native shores. The crew of the Querida is probably one of the most cosmopolitan of any entering at this port. Thee are nine Chinamen employed as firemen, coal passengers and cooks; five West Indian negroes who are deck hands and "donkey" men. The Captain is a native of Norway, the first engineer is from Sweden, and thee is an East Indian half-breed, whose father was a Jap, one Canadian, one Englishman, but no Americans. The Querida has been in the pulpwood business the past several years, and in the Winter is engaged in the South American trade out of New York.
Speaking of his experience on the Titanic, Mr. Anderson said: "I shipped at Southampton in April, 1912, and was a member of the first engineer's staff. My watch on the night of the accident was from 8 to 12 p.m. After being relieved and washing up I went to lunch and then out upon the deck for a smoke and a whiff of fresh air.
"Suddenly there was a crash, big pieces of ice came tumbling to the deck and the bows of the steamer were broken and battered. The in rushing water struck the lower fires and there was an explosion that forced the decks over the boiler amidships. I was standing on the starboard side. Immediately after the boilers burst I could feel the ship sinking, and I jumped into the ocean, a distance from the rail to the water of about fifty or sixty feet.
"The water was full of floating ice. I knew what we had struck, and that the steamer had received her death blow. I struck out for the iceberg, intending to climb upon it, but there was no chance, it presented a face as smooth as that of a cement wall. Then I began to fear the suction where the boat went down and began to swim again, resting at intervals upon the cakes of ice in the sea.
"The water and the air was cold and I found it was more comfortable to keep swimming then to try and float. I could see the lights of the Titanic going out on the various decks as the ship settled. I was about six hundred feet away and I could hear the band playing distinctly. Soon a lifeboat full of women and only one man in it came along. I called and they assisted me in. I had been in the water an hour and a half. A piece of sail cloth was thrown over me and I went to the oars with a will and pulled to keep warm. I saw the steamer when she went down. It was an awful sight as the lights went out.
"As the hull settled the music stopped and the swell of the ocean from the suction told me that the end had come. We kept moving about, following the torches in other boats and then came daylight and the Carpathia and we were saved.
"After recuperating in New York I shipped in the Gracas, engaged in the South American trade and remained there until eight months ago, when I quit and joined the Querida."