Places Keeping The Legend Alive…
In the annals of travel there have been a number of great tragedies.
- The Hindenburg Disaster
- The air disaster at Tenerife
- The Vegas hotel fire
- The Tsunami at Ao Nang, Thailand
Also on that list are a number of ocean liner disasters.
- The Lusitania
- The Andrea Doria
- The Costa Concordia
- The Blue Star Line’s RMS Titanic
One tragedy seems to be a true legend that stands out from all the rest. The sinking of The White Star Lines RMS Titanic. After more than one hundred years the story still draws our attention. It has been the subject of a half dozen movies and numerous books and our fascination even extends to speculation over just what music the band was playing when the liner slipped below the sea.
There are at least four museums; Belfast and Cobh, in Ireland along with two in Orlando, Florida. In addition to the museums, a popular tour is to a cemetery in Halifax, Nova Scotia where many of the passengers and crew were laid to rest.
The Titanic tragedy remains of interest for a number of reasons. Firstly, it was the maiden voyage of what was promoted as an unsinkable ship. Next it was a disaster that could have been easily avoided, with the loss of life aggravated because she didn’t have enough lifeboats. Additionally, a large number of wealthy and famous people died in the disaster while equally sad a larger number of lower class passengers were prevented from even getting to what lifeboats there were. The Titanic sinking caused a number of nations as well as companies to change policies regarding safety at sea.
Belfast is famous as the shipyard that built the Titanic. At that time the Harland and Wolfe Shipyard was one of the worlds largest employing thousands. Today much of the area of the old shipyard has been turned into a memorial to this one ship and features the drydocks, the slip way, the tender and a museum built to match the giant ocean liner’s height and size.
The Cobh, Ireland connection involves it being the last port before great ship set sail across the Atlantic and into history. Cohb was called Queenstown at that time and was where the last passengers boarded the ship for its intended journey to New York. Of those one hundred and twenty three souls who joined the ship, only forty four survived. Today, the original buildings, streets and piers of a century ago are still standing along the waterfront and includes the original offices of the White Star Line, which today is the Titanic museum.
Just how massive was the RMS Titanic? When she was launched she was the largest ship afloat but times have changed. Todays newer cruise ships can be seven to ten times the tonnage of the Titanic.