Wednesday, June 2, 2010


After debating the matter for a while, I finally decided that my first topic to write about (on the actual history) could only be one thing: why the Titanic was called unsinkable.

The White Star Line didn’t advertise it themselves that the Titanic was unsinkable, though it’s obvious that they supported the idea.

"There is no danger that Titanic will sink. The boat is unsinkable and nothing but inconvenience will be suffered by the passengers."
-Phillip Franklin, White Star Line Vice President

"I cannot imagine any condition which would cause a ship to founder. I cannot conceive of any vital disaster happening to this vessel. Modern ship building has gone beyond that."
-Captain Smith, Commander of the Titanic

Ship Builders magazine stated that the Titanic was practically unsinkable because of the unique construction of the sixteen watertight compartments. If the ship began to take on any water, the bulkhead doors could be closed from the bridge or in the engine room (where they were located) and up to four of the compartments could be filled with water and they would be able to stay afloat. Also, the Titanic had a double bottom so that if anything was to scrape it from below, it would have to rip through two layers of thick steel. They said she was a lifeboat within herself. Some went as far as saying not even God could sink her.

Not everyone agreed to the fact that the Titanic was being called unsinkable; well they were testing God.

"My mother had a premonition from the very word 'GO.' She knew there was something to be afraid of and the only thing that she felt strongly about was that to say a ship was unsinkable was flying in the face of God. Those were her words."
-Eva Hart, Titanic Survivor

Even if people really did believe that the Titanic couldn’t sink, we now know that there were many problems with the design of certain things such as the watertight compartments (a subject that I will address in another post).

I imagine, as a little time went on, and more word-of-mouth publicity spread, people left off the “practically” when they talked about how safe the ship was. They were lulled into a false sense of security. After all, if you were going to cross the Atlantic ocean, wouldn’t you want to believe you were safe from any possible dangers?