Henry Tingle Wilde

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Henry Tingle Wilde

RNR
Henry tingle wilde.jpg
Henry Tingle Wilde with his Royal Naval Reserve lieutenant uniform
Born(1872-09-21)21 September 1872
Walton, Liverpool, England
Died15 April 1912(1912-04-15) (aged 39)
RMS Titanic (sunk), Atlantic Ocean
OccupationShip's chief officer
Spouse(s)Mary Catherine Jones (18981910) (her death)
Children6

Henry Tingle Wilde, RNR (21 September 1872 in Walton, Liverpool, England – 15 April 1912) was the chief officer of the RMS Titanic.

Royal Naval Reserve volunteer reserve force of the Royal Navy in the United Kingdom

The Royal Naval Reserve (RNR) is the volunteer reserve force of the Royal Navy in the United Kingdom. The present RNR was formed by merging the original Royal Naval Reserve, created in 1859, and the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve (RNVR), created in 1903. The Royal Naval Reserve has seen action in World War I, World War II, the Iraq War and Afghanistan.

Chief mate profession

A chief mate (C/M) or chief officer, usually also synonymous with the first mate or first officer, is a licensed member and head of the deck department of a merchant ship. The chief mate is customarily a watchstander and is in charge of the ship's cargo and deck crew. The actual title used will vary by ship's employment, by type of ship, by nationality, and by trade: for instance, chief mate is not usually used in the Commonwealth, although chief officer and first mate are; on passenger ships, the first officer may be a separate position from that of the chief officer that is junior to the latter.

RMS <i>Titanic</i> British transatlantic passenger liner, launched and foundered in 1912

RMS Titanic was a British passenger liner that sank in the North Atlantic Ocean in 1912, after colliding with an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City. Of the estimated 2,224 passengers and crew aboard, more than 1,500 died, making it one of modern history's deadliest commercial marine disasters during peacetime. RMS Titanic was the largest ship afloat at the time she entered service and was the second of three Olympic-class ocean liners operated by the White Star Line. She was built by the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast. Thomas Andrews, chief naval architect of the shipyard at the time, died in the disaster.

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Early life

Henry Wilde was christened at the Loxley Congregational Chapel in Loxley, Sheffield on 24 October 1872. He was the son of Henry Wilde, an insurance surveyor from Ecclesfield, South Yorkshire. His mother was Elizabeth Tingle of Loxley, Bradfield. Henry went to sea in his teens. He apprenticed with Messrs. James Chambers & Co., Liverpool. His apprenticeship began on 23 October 1889, on board the 1835-ton Greystoke Castle, and concluded four years later on 22 October 1893. From there, he served as third mate aboard the Greystoke Castle, and then moved on to third mate of the 1374-ton Hornsby Castle. His first steamship posting was aboard the S.S. Brunswick in 1895, where he served initially as third mate, then as second mate. In 1896, he transferred to the S.S. Europa and served aboard her as second mate. In July 1897, he joined the White Star Line.

Loxley United Reformed Church church in the United Kingdom

Loxley United Reformed Church is a derelict Grade II* listed building located on Loxley Road in Loxley, a western suburb of the City of Sheffield, England. It is currently in a fire damaged state.

Loxley, South Yorkshire village in the United Kingdom

Loxley is a village and a suburb of the city of Sheffield, England. It is a long linear community which stretches by the side of the River Loxley and along the B6077 for almost 2.5 miles (4 km). Loxley extends from its borders with the suburbs of Malin Bridge and Wisewood westward to the hamlet of Stacey Bank near Damflask Reservoir. The centre of the suburb is situated at the junction of Rodney Hill and Loxley Road where the old village green stands and this is located 3 miles (5 km) north west of Sheffield city centre. The suburb falls within the Stannington ward of the City of Sheffield.

Third mate

A third mate (3/M) or third officer is a licensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The third mate is a watchstander and customarily the ship's safety officer. The position is junior to a second mate. Other duties vary depending on the type of ship, its crewing, and other factors.

Starting as a junior officer, Wilde rose steadily through the ranks while serving on several White Star ships. These included the Covic, Cufic, Tauric, and Delphic. [1] Tragedy struck in December 1910 when Wilde's wife and twin sons Archie and Richard died. In August 1911, Wilde became Chief Officer of Titanic's sister, the RMS Olympic, where he served under Titanic's future captain, Edward J. Smith.

RMS <i>Olympic</i> transatlantic ocean liner

RMS Olympic was a British transatlantic crossing ocean liner, the lead ship of the White Star Line's trio of Olympic-class liners. Unlike the other ships in the class, Olympic had a long career spanning 24 years from 1911 to 1935. This included service as a troopship during the First World War, which gained her the nickname "Old Reliable". She returned to civilian service after the war and served successfully as an ocean liner throughout the 1920s and into the first half of the 1930s, although increased competition, and the slump in trade during the Great Depression after 1930, made her operation increasingly unprofitable.

Edward Smith (sea captain) Captain of the RMS Titanic

Edward John Smith, RD was a British naval officer. He served as master of numerous White Star Line vessels. He was the captain of the RMS Titanic, and perished when the ship sank on its maiden voyage.

