Saturday, 2 May 2015


The Sydney Morning Herald, Friday 10 December, 1909
'The story was also greatly discounted by astatement by Messrs. Gilchrist, Watt, andSanderson, the agents at Sydney, who reportedthat Mr. Sawyer booked his passage to Durbanonly, and not to Capetown.'
This is a very interesting report claiming that Claude Sawyer booked through to Durban, where he intended to disembark (and attend to business at that Port). This sheds new light on Sawyer's conviction the Waratah was doomed and that he was prepared to sacrifice the balance of his ticket to Cape Town.
One wonders where the truth lies? If this article is accurate, it suggests that Sawyer exaggerated his fears. After all, if Sawyer had had genuine reservations about the safety of the Waratah he could have disembarked at Port Melbourne, Port Adelaide, after the Waratah departed Sydney. He need not have subjected himself to the trans-Indian Ocean crossing to Durban.
But the Waratah did founder along the Wild Coast and Sawyer will forever be remembered as the psychic who foresaw the disaster.  

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