IN THIS ISSUE
Just when you may have thought there is nothing new under the sun regarding the Titanic story, two articles in this third quarter 2013 issue show otherwise.
Without a doubt, the Cooling Room of the Turkish Bath is one of the most iconic interiors associated with Titanic. Over two years, Ken Marschall and Parks Stephenson worked closely together to build out the room in the form of a computer generated (CG) model as complete as possible using information from Ken’s extensive archives. Before Keldysh made it back to port in Jim Cameron’s July 2005 dive, Parks had assimilated the information from that exploration into his CG model. Over the next 6 years, Bill Sauder Ken and Parks would not only fine-tune the Cooling Room model with “new” information from the dive, but also painstakingly construct the rest of the Baths complex as accurately as the collective evidence would allow. The results are breathtaking.
The second story concerns research going back pre-Internet, to the early 1980s when THS Vice-President, Arnold Watson was collecting information for THS’s ground-breaking, Roster of Valor, the first book published listing the victims in the Halifax cemeteries. One of a number of documents not used in “Roster” was a diary written by Frederic A. Hamilton, Mackay-Bennett’s Cable Engineer who described the recovery of Titanic victims. An example: “The cutter lowered, and work commenced and kept up continuously all day, picking up bodies. Hauling the soaked remains in saturated clothing over the side of the cutter is no light task. Fifty-one we have taken on board to-day, two children, three women, and forty-six men, and still the sea seems strewn.” Mr. Hamilton’s vivid description makes the reader almost feel the constant wet and cold as the ship rolled like a cork in the large swells.
White Star’s Boston Service does not get much space when the chronicles of the Line’s history are written. Here are a couple from local reports––two accidents––Britannic III’s grounding in Boston Harbor and the tragic collision of Romanic with the fishing schooner, Natalie B. Nickerson.
Fire and ice. Two powerful perils to navigation––the greatest of these is fire. Few today know that while ice was hardly considered when designing the Titanic, careful precaution went into safeguarding her against fire. Titanic was never threatened by fire in the course of her service life. But, so soon after the centenary of her ice-inspired sinking writes Senan Molony, comes the 100 year anniversary––the burning of the Volturno in October 1913.
Speaking of one hundred years, the U.S. Coast Guard celebrated the centenary of the International Ice Patrol and the THS remembered Titanic with a memorial service, 101 years on at the Titanic Centennial Memorial on April 15, 2013 at Oak Grove Cemetery in Springfield, Mass. Lots of good reading and reflection in this issue.
RESURRECTING TITANIC, PART 1
The Computer-Generated Imagery for James Cameron’s “Exploring the Deep: The Titanic Expeditions”
By Parks Stephenson
BRITANNIC III AGROUND OFF GOVERNOR’S ISLAND IN BOSTON HARBOR
Recollections of the Titanic Tragedy
With thanks to Cecil Stewart and Frederic A. Hamilton
THE QUEEN MARY’S WHISTLE
TRAGEDY IN NANTUCKET SOUND
The Collision of the White Star Liner Romanic and the Schooner Natalie B. Nickerson
TITANIC CENTENNIAL MEMORIAL GARDEN AND WALKWAY DONORS
THE RITE OF COMMITTAL
In Remembrance RMS Titanic 2013
US COAST GUARD CELEBRATES THE 100TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE INTERNATIONAL ICE PATROL
By Petty Officer 2nd Class Jetta H. Disco
THE VOLTURNO INFERNO
By Senan Molony
A violin declared to be on Titanic belonging to Wallace Hartley––the claim is evaluated using eyewitness accounts by people onboard Mackay-Bennett during recovery of victims.
Rich Men Poor Men, Ryersons on the Titanic by Phyllis Ryerse, A Bigger World, The Life and Times of Wm. Edwy Ryerson by Thomas A. Ryerson with Phyllis A. Ryerse, Unsinkable Vampire by Kristin King and The Rise and Fall of Harland & Wolff by Tom McCluskie, reviewed by Tim Trower. The Unseen Olympic: The Ship in Rare Illustrations by Patrick Mylon, reviewed by Paul Louden-Brown.
Front cover: The bell from the Mackay-Bennett, the cable ship with the task of retrieving bodies from the Titanic disaster. Her bell is displayed in the Titanic Museum in Indian Orchard, Mass. (THS collection)
Back cover: A rare postcard of RMS Romanic that was in the Boston service and one of the lesser known White Star vessels. (Photos: Kamuda collection)