Titanic- History of a disaster

Essay by jenhussHigh School, 11th grade July 2005

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On April 14,1912 a great ship called the Titanic sank on its

maiden voyage. That night there were many warnings of icebergs from

other ships. There seems to be a conflict on whether or not the

warnings reached the bridge. We may never know the answer to this

question. The greatest tragedy of all may be that there were not

enough lifeboats for everyone on board. According to Walter Lord,

author of The Night Lives On, the Titanic could have been saved in the

very beginning of the crisis when the iceberg was first reported to

the bridge. If First Officer Murdoch had steamed right at the iceberg

instead of trying to avoid it, he might have saved the ship. The

author feels there would have been a loud crash and anyone within the

first one hundred feet would have been killed, but the ship would have

remained afloat(82).

This view was entirely speculation and we will

never really know if this would have happened. In contrast, Geoffrey

Marcus, author of The Maiden Voyage, suggests that the bridge did not

receive warning of the ice from the very beginning. One of the

messages received was from the Masaba warning the Titanic of a mass of

ice lying straight ahead. According to Marcus, the message never

reached the bridge, but instead was shoved under a paper-weight (126).

At 10:30 p.m. that evening, a ship going the opposite direction of the

Titanic was sighted. This ship, the Rappahannock, had emerged from an

ice field and had sustained damage to its rudder. The vessel signaled

the Titanic about the ice and the Titanic replied that the message was

received (Marcus 127). At 11 p.m. another ice report was received.

This one was from the Californian. This liner had passed through the...