Titanic Survivor’s Letter Describing the Disaster

This letter was written by Titanic survivor Nellie Walcroft shortly after she arrived in New York. Nellie was a second class passenger aboard the Titanic. Over three pages, she describes the tragedy in detail.

The letter reads:

My dearest Clara,

Just a line or two just to let you know we are quite safe. After our terrible experience one would never have believed when you saw me off on that journey before a week was out what I should have to go through. I am glad to say my cold is the only ill effects so far, so Clara to see that magnificent ship like a floating palace go down in the sea was an awful spectacle.

We had 70ft to be let down in the boat & when we were going down the steerage passenger jumped in the boat & our Officer seeing our danger jumped in the boat and shot the men to keep them from swamping us & when nearly to the bottom, the ropes letting the lifeboats down refused to act and they had to cut the rope and we dropped I thought that was my last minute – there was 59 in our boat when we got well away from the ship and after the ship had gone down you should have heard the cries of those poor men and women I could never describe it. It seemed to last about 2 hours that terrible cry of help.

After the cries had After the ship had gone down we had to change our boats to let our officer go back to the rescue and when we got into the boat there were 4 dead men and a madman I think they pushed him overboard. I never saw him again after rowing for 7 hours we got picked up by the Carpathia we shouted for joy when we saw the ship they took us up with ropes & gave us all neat brandy.

There were 710 rescued so that could not put us all up so we slept on tables for 5 days. They were very kind to us indeed in everyway. The suffering was frightful we had 35 women who had lost their husbands on board and one can imagine the agony of these women not knowing if their husbands were living or dead & how glad we was to see New York.

It was in a fever here we were given some clothes directly we came off there was steamer with 100 coffins waiting for the dead but most that died were buried at sea. The flashlights took our photo I was so glad to meet Carl and his friend they soon got cab & we were snap shotted everywhere. There were 70.000 persons roped off in charge of the police they all where (sic) so glad to see us & the world sympathy is ours in New York but I shall never never go on a floating palace again.

Write to me soon send me any recipes you have got there.

With much love, your loving friend, Nell.

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