Monday, 24 April 1961
Dear Mr. Carvalho,
I have to thank you for your very kind letter of the 14th . Also for the two very nice photos of the beautiful models you made of the 'Titanic'. Considering you are not a sailor I think you must possess great patience and skill. Personally I have never made a model, simply because I have not the patience. I am now a very old man of 77 , and most of my time reading and dozing off to sleep. I also have a very large garden but not being a gardener I just cannot concentrate, therefore I am lazy where a garden is concerned. I suppose you know that only 4 of the Titanic's officers survived? But only 2 of us are alive-Herbert James Pitman who was 3rd officer. I was 4th officer, being the only one of four who was on duty at the time of the crash. Well, on 18th March I was very surprised in the forenoon by a visit quite unexpected by Pitman, he with his nephew and wife had come to Bournemouth for the weekend and my wife and I were invited to luncheon with them the next day. Pitman is a widower and lives at 'The Red House', Pitcombe, Bruton. Somerset. England.
Now I must tell that when I was 10 or 11 years old my father took us to Boston in S/S Alecto of which he was master. He docked at Mystic Dock Chelsea and whilst I stayed with English friends in Orange Street Chelsea , I will remember setting off fireworks in the street lined with trees then on the 4th of July. I have been to Boston many times since in White Star ships, just calling to land the mail and passengers then proceed to New York . So I never had a chance to go ashore. If I come across a photo of Pitman taken in the last few years I will send it, but so far I have failed in my search. John Oldham is writing the 'Ismay Line' but I don't know whether it has gone to the publishers yet.
I must close again with many thanks and kind regards.
Yours sincerely, Joseph Groves Boxhall