Tracy S. Morris

Quirky Mysteries, Screwball Fantasy and Sassy History

I’m Not Making This Up – The Titanic’s Boozy Baker

Written By: Tracy - Nov• 28•16

So what do you do if you find yourself stuck on an “unsinkable” ship going down in icy waters? You drink. And if you’re lucky, it might save your life.

As strange as it sounds, that’s what happened to the Titanic’s baker, Charles Joughin.

Joughin was off duty on the April 15, 1912 when the titanic struck the ice, but when he heard that people were evacuating the ship, he and his staff brought loaves of bread to provision the life boats, help load women and children into the boats and search out more passengers to fill empty seats. (Sometimes carrying women by force to the boats and throwing them in. Because who would want to get out into a rickety lifeboat in an icy dark ocean in the middle of the night when you could stay on that warm, unsinkable ocean liner?)

And though he was supposed to leave the ship aboard lifeboat 10, Joughin gave up his seat. Afterward, he went back to his cabin to have a stiff drink or six before the ship went down (as you do).

As people began jumping into the water and struggling to swim, Joughin left off his drinking to throw deck chairs over the side in the hopes that some of the swimmers could use them as flotation devices.

By the time the ship slid under the water, Joughin was one of the last passengers who hadn’t jumped (along with Kate and Leo). By his own account, he rode the end of the ship’s stern down into the water like an elevator and stepped into the water without getting his hair wet.

If you squint, you might see him up there.

And while typically being drunk gives you hypothermia faster while only making you think you are warmer, Joughin found his way over to Collapsable lifeboat B two hours later and hung onto the side until another life boat took him on.

Joughin eventually testified before the British Inquiry Board about the sinking, and helped Walter Lord write A Night To Remember.

If you watch almost any Titanic movie you can see Joughin there. He’s in the scene of the ship’s sinking, usually in a baker’s outfit, always either drinking or drunk and clinging to the rail.

If you see him, raise a glass in his honor: the world’s luckiest drunk.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

One Comment

  1. James Burk says:

    And perhaps the most heroic.