Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Today is the 97th Anniversary of the Titanic's last day. According to my clock now, it's around 9:00 P.M. By now, some passengers would have retired to bed while the men in 1st class would have gone to the smoking room playing cards, smoking, drinking brandy, and talking about politics. In 2nd class, men would have been doing the same or in their cabins. Lawrence Beasely was reading in his cabin. In 3rd class, there would have been some dancing, music, and men would have played cards while smoking. The women probably would have sat on the benches talking while the children were dancing and playing. There is one account that says that a mouse ran across the floor which caused the women to scream and stand on the benches while the boys tried to catch it. At 11:40 P.M., Fredrick Fleet (a survivor) spotted an iceberg directly in the Titanic's path. He rang the bell and called the bridge. 6th officer James Moody (who perished) answered the phone and relayed the report to 1st officer Murdoch (who also perished), in charge of the bridge during that time. The ship tried to swing towards port and just as it looked like Titanic would clear it, it struck putting holes in the 6 compartments when it could only take damage to 4 compartments. This meant that the weight of the water would drag the Titanic down, spilling into the next compartment. After they realized the ship was doomed, they ordered the boats swung out. All the boats except for two were lowered. The two collapsibles on top of the officer's quarters. The water swept up as the boats came crashing down on the deck. Collapsible B was overturned and A was swamped. These two boats would save around 25-30. Soon after, the 1st funnel fell on men including the richest man on the ship, John Jacob Astor. After that, the heart of the ship, the Grand Staircase flooded. This was at 2:10 A.M. The 2nd funnel disappears underwater later to fall. The stern rose up, and then the lights went out, flickered, and went out for all eternity. The stern detached between the 3rd and 4th funnel and fell back almost even. The bow still a little attached to the stern, pulled the stern under. The stern was almost perpendicular like a finger pointing to heaven. Then, the stern very slowly disappeared from sight at 2:20 A.M. leaving 1,500 people in pitched dark and in the icy 28 degree waters. 705 people were in the lifeboats listening to the horrific cries as people died and only one came back 20 minutes later to save only 4 people.