Monday, June 24, 2013

Interesting facts-The story of Olympic and Titanic

Olympic and Titanic where nearly identical twins - sister ships designed to restore the White Star Line's domination of the North Atlantic trade route. Built side by side from the same plans, the sister ships were in turn the largest moving objects ever made by the hand of man. From their immense hulls to their four funnels, the vessels instilled a sense of safety and luxury unlike anything the oceangoing public had seen thus far.

With her maiden voyage in June 1911, Olympic became the world's biggest ship and unquestionably the most luxurious. She was like a floating hotel with a swimming pool and squash racket court, gymnasium and palm court, elevators and Grand Staircase.

Capt. Edward J. Smith was commodore of the fleet and attracted the wealthiest passengers to line's new flagship. It was all going as planned until an accident in Sept. 1911 in which the Olympic collided with a British cruiser, the Hawke.

interesting-facts-olympic-and-titanic1An investigation into the accident called the Olympic - and her captain - into question. Did the enormous Olympic induce suction that pulled the smaller craft into her side? Was the Southampton pilot - and by extension Captain Smith - responsible for the collision? Had ships gotten too big too fast?

Olympic's repairs delayed work on Titanic, pushing her maiden voyage back until April 10, 1912. On that date, the two ships were in service together for the first time, realizing the White Star Line's plans for continuous service to and from New York and Southampton via their new super liners.

interesting-facts-olympic-and-titanicOn the night of April 14-15, Olympic was only one day out of New York harbor when she received a distress signal from Titanic, which had struck an iceberg and was sinking. Olympic's captain, Herbert J. Haddock, ordered his ship to speed toward the sinking sister ship.

As Olympic raced into the night, her passengers and crew prepared for a rescue operation that, tragically,they would never be close enough to enact.



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