A C.Q.D. Medal in Silver, as awarded to the crews of the White Star steamship Republic, the S.S. Florida and S.S. Baltic in saving the lives of the passengers of the stricken Republic in the Atlantic on 21st January 1909, this being the first time that a Marconi Operator had sent a distress signal using the CQD radio signal.
C.Q.D. Medal in Silver, complete with original ribbon, and mounted for wear swing style as worn on original ribbon.
Condition: Good Very Fine.
This medal takes its curious name from the CQD signal (All Stations Distress) sent out by the stricken White Star steamship Republic after it collided with the Italian steamer Florida on 21st January 1909. The liner Baltic responded to the call. The Republic was the more seriously damaged vessel, but all of her passengers and crew were transferred, first to the Florida and then to the Baltic before she sank. The saloon passengers of the Baltic and the Republic subscribed to a fund to provide medals to the crews of all three ships in saving more than 1700 lives. Four silver-gilt examples were presented to the Captains of the three ships involved and to Jack Binns, the Marconi operator aboard the Republic who sent the CQD radio signal. Silver medals with ring suspenders were presented to the officers and crews. Binns became a hero when the survivors reached New York and was given a welcome parade. This was the first time that radio was used to effect a rescue at sea and indirectly sealed the fate of the Titanic three years later, as the White Star wrongly assumed that any larger liner would take several hours to sink and radio would obtain help quickly within well used shipping lanes and life boats would only be required to effect the transfer of passengers and crew. As a result the number of lifeboats on the Titanic was severely reduced. Coincidentally Jack Binns was offered the post of wireless officer on board the new Titanic but declined.