Titanic News for Columbus Day 2017

[Due to work and other things, I have not been able to blog regularly. I am taking steps to resume more frequent blogging]

Today is Columbus Day in the United States. It is celebrated to recall a historic exploration that resulted in the discovery of America, totally unknown to the Europeans up to that point (except for a select few vikings who found it too far away to valuable for trading etc). What we celebrate is the courage of those like Columbus who set into the unknown. Charts and maps were not wholly reliable, legends and stories often inspired them. And nor was it easy. You were on a sailing vessel deep into the sea with food supplies that had to be rationed carefully. Scurvy and other diseases caused by lack of proper food made voyages difficult to say the least. The only power was the wind; no turbines to propel you along. And you were totally isolated. There was no way to contact home and not way for them to contact you. Voyages like this could take many long months or years. The desire to explore what was out there beyond the known is something to celebrate. it took guts and a whole lot of faith when times got tough. The age of discovery that was to come would fill out our knowledge of the world and its continents. Celebrating this spirit of discovery does not mean you embrace or like what happened to many native peoples that came later. Nor do you not honor Native Americans who arguably immigrated here from Asia long before. You honor the spirit of exploration and discovery that led to many wonderful things being found about our world.

Now for Titanic News:
1)Nephew Recounts Uncle’s Experience On The Titanic (The Post-Journal, 9 Oct 2017)
Recently, guest speakers Bob Sutehall of Angola and Lorraine Cole of Fredonia presented a program marking the 105th year since the sinking of the Titanic. As people listened to the true story of Sutehall’s uncle, Henry Sutehall Jr, who boarded the ship April 10, 1912, the spirit of the RMS Titanic was in the room. While everyone envisioned this massive luxury ship, Cole appeared wearing era clothing and re-enacting the character Caroline Wick Bonnell, who was an actual passenger aboard the Titanic, and a survivor. In character, Cole acted out a scenario of that tragic night.

2)’Quite a story’: 2 Victory residents survived Titanic voyage(auburnpub.com,9 Oct 2017)
Many people don’t realize the town of Victory, and several other Cayuga County communities, have ties to the tragic 1912 sinking of the RSM Titanic. Two Victory residents, Helga and her two-year-old daughter Hildur Hirvonen, were on board the historic ship, traveling from Finland to join husband and father Eric Hirvonen in the United States, when it hit an iceberg and began to take on water over. The mother and daughter were rescued from the ship in a lifeboat. “The father was already here or he probably wouldn’t have made it because women and children were first,” Victory historian Beverly Sayles said. “It wasn’t like every man for himself the way many times it is today. It was women and children first, they had a chivalry order.”

Canfranc International Railway Station/Alberto Pascual/Wikimedia Commons

3)Though not really a Titanic story, this is about a railroad station that has called Titanic of the Mountains.  The Canfranc International Railway Station between Spain and France was once a major hub between Span and France but of course played an important role for the Nazis during World War II. It fell into decay and was abandoned in the 1970’s as a railway station. Yet many tourists came to see this once great rail station. Now comes word that it will be restored reports the Daily Mail.


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