Wednesday, July 31, 2013

RMS Titanic ( April 10, 1912 - April 15, 1912 )

The RMS Titanic, a White Star Line Ship set sail on April 10, 1912 for it's maiden voyage bound for New York from Southampton, UK. While it was nothing like the ocean liners we see today, it was quite magnificent for it's day. 
Remember, this is before flying over the ocean was an everyday occurrence. For most people, a ship was the only way to cross the ocean and start a new life in a new world. The promises given of wealth and land were still being told and many just wanted a chance. Others traversed the open waters regularly for business and social reasons. The mix of passengers on board was great and therefore, it was believed that they should be kept separated according to class.

Captain Edward John Smith
Edward Smith was commissioned to captain the ship on it's first voyage. A ship that was believed to be unsinkable.

RMS Titanic

We all know that on April 14, 1912 at 11:40pm, the ship collided with an iceberg. And by 2:20am on April 15, 1912, the ship had disappeared into the deep ocean off the coast of New Foundland, Canada. More than half of the passengers and crew had gone down with the ship because of poorly managed and too few lifeboats on board.

It is claimed that Edward Smith was last seen handing a baby to a crew member out of the cold Atlantic waters into a lifeboat, then he simply disappeared himself into the black of night with no moon above.

Modern radar was not present and the crew relied on visual sightings of icebergs and other obstacles. The cold current from the North mixing with the warm spring air caused an optical illusion which virtually made the iceberg disappear.

Many bodies were identified and shipped back home but many others were not.
Halifax, Nova Scotia was the closest city to the tragedy and many of the recovered bodies from the frozen ocean were transported there. They were numbered as they were pulled from the water. Today you can visit Fairview Cemetery in Halifax and see the resting place of one hundred and twenty-one victims of that tragic night. There are headstones for each body recovered. Some have names and others remain unknown. But they all have a number. The same number they were assigned as they were pulled from the water. 

For many years, the grave that was visited the most was that of an unknown child. It is still the most visited but through the magic of dna testing, the child now has a name.
Another grave visited often since the movie Titanic came out staring Leonardo DiCaprio is that of 
J. Dawson. However the movie is based on facts but it is a fictional story and the man buried  there is actually believed to be Joseph Dawson, an Irishman that worked in the boiler room of the Titanic and not the famed Jack Dawson. But movie goers including myself can not help but to search him out and pay tribute.
William Denton Cox is also buried there. He was a heroic steward who died escorting 3rd class passengers to the life boats.

We all know the story. But as you stand there surrounded by stones that all have the same date engraved on them, you start to get an idea of just how big of a tragedy this was.

 These fine young men were kind enough to show us around Halifax for the day and had never visited this site before. And who can believe that they haven't seen the movie?!
Unknown Child now has a name

 Of course it wouldn't be a proper visit from the Brighter Side of the Grave if we didn't stop at Halifax's oldest cemetery too.
 At this burial ground, we discovered the grave of the man who burned down the White House back in the War of 1812. (not pictured)

 This beautiful artwork is the handiwork of Mother Nature and Father Time. It may look like a landscape painting, but it simply moisture and mold.

What could be more beautiful than nature imitating nature?
 Thanks for visiting these cemeteries with us.
I hope you enjoy them as much as we do.

A big Thank You for our Host for the day in Halifax.

Hope you enjoyed the pie guys!


jaz@octoberfarm said...

love the pic of you two! isn't halifax wonderful?

MorningAJ said...

Not sure what's up with my computer this afternoon but two comments have now disappeared into the Internet, never to be seen again!

In brief..... I think the visit to the Titanic graves must have been very moving. I can't imagine all those lives lost at once.

Craig said...

Very interesting. I imagine that it would be quite a moving place to visit. I felt that way when I visited Ann Frank's house in Amsterdam.

Stew Adams said...

I would love to visit Ann Frank's house one of these days. The Titanic memorial site was touching, haunting, inspiring and such an eye opener to how real this bit of history was.
So often it takes tragedy to ensure the safety of others in the future.

Stew Adams said...

We loved Halifax! I thought the background of the Titanic staircase was appropriate for having Halifax on the itinerary.

Ms Sparrow said...

I have a photo taken in front of the Titanic staircase several years ago when the exhibit came to the Science Museum here in St Paul. When we entered the exhibit, we were each given the boarding card of an actual person on the ship when it sank. It really brought home the the humanity of those poor souls who died.
It was haunting to see the artifacts that have been brought up from the depths after all these years.

Stew Adams said...

We went to see that exhibit at the Detroit Science Center too. It brings to life some of the tragedy of that fateful trip.

We also have a friend that does a dinner party every April 14th offering a meal that was served in the first class dining room that night in 1912.

Jim said...

Where did my comment go? You are right Stew!

MorningAJ said...

Hello Jim
I lost two comments as well. I think the gremlins got in!

sophie...^5 said...

PIE? What PIE?

We didn't get any pie.


That was the best strawberry/rhubarb pie we've ever had, seriously. No wonder this company is doing so well.

Thanks for the Titanic info.

Guess what?

Still, haven't seen the movie!


Nancy said...

How amazing to have two handsome gents such as Jim and Ron as tour guides. Jealous!

Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your thoughtful comment Stew. Hope you have a great Monday.