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TITANIC - Myths, Mysteries & Theories DEBUNKED

TITANIC - Unraveling the Truth: Debunking Myths, Exploring Mysteries, and Dispelling Theories

By Kaushan De SilvaPublished 5 months ago 4 min read
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On the fateful day of April 10, 1912, the RMS Titanic embarked on its maiden voyage, commencing a journey from Southampton to New York that would go down in history. Little did the passengers and crew know that this luxurious ocean liner would soon be engulfed in one of the most infamous maritime disasters of all time.

Fast forward to the night of April 14, 1912, when the Titanic struck an iceberg in the frigid waters of the Atlantic Ocean. In a mere two and a half hours, the grandeur of the Titanic succumbed to the icy depths, taking with it over 1,500 lives. Since that tragic day, a shroud of legend and mystery has enveloped the sinking, giving rise to numerous questions and theories.

In this installment of Debunked, our mission is to unravel the truths from the myths surrounding the Titanic. The often-misunderstood claim that the Titanic was deemed "unsinkable" is a focal point. While the White Star Line, the company that owned the Titanic, primarily marketed the ship based on its opulence rather than indestructibility, a 1910 brochure did state that the vessel was designed to be "unsinkable." However, it's essential to note that the widely circulated boast of unsinkability gained prominence only after the iceberg collision.

Moving on to a curious tale about Catholic workers in the Titanic's shipyard refusing to labor due to a hull number spelling "NO POPE," we find the claim unsubstantiated. The hull number in question, 390904, was never assigned to the Titanic. Furthermore, the narrative of an unbroken champagne bottle during the ship's christening is dispelled. Titanic deviated from the maritime tradition of breaking a champagne bottle, preserving all 12,000 wine bottles for the enjoyment of its passengers.

The ship's alleged cargo of an Egyptian mummy, believed to bring a curse, is another myth debunked. Records indicate no such mummy on board, and the genesis of this story lies in a journalist's invention about a drowned passenger's belief in a mummy curse. Similarly, we address the misconception surrounding the number of lifeboats, clarifying that Titanic exceeded legal requirements. Tragically, the lifeboats were not utilized to their full capacity, contributing significantly to the high casualty count.

A prevailing belief that third-class passengers were locked below decks while the ship sank is also explored. While lockable gates existed for U.S. immigration control, they were opened when the evacuation order was given. The stark class disparity in survival rates can be attributed to the considerable distance third-class passengers had to cover to reach the limited lifeboats.

Shifting focus to the notion that Captain Smith aimed to set a speed record, we dispel this theory. Titanic's speed was not record-breaking, and the chosen longer route aimed to avoid potentially dangerous northern ice. Allegations of ignoring iceberg warnings find their roots in American newspapers seeking revenge on J. Bruce Ismay, a figure associated with the White Star Line.

Addressing claims of Captain Smith being drunk during the iceberg collision, we set the record straight. Smith was in his cabin, getting his usual night's rest, leaving First Officer Murdoch in command during the crucial moments. Confusion over steering orders arose due to locked binoculars and miscommunication between officers and helmsmen.

Now, let's delve into a particularly intriguing theory suggesting that the Titanic never sank. Instead, proponents of this theory argue that the Titanic's sister ship, the RMS Olympic, was switched in a calculated insurance scam. Proposed by theorist Robin Gardiner in 1998, this theory contends that the Olympic, damaged in a collision with a Royal Navy warship in 1911, was secretly substituted for the Titanic. The insurance payout from the Titanic sinking would then fund the repairs for the Olympic. However, careful examination of financial evidence and the shipwreck's markings dismantles this theory.

Concluding our journey through Titanic myths, we touch upon allegations involving J.P. Morgan and the Federal Reserve or the Rothschilds orchestrating the disaster. Lacking substantial evidence, these claims remain speculative and fail to withstand scrutiny.

In essence, the Titanic's narrative is a tragic tale of a maritime disaster, devoid of intricate conspiracies or foul play. The intricate web of myths and misconceptions surrounding the Titanic serves as a testament to the enduring fascination with this historic event. As we separate fact from fiction, the true legacy of the Titanic lies in its profound impact on maritime safety and the lessons learned from the tragedy that continue to resonate today.

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