While less well known than the sinking of the Titanic, the ten nautical disasters on this list often eclipse the Titanic story in terms of sheer horror, scandal, and loss of life. With human nature itself proving either the salvation or doom of the castaways, here are tales of heroism, cannibalism, endurance, murder, and disappearance without a trace.
The Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge, TN, is the world’s largest Titanic-dedicated museum, boasting a massive replica of the ship that even has the iceberg next to it. They say the exterior is “just the tip of the iceberg,” as the inside looks pretty close to the world-famous luxury ship, including the famous staircase where movie characters Jack and Rose met in the 1997 film.
Violet Constance Jessop (1887 – 1971) has been nicknamed “Miss Unsinkable” because she survived the sinking of the RMS Titanic and its sister ship, the HMHS Britannic. She also survived the collision of the RMS Olympic with the warship, the HMS Hawke.
Located in the Seaport District of Manhattan, the Titanic Memorial Lighthouse has fallen into disrepair and is in desperate need of refurbishment. Friends of the Titanic Lighthouse Restoration have campaigned for over four years for the old monument to be restored to its former glory and that tireless campaigning appears to have finally paid off.
If you are ever in New York City, specifically in the lower financial district at Fulton and Pearl Streets, you are going to see something different than the ordinary sidewalk with cars passing by and people going to and fro. For there stands a 60 foot lighthouse which is a Titanic Memorial erected by public subscription in 1913 and with the support of Molly Brown.
The lighthouse originally stood on the roof of the Seamen’s Church Institute of New York and New Jersey where it looked out on the East River. Between 1913 to 1967, it had a time ball that would signal twelve noon to ships in the harbor. And it was exceedingly accurate since it was connected by telegraphic signal to the Naval Observatory in Washington D.C.
When the Seamen’s Church Institute moved to 15 State Street in 1968, the memorial was donated to the South Street Seaport Museum. It was erected in its current location in May 1976 with funds provided by Exxon Corporation. Since then it has stood there In silent testimony to the tragedy of 1912. And during that time it slowly but surely started looking a bit dingy since nothing was done to keep it spiffy. The South Street Seaport Museum has struggled financially so it could not afford a major refit of the lighthouse.
Stepping up to meet the challenge is a group that decided to help raise funds to renovate the Titanic Memorial Lighthouse. Meanwhile it looks like the South Street Seaport Museum may be getting a huge donation from the Howard Hughe’s development project going up Titanic. It is a marvelous idea this group wants to do and one hopes they will raise the money need to make the memorial stand brightly again.
A Norwegian cruise ship in Alaska (Norwegian Sun) encountered a growler (an iceberg that is mostly underwater) which was filmed by some passengers. It is quite a dramatic moment. The ship was damaged but not severely enough to evacuate.
A video went viral this week after it showed footage of a Norwegian Cruise Line ship that hit an iceberg in Alaska over the weekend. The cruise company cut short the remainder of its scheduled trip due to damage from the collision. In the viral video, a passenger can be heard exclaiming, “Titanic 2.0,” after the ship hit an iceberg that floated to the surface following the impact. Other passengers in the video could be heard gasping at the collision and size of the iceberg floating next to the ship.
The Week has a interesting story about Ruth Blanchard. She was born in India and was on Titanic as they migrated to America.
Lynch says Ruth had an important Indian connection—she was born and raised in India. “The last Titanic survivor to have a really good memory of the ship was someone from India. Ruth was an American, but she grew up in India. She could tell the story of the fateful day from start to finish. She gave us a wonderful account of the sinking,” says Don over phone from Los Angeles.
Neither the Lusitania nor the Titanic was the largest maritime disaster, not by a long shot. Yet somehow, their fateful journeys remain a source of intrigue for both researchers and curiosity seekers. The largest loss of lives occurred during World War II in the frigid Baltic Sea. On Jan. 30, 1945, a Soviet submarine sunk Germany’s Wilhelm Gustloff. On board the transport ship were thousands of German civilians. It is estimated that 6,000 to 9,000 people perished.
