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The story of the Titanic's sinking.

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The Titanic

By: JA



Introduction.................................................Page 3


Construction................................................Page 4-5 


Design..........................................................Page 6-7


Safety Features...........................................Page 8-9


Flaws...........................................................Page 10


Life Onboard...............................................Page 11-12 


Maiden Voyage...........................................Page 13


Stops...........................................................Page 14-15


Sinking...................................................Page 16-22


Aftermath..................................................Page 23-24


Bibliography................................................Page 25

Table of Contents


     Back when there weren’t any airplanes the only way to cross the ocean was on ocean liners.  Out of all of them the Titanic was the biggest of it’s time at over 800 feet long, 175 feet high, 52,000 tons, and with a capacity of over 2,000 people. Three thousand men worked for three years to build this massive ship.  The port where The Titanic set sail, lies two hours southwest of London, England. This is where the Titanic said Bon Voyage to England, Europe and the rest of the world.



The Titanic sailing out from the port.



     The Titanic was a huge and luxurious ship. It was the result of competition between Cunard and White Star Lines. The vessel was designed by Thomas Andrews and the White Star Lines Chairman J. Bruce Ismay. White Star's plans were to create a ship based on size and luxury instead of speed. What they eventually decided was that three vessels would be constructed: the RMS Titanic, Olympic, and Britannic. RMS stood for royal mail ship.


     The Titanic was not only a passenger ship but would also carry mail and cargo. The Titanic's construction started in March 1909 in Belfast, Ireland. A total of 15,000 workers helped build the ship. In the shipyard workers often referred to the Titanic by it's build number: 401.



The Titanic under contruction


     The Titanic had a colossal first class dining room, four elevators and a swimming pool for the first class passengers. The second class accommodations were similar to first class of other ships.  The Titanic was one of the biggest ships of its time at 882 feet long, 175 feet high and with 9 decks. The Titanic had 3 propellers, one center and two side. The rudder was 78 feet tall and 15 feet wide. There were four 62 feet smoke stacks that rose on the top of the ship, three for exhaust and one for looks and ventilation. Onboard were 29 boilers heated by 159 coal burning furnaces.





     The Titanic’s design, that people called “unsinkable”, turned out to be the ship’s fate.The great vessel’s design concept was that the lower half of the ship would be divided into sixteen compartments separated by "watertight" bulkheads. The plan was that even if two or four compartments were breached it would still be buoyant to float. This led many people to believe the Titanic was “unsinkable.”


     The amount of lifeboats exceeded standards at its time with 20 lifeboats holding a total of 1,178 people: 14 standard lifeboats, four collapsibles, and two emergency cutters. The shortage of lifeboats was due to the fact that the amount of lifeboats needed were dependant on how much the ship weighed, or amount of space onboard instead of the number of passengers. The ship’s boat deck could have fit 48 wooden lifeboats. But the ship’s designer wanted the deck to look larger so they only put 16 lifeboats.

Safety Features



     The Titanic had many flaws most of which couldn't be seen from the outside. One major flaw was that water on top of the compartments could move from one to another. Another flaw is that there weren't enough life boats to hold all of the passengers.



     The Titanic was basically a floating town.There was first, second, and third class. All classes had heat and running water. The most expensive rooms were the parlor suites. There were only two, and they were located in the back of the ship on deck B. Today one would cost a whopping $100,000. The Titanic was like floating town.


     Onboard the ship had exercise rooms, a squash court, a heated swimming pool, and a smoking room. It even had two libraries and several upscale restaurants. The ship had its own newspaper called The Atlantic Daily Bulletin. Every morning it was delivered to first class passengers. Also passengers were able to send telegraph messages to and from the ship.

Life Onboard


The parlor suites


     The vessel set sail on April 10th, 1912. At noon three whistles signaled the ship’s departure from Southampton, England for its maiden voyage. Edward J. Smith at age 62 was the ship’s captain. He was also known as “The Millionaire's Captain” because of his popularity among the wealthy passengers.


     While it was departing, seven tug boats were needed to tow the ship from the dock. It nearly hit another boat while being towed. The giant liner’s size caused suction so the docked boat would get in its way. After about an hour of maneuvering the ship was on it’s way.

The Maiden Voyage


     After departing earlier that day the ship arrived in France. Due to the small size of the dock the Titanic’s passengers had to be ferried to and from the ship. Some people got on the ship for the first time while others got off to look. After two hours the Titanic was back on its journey.

