In the 1898 novel Futility, 14 years before the sinking of the Titanic, Morgan Robertson penned a fictitious tale about a ship named Titan, which collided with an iceberg. Some of the uncanny similarities between the book and the Titanic calamity include the month (April), the length of the ship (Titanic 882.5 feet, Titan 800 feet), and the number of passengers on board (Titanic 2,200; Titan 2000).
It cost $7.5 million to build Titanic and it carried a $5 million insurance policy. It would cost about $400 million to build Titanic today.
Chief Officer Henry T. Wilde wrote a letter to his sister while serving on Titanic that said, "I still don't like this ship. I have a queer feeling about it."
A man listed as L. Hoffman had handed his two young sons to the crew on one of the lifeboats. The man was actually Michel Navratil who had kidnapped his sons during divorce proceedings. The children were returned to their mother once they safely reached New York.
In 1907, White Star Line Chairman J. Bruce Ismay met with Lord Pirrie, the head shipbuilder at Harland and Wolff, to plan the construction of three new gigantic liners, the Olympic, Titanic and Gigantic (later named Britannic). Only Olympic did not sink. Ismay sketched the original plans for Titanic on a napkin.
COST OF A TICKET (one way):
- First Class (parlor suite) 870/$4,350 ($50,000 today)
- First Class (berth) 30/$150 ($1724 today)
- Second Class 12/$60 ($690 today)
- Third Class 3 to 8/$40 ($172 to $460 today)
RMS TITANIC SPECIFICATIONS:
Length: 882 feet, 8 inches/268 metres
Gross tonnage: 46,328 tons
Net tonnage: 24,900 tons
Total capacity: 3547 passengers and crew, fully loaded
Decks: 9 in total
Beam: 92.5 feet/28 meters
Height: 60.5 feet waterline to Boat Deck, 175 feet keel to top of funnels
Depth: 59.5 feet
Draft: about 34 feet
Engines: 2 reciproctating 4 cylinder, triple expansion, direct-acting, inverted engines
Propellers: 3 ; Center turbine: 17 feet ; Left/Right wings: 23 feet 6 inches
Boilers: 29 (24 double ended boilers and 5 single ended boilers)
Furnaces: 159 providing a total heating surface of 144,142 sq. feet
Steam pressure: 215 P.S.I.
Watertight compartments: 16, extending up to F deck
Lifeboat davits: 14 double acting Welin's with Murrays disengaging gear
Lifeboats: 20 total as follows:
14 wood lifeboats each 300" long by 91" by 40" deep with a capacity of 65 persons each
2 wood cutters 252" long by 72" by 30" deep with a capacity of 40 persons each
4 Englehardt collapsible boats 275" by 80" by 30" deep with a capacity of 47 persons each
Lifeboat Total Rated Capacity: 1,178 persons
Personal floatation devices: 3560 life jackets and 49 life buoys
Fuel requirement: 825 tons of coal per day
Water consumption: 14,000 gallons of fresh water per day
Top Speed: 23 knots
Fresh Meat 75,000 lbs
Fresh Fish 11,000 lbs
Salt & dried fish 4,000 lbs
Bacon and Ham 7,500 lbs
Poultry and game 25,000 lbs
Fresh Eggs 40,000
Sausages 2,500 lbs
Potatoes 40 tons
Onions 3,500 lbs
Tomatoes 3,500 lbs
Fresh Asparagus 800 bundles
Fresh Green Peas 2,500 lbs
Lettuce 7,000 heads
Ice Cream 1,750 lbs
Coffee 2,200 lbs
Tea 800 lbs
Rice,dried beans etc.10,000 lbs
Flour 250 barrels
Cereals 10,000 lbs
Grapes 1,000 lbs
Jams and Marmalade 1,120 lbs
Fresh Milk 1,500 gal
Fresh Cream 1,200 qts
Condensed Milk 600 gals
Fresh Butter 6,000lbs
Table Cloths: 6,000
Bed Covers: 3,600
Eiderdown Quilts: 800
Single Sheets: 15,000
Table Napkins: 45,000
Bath Towels: 7,500
Fine Towels: 25,000
Roller Towels: 3,500
Double Sheets: 3,000
Ales and Stout 15,000 bottles
Wines 1,000 bottles
Spirits 850 bottles
Minerals 1,200 bottles
57,600 items of crockery
29,000 pieces of glassware
44,000 pieces of cutlery
Tea Cups: 3,000
Dinner Plates: 12,000
Ice Cream Plates: 5,500
Souffl Dishes: 1,500
Wine Glasses: 2,000
Salt Shakers: 2,000
Pudding Dishes: 1,200
Finger Bowls: 1,000
Oyster Forks: 1,000
Nut Crackers: 300
Egg Spoons: 2,000
Grape Scissors: 1,500
Asparagus Tongs: 400
TITANIC CARGO CLAIMED AS LOST:
3,364 bags of mail and between 700 and 800 parcels.
