- Education and Science
Seven Unique Facts About the Titanic
Throughout the world, "Titanic" has become a household name. It evokes an era of change in the world technologically but also has the perfect recipe of stories and memoirs that many of us can either relate to or aim in curiosity over the events that shaped individual lives that cold, April night.
Never before has one feat of mankind and one moment in time managed to ripple a crease in human history before.
Titanic was part of a trio of liners known as the "Olympic Class". Like the name implies, they were indeed very large, strong, and embodied the luxury of a changing era. In a sense, the Edwardian era was a transitory time in human history. The old ways of the Victorians were clashing with the 'ragtime' era that formed the foundation of the roaring 20's. The modern technology of these Olympic Class Liners saw vision in that transition.
Titanic had a spa on board
Honest to goodness, the RMS Titanic indeed had a spa for passengers that offered everything from massage services to heating and cooling rooms. Passengers navigated from a hot room to a cooling room, equipped with an electric bath sauana. Prices for services using the electric bath saunas started at $1 USD, which is $5 in today's money. 2nd class passengers had access to this facility as well, but limited their services to certain hours on board.
Teen gathering spot
The parisien cafe offered a place to gather the ocean breeze and catch a chat with local passengers. It is most assured that Rose would have relished this environment away from her stuffy mother and Cal. The ship's band often played tunes of the day in this very room on some days. An A La Carte menu was filled with lite meals and pastries. Large picture windows were often opened on warm days to bring in fresh air while passengers ate, like a french cafe.
Public viewing of first class by the second class passengers
The first class public rooms were so beautiful and elegant for the time. Much of the interior was fashioned after hotels and palaces with a "Jacobean" style inside. In second class, you could tour the ship before it left the dock-admiring the teak woodwork, paneling, and multiple resturaunts afforded to first class passengers. This was most likely a PR spin from White Star Line to entice some passengers to consider First Class in future crossings as many second class passengers were well off upper middle class families as well.
New theory suggests the ship broke in two stages
Titanic had a keel known as a 'double bottom' that was believed, based on research by the Nautile submersible team, that held the ship together for a short time even after the "great plunge" by 2:20 AM.
Ironically, it's believed that the ship started to tear and break up at a shallow angle followed by a collapse inward. This theory would suggest, in the darkness of the night, many passengers may not have noticed a true 'break up' of the ship...it happened underwater for the most part.
Private bathrooms with hot water
Specific first class cabins were setting trends at the time for having private bathrooms and bathtubs with hot running water. In 1912, these liners equipped with this were indeed cutting edge in technology. Ironically, the technology was simple enough. A siphon pumped water up from the engine room's ballast, heated by the casing of the boiler's to the passenger cabins upwards. There is some theory that Titanic had replaced this mechanism after the RMS Olympic was launched with a water basin attached and housed on the boat deck for downward gravity and controlled hot water much like a hot water heater in your home.
The A La Carte Restaurant broght modern room service
Have a hankering for a sandwich? Perhaps you were dying to retry an expansion of what you had for dinner last night such as the waldorf pudding. Not only did the A La Carte Restaurant on board tempt your palate with an open menu, but it also allowed you to buzz your room steward to request a meal sent in. The buzzer was often located next to side tables near the bed of each first class cabin.
One of the largest reciprocating engines in the world
Titanic, by engine specifications, was truly a floating "hybrid" vehicle of sorts. The ship encased a large turbine engine as well as a reciprocating engine. Although Cunard liners at the time were engaging in full turbine power with their own in-house power plants, White Star Line emulated luxury and size. With this size also came the immense power of Titanic's engines. A whopping 30,000 HP and the size of a 3-story house!