Cherbourg, France


During the morning of April 11 the liner made its last stop in Ireland. At 1:30 pm the ship set sail for its final destination New York City. On board were 2,200 people approximately 1,100 were passengers.

Queenstown, Ireland


The ferries, that people traveled in to get onto the Titanic.


     The Titanic sunk and many people died due to decisions made by the crew. During the journey there was a mandatory lifeboat drill that was supposed to always be completed on the first Sunday of every voyage. These drills were to help the passenger’s and/or crew in case of an emergency. But on that day for some unknown reason the captain canceled the drill.


     Throughout much of the voyage radio operators, Jack Phillips and Harold Bride, had been receiving iceberg warnings. Most of the warnings were past along the bridge. On April 13th the ship began to enter an area known to have icebergs. The captain slightly changed the ship’s course to go further south and avoid the icebergs. At 9:40 pm another ship sent a warning of an icefield. The message never reached the bridge.


     At 11:00 pm Phillips was busy sending passenger’s telegrams. a message from a nearby ship, The Californian, came in. The Californian reported that it was surrounded by ice and had stopped for the night, suggesting the Titanic should do the same. Phillips told the Californian’s operator to leave him alone  because he was working. The Californian’s operator turned off his system and went to bed.



The Titanic's wireless room.



     At about 11:40 pm about 400 nautical miles south of Newfoundland, Canada an iceberg was spotted, and the bridge was notified. First, the officer ordered the ship a sharp left and the engines reversed. The ship’s starboard side began to scrape along the iceberg opening at least five “watertight” compartments.


     Andrews determined that the water would spill from one compartment to another eventually causing all the ship’s compartments to fill up, causing the ship’s fate. The captain ordered one of the radio operators to begin sending distress signals. He sent them out over and over again and later he added SOS to his messages. SOS is a code that radio operators can send to call for help. One of these signals, reached the Carpathia at approximately 12:20 am. The ship began heading toward the liner but would take three hours to get there. Other ships responded including the Olympic but were all too far away.





     Many passengers had no idea anything had happened. In fact, some passengers found ice on the deck and began to play with it. Most passengers continued the day normally until stewards told them what had happened. At 12:25 am the captain ordered lifeboats to be launched. The orders were children and women first. The Titanic’s crew was like a messy room, completely unorganized.


     The ship held only 20 lifeboats capable of holding 1,178 people. Which although, was not nearly enough to hold the amount of people on board it exceeded standards.  This along with the fact that the lifeboats were being launched under maximum capacity lead to an extremely low survival rate. The first lifeboat launched, lifeboat number seven, only was holding 27 people although it had a capacity of 65 people.


     By 1:00 am the crew began sending off distress rockets. As the front of the Titanic continued to sink the back rose out of the water putting a lot of pressure in the middle. At around 2:18 am the Titanic snapped in half and by 2:20 am the entire ship disappeared into the Atlantic Ocean. In less than three hours the “unsinkable” ship had sunk.





     The Carpathia finally arrived at the scene at approximately 3:30 am.  Lifeboat number two was the first to reach the ship. At 9:00 am the ship left for New York City. On April 18th it finally arrived to massive crowds. Newspapers rushed to print stories of the disaster.  Although, most of the stories had false information saying everybody onboard survived. Slowly, the public learned the truth of the disaster.



The Carpathia rescuing the Titanic's survivors.


     After so many years people are still interested in the ship. The Titanic’s location had been a mystery for 75 years. Then on September 1, 1985, ocean explorer Dr. Robert Ballard and his team found the ship.  After days of looking at pictures of the ocean’s floor, a piece of the ship came up on the team’s screen.  Alvin, which is a robot, filmed the Titanic.  The video that was sent back was amazing.


     Later, a smaller robot called Jason Jr. went down to the areas off limits to Alvin. Jason Jr. passed a sign that was still visible saying, “Authorized Personnel Only.” Divers later showed that the iceberg did not rip the ship open. Instead, the iceberg opened the Titanic’s seams to approximately the size of a door. Since 1985 many teams have visited the Titanic. A filmmaker named James Cameron has made many dives down to the Titanic. He has a small robot named Gilligan that went through the Titanic. It sent back many pictures including photos of the wireless room.




     In 1987, the US Government gave the rights to only the RMS Titanic Inc. to remove items from the Titanic. There were as many as 6,000 artifacts found. Some people wanted to preserve the items with the Titanic as they were left. It’s been more than 100 years after the ship sank and there is still so much interest in the disaster.

 A pocket watch recovered from the Titanic.