It's my guess that instances of such cargoes were quite possibly commonplace in the political climate of the day. By the very nature of such cargoes they would have been shrouded in secrecy, diplomacy and deceit.
The world is full of trickery; and very little has changed.
On the other hand, the cargo might just have been precisely as described in the manifest.
Further as to the significance or insignificance of the cracks which occurred at 0630 on 27th December, the pumps became disabled at 0100 on 29th December yet the vessel remained afloat, without pumping, for a further twelve days until 1600 on 10th January. The Report makes it clear that the cracks were not a direct cause of the loss. "After the vessel was hove to with the sea about four points on the starboard bow, it apparently did not labor to an extent which would aggravate or increase the fractures." A heading with the sea about four points on the starboard bow suggests a heading somewhere south of west, at low speed. Thus, standing out to sea remained a realistic option, particularly if better weather could be found to the south, with the passage continued in a south-westerly direction. After 0100 on 29th December (and probably before then), however, all options of proceeding to Cork or anywhere else under her own steam were lost through further stress of weather.
Last edited by Barrie Youde; 15th March 2017 at 10:01..