|Captain Anxious to Save the Vessel of
|There is a disposition on the part of some survivors of
the steamer 'Clallam' to believe that Captain Roberts risked those on board in the hope of saving
the leaking property of his company. John Davis, of Nanaimo, says he was one of a number
of passengers who remonstrated with Captain Roberts about keeping the passengers on board the
'Clallam' when the 'Holyoke' came to her assistance, and objected to the steamer being taken to
Port Townsend. When the passengers waited on the captain and asked why he did not signal the
'Holyoke' to come and take them off, Capt. Roberts replied:
"I am running this part of it. When I see we are in danger I will signal the tugboat to came back."
After that the steamer was afloat but twenty minutes.
"You think we are all right?" queried Mr. Davis.
"Sure," said the captain. "We can get to Port Townsend all right. The steamer is good for two hours."
"Why don't you run the steamer shore somewhere?" asked Davis.
"I am running this part of it." replied the captain. "They can take us where they like."
"Well, you could have signaled the steamer to come alongside and given instructions then," said Davis.
"I want to save the steamer," replied Capt. Roberts. "That's what I'm looking after now."
Mr. Davis said he thinks Captain Roberts was too anxious to save the steamer. Davis got in the third boat when the launching was taking place about 3:30 p.m. on Friday. While an oiler was hunting for oars, this boat, which contained twenty, including two women, with no one in charge, was capsized alongside the vessel. The oiler grabbed a window wiring and Davis grasped his leg. Both were hauled on board. Another man who grasped a rope was obliged to loose his hold, and was drowned. Davis says he believes the passengers were kept on board the 'Clallam' instead of being placed on the tugs to allow of them assisting in bailing the wreck.