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New information about the sinking of the Titanic?

Here's your spot to post and discuss history-related news items.

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Divia
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Post by Divia » Thu September 23rd, 2010, 1:51 am

Do we believe this. hmmm.

I dont know much about boats but I would like to know if turning starboard is the same in whatever that author was talking about.
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annis
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Post by annis » Thu September 23rd, 2010, 2:09 am

I actually heard an interview on the radio this morning with Louise Patten, the granddaughter of the only senior officer to survive the wreck, Charles Lightoller, who passed his secret on to his wife .She passed it on to her grand-daughter not long before she died. It sounds quite credible to me, and also the officer's rather misguided sense of duty which prevented him from discussing the mistake in case his employers, the White Star company, were bankrupted by the disclosure.

There were two issues. First, the steering systems for sailing ships and steam ships were for some obscure reason completely opposite to each other, so it stands to reason that a steersman under pressure might revert to the system he was most familiar with, unfortunately achieving the wrong result. Secondly, the chairman of the White Star line, who was on board, bullied the captain into continuing to sail, even after the ship struck the iceberg. This may have been due to a conviction that the ship was unsinkable, or a determination to make the promised deadline for arrival in the States.
Last edited by annis on Thu September 23rd, 2010, 4:10 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Vanessa
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Post by Vanessa » Thu September 23rd, 2010, 9:07 am

That's interesting. Seems credible to me, too. There was also talk at one time that it wasn't an iceberg at all, but a fire. Somebody (I can't remember who but obviously someone quite high up in the workings of it) wouldn't get on the boat because they knew there was a problem with it. Probably just rumours.
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Miss Moppet
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Post by Miss Moppet » Thu September 23rd, 2010, 11:10 pm

I think it does sound credible but I'd want to check that none of the other survivors could possibly have known about it (other than Ismay of course). But then they may have kept silent for similar reasons.

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LoveHistory
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Post by LoveHistory » Fri September 24th, 2010, 1:41 am

This much later it hardly matters, but that explanation makes sense to me.

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Post by annis » Fri September 24th, 2010, 2:19 am

Posted by Miss Moppet
I think it does sound credible but I'd want to check that none of the other survivors could possibly have known about it (other than Ismay of course)
Problem is, I guess, that Lightoller was the only senior officer to survive, so probably the only one left who would have had access to all the details, and by the time the grand-daughter was told the story there would have been few survivors of any sort still living.

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Kveto from Prague
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Post by Kveto from Prague » Fri September 24th, 2010, 8:39 am

it seems to me kind of pointless publicity for her book. trying to blame the poor steersman for the mistake doesnt change the fact that there werent enough lifeboats and the ship suffered from poor design.

blaming Ismay does make a difference. it just makes him more guilty than he already was.

I dont know what the writer is trying to acheive. to me, her grandfather was already untrustworthy as an officer who survived when so many women and children died. to reveal that he lied in order to cover up for his rotten bosses reveals an even lower character. he could have come clean and maybe those responsible could have been punished (hopefully the guilt Ismay and company should have felt would be punishment enough. but Im afraid it wasn't. That Ismay insisted on not allowing anyone to mention the Titanic in his presence strikes me more as the act of a petulant child)

the titanic was a whole range of "would have, should have, could have" errors. these revelations really dont add anything special.

funnz that we are still interested in the titanic after so long. other naval disasters had larger reprecussions (like the lusitania) but this is the one that sticks in the public's conciousness.

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LoveHistory
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Post by LoveHistory » Fri September 24th, 2010, 4:14 pm

Keny, you make good points, but had he come forward the higher ups would have discredited him in short order. After White Star had done with him no one would have believed him, and his reputation might well have been ruined. That would have made a difference in whether or not he could support his family. Many people cannot handle the idea of a clear conscience but no money.

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Kveto from Prague
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Post by Kveto from Prague » Fri September 24th, 2010, 6:25 pm

[quote=""LoveHistory""]Keny, you make good points, but had he come forward the higher ups would have discredited him in short order. After White Star had done with him no one would have believed him, and his reputation might well have been ruined. That would have made a difference in whether or not he could support his family. Many people cannot handle the idea of a clear conscience but no money.[/quote]

All very true. however, you never know, maybe he could have acomplished something as a whistleblower.

Maybe Im just being overly chivalrous, but I think any male who survived when so many women and children perished has a lot to answer for.

I think i read that a year or two ago the last titanic suvivor, a baby at the time, had passed away.

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