History of the Titanic

Wreck of Titanic underwater

Almost everyone has heard about the Titanic in some form or the other. People have acted out some of the scenes that led to the disaster, commemorated their loved ones in song and written about the tragedy, but how much do you know about this incident that has shaped many a life? Here’s what you need to know about this unfortunate happening:


The Titanic ship goes by a myriad of titles, among them The Millionaire’s Special, the RMS Titanic, and the Royal Mail Ship Titanic. Any of the above names point to this ship.


Onboard, the ship had 2,200 people in total, with 1,300 of these accounting for the passengers. In it, there were many famous people, including but not limited to Benjamin Guggenheim, who was an American businessman, William Thomas Stead who worked as a British journalist and Isidor Straus who partly owned Macy’s. Isidor’s wife was also onboard, alongside Andrews and Ismay, who had crafted the ideas for the liner.

When was it built?

Towards the beginning of the twentieth century, shipbuilding was a big deal as investors in the trade raked in lots of revenue. The passenger trade along the transatlantic path was a viable investment option as tons of companies lined up in a bid to transport immigrants and wealthy travelers over the sea. The most notable participants in the trade were the Cunard and the White Star.

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Building the Titanic

Building of the Titanic

Did you know that the Titanic was the most massive moving object in history? Its substantial size is enough to make one wonder how it was possible to build such a large liner. Combine that with the fateful tragedy that occurred during its maiden voyage and curiosity peaks as to what could be behind this misfortune. Let’s explore the construction of this famous liner and what could have led to the tragedy:


The making of the ship began back in 1909, and it commenced towards the end of March. James Andrews was the designer behind the project, and he laid the first keel in Ireland. The construction of the liner took place hand in hand with that of its sister ship, known as the Olympic. The building of the latter began a good three months before the Titanic, and during the installation of the two, more than fifteen thousand workers played a role here and there. So large and dangerous was the task ahead that it led to the loss of eight lives during the construction phase. That’s how tremendous the job was. Interestingly, at the time, there was an expectation that for every one hundred thousand pounds spent on a vessel, there would be one death. The Titanic cost one point five million pounds and was thus short of the number of expected fatalities during construction.

The considerable work in play also owed to the fact that no facilities existed at the time to enable the making of such a large vessel and the team thus had to make do with what they had.

They started by demolishing small slipways in the area to create space for two new ones. Additionally, they built two big gantries with lifts and moving cranes and bought a 200-ton floating crane. The latter came in handy in moving big boilers and other massive items into the ship where they could get positioned as per the design. The structures of the sister ships were so significant that people in Belfast could see them from afar, as well as the gantries in which they lay. Let’s take a look at each of the construction aspects of this vessel.

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Things to do on the Titanic

Inside view of Titanic

The Titanic was for people who enjoyed comfort while at sea, and as a result, it featured lots of activities which the passengers could enjoy as they waited to dock at their destinations. For those in the first class compartments, there was a swimming pool, Turkish baths, a gymnasium, and a racquet court. The company also provided facilities for the less energetic passengers in the form of an orchestra. They could thus listen to the background music as they watched the rolling waves or take part in the various performances throughout the day.

For those who enjoyed games, there were tons of options at the deck, including shuffleboard and ring toss, as well as a myriad of board games such as chess and backgammon. People in the second class compartments were also privy to the latter games. Those traveling in third class were short of formal activities. However, they could always meet in the deck and play various casino games as they tested their luck. Let’s take a look at the different activities and how they impacted the voyage:


While traveling onboard the Titanic, there was no reason for people to lag on their fitness goals as the passengers had access to a gym. It featured cycling machines, an electric horse, an electric camel, and a rowing machine. Access to the facilities set the travelers back a shilling for each session, and the tickets were available from the purser. As people enjoyed the machines, they received the aid of a physical educator who ensured that they did not come to harm while in the gym.

Women would enjoy the machines from nine in the morning until noon before the children came in at one till three in the afternoon. After that, the men would take over and enjoy the facilities until six in the evening. There was thus adequate time for everyone to get their workout in and burn off the calories from the fine dining.

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The Crash

Titanic sinking

The sinking of the Titanic was an unexpected tragedy that shook the world to its core. What was once a magnificent ship lay at the bottom of the ocean, and all people wanted to do was understand how it all happened. To date, there are many unsolved theories as to what could have changed the course of the crash as people delve deeper into the accident. Here, we will cover the events leading to the crash and what measures were in place to help mitigate the risks:

The ship sank in the early morning on 15th April 1912, four days after it had left Southampton, heading to New York City. The accident took place in the North Atlantic Ocean as the ship ferried 2,224 people across the sea. According to the reports given, the vessel hit an iceberg twenty minutes to midnight on 14th April and took two hours and forty minutes to sink, leading to the death of 1500 people. So high was the number of fatalities that this incident is one of the most disastrous tragedies at sea throughout history.

Iceberg Reports

Reports show that before hitting the iceberg, the operators on the ship had received six warnings as to the presence of icebergs. Passengers on the vessel had also spotted the drifting ice in the afternoon as the conditions in the sea at the time were at their worst. The lookouts were unaware of how bad the situation was, and the calmness of the sea did not help much as they could not tell where the icebergs were. What’s more, they were not using binoculars on that fateful day as they were missing and they thus relied on information from the operators and their bare eyes. With all this happening, it was, therefore, necessary for the crew to take caution when dealing with the communications, but the operators did not relay all that they heard over the radio. The operators at the time were not part of the crew, and their primary role was to convey messages to the passengers such that when a warning came in as to the state of the icebergs, one of the operators scolded the sender. The crew was aware of the presence of icebergs. However, the captain maintained a near maximum speed such that when the lookouts finally spotted the iceberg, it was too late to turn around immediately and during the rotation, the starboard side got hit.

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The Goodwins and five of their six children

The sinking of the Titanic was a disaster that saw more than 1500 people lose their lives in what was the biggest maritime tragedy of its time. More than 2,200 people had embarked on a journey to New York City before the ship sank after hitting an iceberg. Of the lost lives, more than eight hundred were passengers, traveling in the different classes.

The classes were not only based on the cost of the ticket but also one’s social status. The first class included wealthy passengers, among them politicians, upper-class members, industrialists, socialites, athletes, entertainers and other people with means. Second class passengers included tourists, professors, clergymen, and authors while the third class comprised mainly of emigrants looking to start a new life in Canada and the United States. Let’s take a look at some of the people onboard the ship on that fateful day it sunk:

The passengers onboard the ship were 1,317. Of these, 324 were in the first class, another 285 were in the second class, and 708 were in the third class. There were 112 children, 434 females and 1,680 males on the ship. The ship had the capacity for 2,453 passengers and was thus well under capacity on the maiden voyage.

Let’s take a quick look at some of the people on board:

Noel Leslie, Countess of Rothes

The countess quickly rose to the status of heroine after helping in the commanding of her lifeboat with the help of Thomas William Jones. She took charge of the boat’s tiller and rowed it away from the liner as it sank. She also helped in steering the boat towards the rescue ship while encouraging the survivors with optimism and decisiveness, which had lacked in the liner before it went down.

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