Man Overboard – Short Snort (Organ) #2

William Muir, a steerage passenger on the Innamincka from Sydney to Innisfail, was lost overboard on Saturday last when the vessel was about ten miles east of Nora Head. The accident occurred at 5.30 p.m. when light was just falling. Muir was seen on the forecastle playing a mouth-organ and skylarking, when the ship rolled and he ran to leeward. Exactly what happened subsequently is not known, but it is thought Muir jumped on to the railings and, failing to catch, hold of the ridge pole of the awning, plunged over the side of the vessel. The chief officer was on the bridge when the accident happened, and he immediately threw over a lifebelt and starboarded the helm to avoid touching Muir with the propeller. Then he stopped the engines, and within three minutes the lifeboat was lowered. Shortly afterwards another lifeboat was lowered, and the search was continued for about two hours. No trace of the unfortunate man was found, however, and after cruising around for an hour the vessel proceeded on her voyage. (Mouth Organ Player Falls Overboard – Huon News, Franklin Tasmania, 21st January 1913.)

Ah, but, yeah nah! Although all the reports at the time highlighted he was playing the mouth organ – at the inquest it was stated after several witnesses were examined that “William Muir was under the influence of liquor, and was dancing to the music of a mouth organ, played by another passenger. (Brisbane Daily Standard, 17th June 1913)

Happy New Month

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