Major Butt appears in the First Class section of the passenger list for those boarding Titanic at Southampton, with his ticket number 113050. Catalogue reference: BT 27/780B folio 17
In 1900, following the outbreak of the Spanish-American War, Butt joined the army and was posted to the Philippines as Assistant Quartermaster with the rank of Captain. Butt remained in Manila until July 1903. In 1904 Captain Butt was appointed Depot Quartermaster at Washington DC and in September 1906 he was transferred to Havana, Cuba, in the same capacity.
In June 1908 President Theodore Roosevelt appointed Captain Butt as his military aide-de-camp. As well as acting as his military adviser, Butt was expected to accompany the President on numerous social tours and excursions. When William Taft took over from Roosevelt as President of the United States he asked Butt to stay on as his military aide-de-camp and in March 1911 he was promoted to the rank of Major. At this point his health was failing and in March 1912, on the advice of friends, doctors and the President, Major Butt embarked upon a six-week tour of Europe with his good friend the artist Francis Millet. Butt and Millet visited Naples, Gibraltar and Rome, where he had an audience with Pope Pius X who gave him a letter to deliver to President Taft.
Major Butt arrived in England following stopovers in Berlin and Paris. At 09:00 on 10 April 1912 he boarded the boat train from King’s Cross station to Southampton, where he embarked on Titanic as a first class passenger with ticket number 113050. Butt’s friend Francis Millet boarded Titanic at Cherbourg, France later that day. Survivor Archibald Gracie gave evidence to the US Senate inquiry that after the ship struck the iceberg, he saw both Butt and Millet in the Smoking Room in the company of two other men. They were making no attempt to save themselves. Major Butt died in the sinking and his body was never recovered.