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Identity certificate of a merchant seaman

The identity certificate and accompanying photograph of Charles Herbert Lightoller, filed in the special index register, 1918-21. According to this, he was born on 30 March 1874, at Chorley, in Lancashire. He was a Chief Officer at the time of discharge from the Merchant Navy into the Royal Naval Reserve, and last served as Master of merchant ship number 113,476 in July and December 1919. What the certificate does not reveal is its name (Celtic), which was found among the crew lists and agreements in The National Archives record series BT 99. It does not say either that he was the senior surviving member of the crew of RMS Titanic, which sank with huge loss of life on 15 April 1912. He was on watch until 10 pm, just under two hours before the vessel struck an iceberg. He lowered and filled several lifeboats and collapsibles before being tossed into the sea as the ship's bow lurched over at 2 am. He gave evidence at the official enquiry held in London.

Catalogue reference: BT 350, fiche number 1541 (Dec 1919)

Identity certificate of a merchant seaman
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