Wilde was an officer of the Royal Naval Reserve, where he was commissioned a sub-lieutenant on 26 June 1902. [2]

Sub-lieutenant is a junior military officer rank.

Titanic

Wilde was scheduled to leave Southampton on Olympic on 3 April 1912 but a reshuffle caused the lowering of a rank of William McMaster Murdoch and Charles Lightoller to First and Second Officer, respectively, with Second Officer David Blair being removed from the ship entirely. On the ship's sailing day, 10 April 1912, Wilde reported for duty at 6:00 a.m. Around the time of departure, he was assisting Lightoller in casting off mooring ropes and in securing of tug lines. After the ship was put to sea, Wilde worked the 2–6 watches.

Southampton City and unitary authority area in England

Southampton is the largest city in the ceremonial county of Hampshire, England. It is 70 miles (110 km) south-west of London and 15 miles (24 km) west north-west of Portsmouth. Southampton is a major port and the closest city to the New Forest. It lies at the northernmost point of Southampton Water at the confluence of the Rivers Test and Itchen, with the River Hamble joining to the south of the urban area. The city, which is a unitary authority, has an estimated population of 253,651. The city's name is sometimes abbreviated in writing to "So'ton" or "Soton", and a resident of Southampton is called a Sotonian.

William McMaster Murdoch British sailor

William McMaster Murdoch, RNR was a Scottish sailor who served as First Officer aboard the RMS Titanic. He was notable as the officer in charge when the Titanic collided with an iceberg. Mystery also surrounds his death.

Charles Lightoller British sailor

Charles Herbert Lightoller,, RNR was the second officer on board the RMS Titanic and a decorated Royal Navy officer. He was the most senior member of the crew to survive the Titanic disaster.

On the Titanic, Wilde wrote a letter to his sister in which he mentioned that he had "a queer feeling about the ship".

At 11:40 p.m., on 14 April, the ship had its encounter with an iceberg. Immediately after the collision, Wilde moved forward to inspect the forepeak and see the flooding for himself. He then came back to the bridge to make a report just before the carpenter arrived. The two reports seem to have convinced Smith that the ship was sinking. While Murdoch was in charge of the evacuation of the starboard boats, with Lightoller for the port side, it appears that Wilde supervised the overall process. He delayed launching the lifeboats and allowed himself twice to be over-ridden by Lightoller going to Captain Smith. He took charge of filling and lowering the even-numbered lifeboats on the port side and also gave firearms to both Lightoller and First Officer Murdoch. By 1:40 a.m., most of the port lifeboats had been lowered, and Wilde moved to the starboard side.

Iceberg A large piece of freshwater ice broken off a glacier or ice shelf and floating in open water

An iceberg is a large piece of freshwater ice that has broken off a glacier or an ice shelf and is floating freely in open (salt) water. Another name for iceberg is "ice mountain". Small bits of disintegrating icebergs are called "growlers" or "bergy bits".

Lightoller, in his article for the Christian Science Journal (Bol. XXX, 10/1912, No. 7), wrote that he was "on my way back on deck again when I heard Wilde say, 'I am going to put on my life-belt'".

Death

There are conflicting accounts of where Wilde was last seen and what he was doing. One survivor said Wilde was trying to free the Collapsibles A and B from the roof of the Officers' Quarters. Another said that Wilde was smoking a cigarette on the bridge, which ties in with an account in the Cornish Post of 2 May 1912, which refers to "Chief Officer H.T. Wilde, who was last seen on the bridge smoking a cigarette". It further claims that he "waved good-bye to Second Officer Charles Lightoller as the Titanic's bows went under".

There is evidence to suggest that an officer, possibly Wilde, swam over to Collapsible B before dying from hypothermia. Third-class passenger Edward Dorking relates that as he was swimming to Collapsible B, a "man who wore an officer's uniform" was swimming behind him in the water. He claimed that they both reached the Collapsible but the officer "became so exhausted he became unconscious. In ten minutes after he struggled over the side of the raft and was safe he was dead." [3] Jack Thayer, a first-class passenger who survived aboard Collapsible B, reported that "questions and answers were called around — who was on board, and who was lost, or what they had been seen doing? One call that came around was, 'Is the chief aboard?' Whether they meant Mr. Wilde, the chief officer.... I do not know.... Nobody knew where the 'Chief' was". [4] [5]

Wilde's body was never recovered.

His name is recorded on a family tombstone at Kirkdale Cemetery in Liverpool, marked by an obelisk and gravestone. The inscription reads, "Also Captain [sic] Henry T. Wilde, RNR Acting Chief Officer Who Met His Death in the SS Titanic Disaster 15th April 1912 aged 38 years [sic]. 'One of Britain’s Heroes'".

Family

Henry's daughter's brother-in-law's wife was the sculptor and artist Alice Bertha Moreton.

Portrayals

See also

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References

Footnotes

  1. Application for Examination for Ex-Masters Certificate, 14 July 1900
  2. "No. 27451". The London Gazette . 4 July 1902. p. 4293.
  3. ON A SEA OF GLASS: THE LIFE & LOSS OF THE RMS TITANIC" by Tad Fitch, J. Kent Layton & Bill Wormstedt. Amberley Books, March 2012. pp 333
  4. 17 Year-Old Titanic Survivor’s Story
  5. Chief Officer Wilde