Via The Guardian.

The captain of the Titanic had more than icebergs to contend with on the ill-fated voyage that ended 104 years ago on Friday, a document has revealed.

A report was handed to Capt Edward Smith before the ship left Southampton for its maiden voyage to New York on 10 April 1912, warning him of the presence of a mast of a submerged wreck in the Atlantic.

The scrunched-up piece of paper was handed back to the messenger as it was not on the ship when it sank after hitting an iceberg, resulting in the deaths of more than 1,500 people.

The note ended up in the offices of the solicitors hired to represent White Star Line, the company that owned the Titanic, for the multiple cases for compensation…

“The obstruction wasn’t an iceberg but the mast of a wreck that had been reported by the Rotterdam, a Dutch liner that had travelled from New York. The obstacle would have done some serious damage and ripped a hole in the hull of Titanic had it gone straight over it.

As an aside, one cartoonist presents what would happen if the Titanic sank today. Yep, I think so…



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4 Comments | Leave a comment
  1. midget says:

    The Titanic has held such a fascination despite three years later
    the Luisitania sunk with more people & started WW1 besides, but nobody seems to care about that.The survivors did see the iceberg but perhaps a second cause
    was there as well.
    Thomas Hardy, the author, wrote a marvelous poem called “The Convergence
    of the Twain”, showing the “marriage” of the iceberg & the ill fated ship.
    It is profound.I’m a Titanic nut from way back.

    • TigerAim says:

      Hey Midget! I am, too! I always remind people of it near and on the anniversary. When I was growing up, it seemed like there were more specials on TV about it in April, but I guess it’s been years since the wreckage was found and years since the blockbuster movie came out; feels like there is little coverage anymore. But, considering how long it’s been, it may be surprising there are still any stories about it around the anniversary now. I was thinking about the Lusitania this week, too, and the fact that it happened a few short years afterward, but if I recall correctly, it was sort of a case of everyone behaving badly. I think the Lusitania’s operators didn’t believe the threats that Germany would destroy any ship believed to be carrying war materials or such and/or they thought the presence of so many civilians on the liner would prevent it. But then, Germany didn’t care about the civilians and decided to show they meant business, so they torpedoed it. Very sad for the people aboard.
      I’ll have to look up “The Convergence of the Twain” now; thanks Midget!

      • midget says:

        Tiger- There is a building in my hometown where an English gent worked.
        He went back to England for his fathers funeral and because of the coal strike,he had to buy a ticket on the Titanic.His body was found but he was buried at sea.I always think of him when I pass that building.
        He was second class passenger Reginald Hale. I think its great that people like you remember the loss because it was so preventable like the Challenger etc.As Tammy says: “you can’t take life for granted”.

        • TigerAim says:

          So true Midget! Thank you for sharing the story of Mr. Hale – very sad but it is helpful to be able to humanize what happened, rather than just hearing the large number of how many perished.

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