Funds are needed to ensure the lifesaving service is able to keep everyone safe and the RNLI is asking people to come down to the Maritime Mile and take part in the wonderful experience and complete their very own mile and donate to help raise those vital funds. RNLI lifeboats in Northern Ireland launched 234 times last year and their volunteer lifeboat crews brought 253 people to safety. Eighty-nine of those launches were carried out in the hours of darkness. The charity’s lifeguards responded to 225 incidents last summer on beaches, helping 285 people and saving the lives of six people.
Members of the British Titanic Society think the wooden carriages, found in a yard in South Wales, formed part of a train that carried passengers from London to Southampton on 10 April 1912. Five days later the Southampton-based liner sank in the North Atlantic Ocean. It is hoped the carriages, which are due to be scrapped, can be restored.
Ismay fully co-operated with the congressional inquiry, but nothing could stop the jeering on the streets in both the US and the UK. London society would have nothing more to do with him and he resigned from all his company positions, hoping to disappear, as the media continued to label him as the biggest coward in history.
With his wife Julia, Ismay was to find comfort in Costello Lodge, however, and among the local people who looked upon the pair as a solid source of employment, although the locals referred to Ismay in Irish as “Brú síos mé” (‘lower me down’ i.e. into a lifeboat ). He was said by the locals to be a kind, warm-hearted man, even inquiring of the fisherman he’d fish with on a Sunday if they had had time to go to Mass. Casla Lodge was burned down by the IRA in 1922, but the home was rebuilt on an even grander scale. Ismay remained a Connemara resident for 25 years before moving back to England after he was diagnosed with diabetes. He died in London in 1937, aged 74.
One of the last great mysteries of the Titanic was solved in 2013 thanks to a DNA test which proved a woman who claimed she was a child survivor of the tragic Titanic sinking was a fraud. Two-year-old Loraine Allison is believed to have been the only child from first or second class who died during the sinking of the Titanic. However, in 1940, Helen Loraine Kramer, now styling herself Loraine Kramer, claimed to be the missing child. She told a radio show that she had been saved at the last moment when her father placed her in a lifeboat with a man whom she had always thought was her father.Kramer launched a legal bid to be considered part of the wealthy Allison family and entitled to part of their fortune. Before her death in 1992, she contended that she was entitled to the vast majority of the Allison family’s wealth in Canada. The dispute led to the founding of The Loraine Allison Identification Project by Tracy Oost, a forensic scientist at Laurentian University, Ontario, and Titanic expert. While Woods declined to participate, Oost obtained DNA samples from Deanne Jennings, Woods’ half-sister, and Sally Kirkelie, the great-niece of Bess Allison, Loraine Allison’s mother. No genetic link was found between descendants from both sides of the dispute. The results proved that Helen Loraine Kramer was not the little girl who was lost on the Titanic.
The campaign to landmark and restore the Titanic Memorial Lighthouse, a monument in New York City built in 1913 to honor those who died aboard the Titanic, continues. Designed by Warren and Wetmore, the architecture firm behind Grand Central Terminal, the 60-foot-tall lighthouse originally sat atop the roof of the Seamen’s Church Institute and featured a working time ball that dropped down the pole each day, along with a green light. Preservationists are now raising funds that would help restore the lighthouse, currently located at the entrance to the South Street Seaport, to its original condition.
Now, Friends of the Titanic Lighthouse Restoration plan to faithfully restore the delipidated lighthouse in just over 18 months. The group hopes to restore the lighthouse’s time ball and green lantern. The time ball would be the only working time ball in the United States, while the lantern would make the Titanic Lighthouse the only working lighthouse in Manhattan. The restoration project would also record the names of the passengers and crew who perished when the Titanic sank in 1912.
Yesterday was the Feast of St. Francis. He gave up a life of wealth and ease to live as a beggar helping to restore the Church. He is the patron saint of merchants, the environment, and animals. To find out more about St. Francis, go to Catholic Online.