Seven Additional Survivors of Viking Disaster Rescued After Two Days’ Exposure

Sagona Finds Three Men on Floating Wreckage and Beothic Picks Up Dory Containing Three Others

Operator King, Navigator Kennedy and Sargent, an American, Drifted for Twelve Miles from Scene of Viking Disaster – Men Found by Beothic are: W.G. Johnson, Master Watch; Alfred Kean, Second Hand, and Fred Best, Assistant of Talking Picture Party – Richard King Reaches Island.

Three Survivors In Dory

            At 10:15 this morning the Minister of Fisheries received a message from Capt. Carter of the S.S Beothic, via Fogo, stating three survivors; namely: W.G. Johnston, Master Watch; Alfred Kane, Second Hand, and Frederick Best, Movie Helper, were rescued from a dory.  All three are suffering from slight injuries but condition otherwise good.  Mr. Clyde Lake presumes with the rescue of the above men, this cleans up the dory situation.

Messages Suppressed

            At eleven o’clock the Government gave notice that press messages to and from Horse Islands and the ships have been suppressed.  The rescue ship Sagona up to the hour of writing had not reached Horse Islands with the doctors, nurses ad medical supplies.  The ship has been held up owing to ice conditions, while the tug Foundation Franklin is in the ice well off shore.  It is gratifying to be able to state at this time, that so far not one death has occurred among the survivors on Horse Islands.

Seven Men Reported Safe

With Richard King who managed to reach Horse Island, and the three men, Harry Sargent, one of the Americans, Navigator Kennedy, and Wireless Operator C. King who were rescued on floating wreckage by the Sagona, the total accounted for since The Telegram Special was published yesterday is seven.  The sealing ships that have reached the vicinity are scouring the sea in the hope of finding other victims while the Sagona is trying to force a way to the survivors on Horse Islands with supplies, of which they are in desperate need.

Three Miles Away On Wreckage Of Viking 

            S.S. Sagona, March 17 (5:15 p.m.) – Picked up three men adrift on a part of the ship’s stern, position 15 miles E.S.E. Cape John Gull Island.  Men rescued were:  Wireless operator King, navigator Kennedy, and an American named Sargent.

                                                                                                            (Sgd.) Kean.


Minister Marine & Fisheries,

St. John’s

            S.S. Sagona, March 17 (10:53 p.m.) – Present condition of Kennedy, burnt about the face, scalp wounds, not serious.  Sargent has eye affected but not in serious condition, best of three.  King has simple fracture of left leg, both feet frozen, shocked, doing well, will advise tomorrow.  Captain most fortunate in locating the three men as they were 22 miles from the scene of the accident.  Captain says no chance of reaching Horse Island tonight as ice tight and heavy swell.  Anxious to know casualties at Horse Island so we may take necessary supplies ashore.

Searching In Darkness

            S.S. Eagle to Bowring Brothers—Passed wreckage 12 miles north-northeast Cape John, Gull Island.  Still searching in darkness.  Proceeding toward where Beothic rescued three men.  Will search that area at daybreak.

Supplies For Residents

            To Operator, Horse Islands, March 17 – Sagona has supplies on board for residents of Horse Island, who will get same by applying to purser, to reimburse them for provisions supplied to crew of Viking.  Steamer Ungava expected to reach Horse Island at Four-thirty this afternoon.  Foundation Franklin also at four-thirty.  Sagona about p.m.  Eagle and Neptune on way

Minister Marine, Fisheries.

Thanked For Information

            To Dr. Moores, S.S. Sagona, via Fogo – Thanks for detailed information.  We have no definite information as to condition of men on Island except that captain is seriously injured.  As there has been no death among the 121 men now on Island I presume that their injuries are more or less minor.  I have an idea that there are about ten seriously injured men with legs and arms broken still on ice, five to ten miles east by south from Horse Islands.  You will of course be in touch with other steamers in that vicinity as Beothic sent dory for three men at five o’clock this afternoon.


Foundation Franklin Searching
10:34 p.m. – Off scene and in ice. Searching around until daylight.
Master, Foundation Franklin

From The Prime Minister

            To All Newfoundland Telegraph Offices as Public Despatch – 17 March – Horse Island station did not function after nine o’clock last night owing to atmospheric interruptions.  First news of Viking disaster today received at seven this morning stated one hundred and eighteen survivors and landed on Horse Island.  Since then two more have arrived.  Estimated twenty five dead.  Steamers Foundation Franklin, Ungava, Beothic due to scene of disaster four o’clock this afternoon Sagona due six o’clock.  Eagle and Neptune due seven o’clock.  Foundation Franklin and Sagona have full equipment – doctors, nurses, medical supplies, food and clothing and will rush injured men to St. John’s, where full hospital and other arrangements made for accommodation of all survivors of disaster.

Ice Barrier Prevents Ships Reaching Island

            Up to noon hour today no relief has reached the people on Horse Island, the ships being prevented from getting to land by ice barriers.  According to a message from operator Bartlett received at 10 o’clock this morning, Capt. Kean of the ill-fated Viking is very ill.  Medical supplies and food were badly needed and the women of the place were exhausted attending the sick.

Check-up Shows 88 Unaccounted For          

            Of the list of the crew published elsewhere, P. Oliver sailed in place of Edward Dalton; John Ryan of Logy Bay did not sail.  It will be noticed that a star marked by the names of certain men of whom there was doubt as to whether they had sailed.  Many of these however are shown to be among the survivors.  It is still unknown if Jas. White, Greenspond, Israel Foley, Bonavista, and Robt. Bartlett, Marysville, sailed or not.   Enquiries are being made.

            In an unofficial check-up the following appear to be the missing or men who signed and did not sail:

            Varick Frissell, New York
            A.E. Penrod, New York
            E. Cronin (stowaway) St. John’s
            David Winter, master-watch, Valleyfield
            J. Wheeler, master-watch, Lower Island Cove
            William Goodwin, cook, Torbay
            Charles Fry, cook, Brigus
            Israel Foley, Bonavista
            Geo. Cross, Badgers Quay
            Albin Oakley, Wesleyville
            James Linthorne, Brigus
            John Austin, Brownsdale
            Malcolm Webber, Cupids
            John Breaker, Brigus
            Joseph Kelly, Brigus
            Charles McGrath, Colliers
            Joseph Kennedy, Gull Island
            Joseph Stockley, Brookfield
            Zach Thistle, Pouch Cove
            Patrick Bartlett, Brigus
            Henry Sparkes, Brigus
            Geo. Spracklin, Brigus
            Stephen Mullett, Wesleyville
            John Roche, St. John’s
            Roland Carter, St. John’s
            Joseph Murphy, St. John’s
            Fred Carnell, St. John’s
            H. Hansford, St. John’s
            John Burke, St. John’s
            Harold Wiseman, St. John’s
            Anthony Taylor

The Evening Telegram, March 18, 1931

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