10 Reasons Why RMS Titanic May Have Been Deliberately Sunk
RMS Titanic is one of the most tragic maritime disasters in history, taking the lives of 1,517 on the fateful night she struck an iceberg on 14th April 1912, 375 nautical miles south of Newfoundland, Canada.
However, have you ever questioned whether the vessel was deliberately sunk? Here are 10 reasons why RMS Titanic may have been a premeditated event by the White Star Line.
1. RMS Olympic
RMS Olympic is the elder sister to RMS Titanic, as they are two of three Olympic-class liners created by the White Star Line, along with RMS Britannic. Three months after RMS Olympic’s maiden voyage, she collided with the British warship HMS Hawke, just off the Isle of Wight. The collision tore two large holes in RMS Olympic’s hull below the waterline.
The accident resulted in an insurance dispute between the Royal Navy and the White Star Line, with Olympic being blamed for the collision due to her scale. The White Star Line were therefore left with significant legal bills, which has caused many to believe RMS Titanic was deliberately sunk so the liner could effectively recover their finances. Why did the White Star Line up their insurance from £7milllion to £12 million one week before Titanic departed Southampton?
2. Twin Ships
RMS Olympic and RMS Titanic were twins – and even adorned the same crockery and interior. There were only a few subtle differences (which we will come to later). It would have therefore been relatively easy to have switched the ships by making small changes, such as the ship’s name – a job that could have been performed by a small, well-paid crew over a weekend period.
50 passengers cancelled their voyage on RMS Titanic a few days earlier, including the owner of the White Star Line, JP Morgan (pictured). Several wealthy, high profile people also cancelled their passage on the ship, including JP Morgan’s friends, Milton and Kitty Hershey, the owners of Hershey’s chocolate, and Guglielmo Marconi, the inventor of the wireless radio that helped RMS Titanic contact other vessels. It is fair to say that Marconi would have benefited from the exposure of his invention following the disaster.
Florence Ismay, the wife of J. Bruce Ismay, the chairman of the White Star Line, also cancelled her journey at the very last minute. Did they know something many other passengers and crew didn’t?
4. The Competitors
Three of JP Morgan’s biggest competitors were first class passengers aboard RMS Titanic: John Jacob Astor, Benjamin Guggenheim and Isidor Straus. All three men died in the disaster, and therefore killed off the competition. All three men were outspoken opponents of JP Morgan’s Federal Reserve.
5. Subtle Differences
RMS Titanic and RMS Olympic only had minor differences. While RMS Olympic had 16 port holes, RMS Titanic had 14. However, Titanic had 16 on her maiden voyage. Also, J. Bruce Ismay also ordered for Titanic’s linoleum flooring to be carpeted – was this to cover Olympic’s worn floors?
The Olympic-class liners were the largest vessels in the world at the time of their launch. The White Star Line therefore opened RMS Olympic up to the public in both Belfast and Liverpool before she set off on her maiden voyage. However, RMS Titanic remained closed until she commenced hers. Did the White Star Line have something to hide?
7. The Crew
J. Bruce Ismay stepped onto a lifeboat to avoid the same fate as the other passengers and crew aboard the ship. Despite all the panic surrounding the event, he managed to send three telegrams to Cedric New York Harbour to ensure the surviving crew members could immediately return to Southampton. The crew were also held for 24 hours once they reached New York and ordered to sign papers – with many believing they were signing a secret act.
8. Captain Smith
Captain Edward James Smith was the captain aboard RMS Titanic, and the previous Captain of RMS Olympic. He was responsible for the ship crashing into HMS Hawke, and may have felt it was his duty to help the White Star Line recover from the disaster.
To add fuel to the flames, Captain Smith unusually hand-picked employees who he felt he could trust, and even dismissed some crew to bring in new employees.
9. Charles Lightoller
Second Officer Charles Lightoller was reportedly evasive at the US Titanic inquiries, and claimed the boat turned to port before the lookout pulled it to the crow’s nest. He also reported that there was no mist 10 minutes before the disaster. However, he said at the UK inquiry that he was in his cabin at the time of the collision. Why would he lie?
He also lied about the number of iceberg warnings from the bridge that morning – when they received 6 warning messages from various ships. Was he trying to act as though the iceberg came as a surprise?
Both Olympic and Titanic had their names engraved four-foot hight onto the ship. However, the examined wreck forced two of the Titanic engraving to fall from the ship’s scrap, revealing the letters ‘M’ and ‘P’ – ‘Olympic’.
So, what do you think? Was the sinking of RMS Titanic real or a deliberate act by the White Star Line? Did the government cover up the scandal? As 20,000 jobs at Harland and Wolff would have been lost, they’d lose Irish investment and lose their next election. We’d love to hear your thoughts.
Looking for more Titanic top 10 articles? Read 10 Titanic Passengers You Have to Know About.