One Renault 35 hp automobile owned by passenger William Carter.
One Marmalade Machine owned by passenger Edwina Trout.
Oil painting by Blondel, "La Circasienne Au Bain" owned by Hokan Bjrnstrm-Steffanson.
Seven parcels of parchment of the Torah owned by Hersh L. Siebald.
Three crates of ancient models for the Denver Museum.
50 Cases of toothpaste for Park & Tilford
11 bales of rubber for the National City Bank of New York
Eight dozen tennis balls were lost which were to go to R.F. Downey & Co.
A cask of china headed for Tiffany's.
Five Grand Pianos.
Thirty cases of golf clubs and tennis rackets for A.G. Spalding.
A jewelled copy of The Rubiyt by Omar Khayym, with illustrations by Eliku Vedder sold for 405 at auction in March of 1912 to an American bidder. The binding took two years to execute, and the decoration embodied no fewer than 1,500 precious stones, each separately set in gold.
Four cases of opium
2 Parlor Suites each with a 50 foot private promenade and 67 other First Class Staterooms & Suites. Decorating designs included: Louis Seize, Empire, Adams, Italian Renaissance, Louis Quinze, Louis Quatorze, Georgian, Regency, Queen Anne, Modern Dutch and Old Dutch. Some had marble coal burning fireplaces.
Gymnasium with rowing machines, a stationary bicycle and an electric horse.
A heated swimming pool (the first ever built into a vessel).
Squash court on F deck.
2 Barber shops with automated shampooing and drying appliances available for all classes..
First & Second class smoking rooms (for the men).
Reading and writing rooms (for the ladies).
First & Second class libraries.
10,488 square foot First Class Dining Saloon. Seating capacity 554.
Authentic Parisien Caf with French waiters.
A Veranda Cafe with real palm trees.
A piano in the Third Class common room/saloon (a luxury for its day).
Electric light and heat in every stateroom.
4 electric elevators complete with operators. (3 in first class, 1 in second class)
A state of the art infirmary staffed by 2 physicians that included an operating room.
A fully equipped darkroom for amateur photographers to try their skills.
A 5 kilowatt Marconi wireless radio station for sending and receiving passenger's telegrams.
A 50 phone switchboard complete with operator for intra-ship calls.
In 1912, skilled shipyard workers who built Titanic earned 2 ($10) per week.
Unskilled workers earned 1 or less per week.
A single First Class berth would have cost these workers 4 to 8 months wages.
Fee to send a wireless telegram: 12 shillings and sixpence/$3.12 ($36 today), for the first 10 words, and 9 pence per word thereafter.
Passenger telegrams sent & received during the voyage: over 250.
Cost of the Titanic (in 1912): $7,500,000
Cost to build Titanic today: $400,000,000
Captain E.J. Smith, Titanic: 105 a month
Captain Rostron, Carpathia: 53 per month
Seaman Edward Buley: 5 a month
Look-out G.A. Hogg: 5 and 5 shillings a month
Radio Operator Harold Bride: 48 per month
Steward Sidney Daniels: 3 and 15 shillings a month
Stewardess Annie Robinson: 3 and 10 shillings a month
Note: The range of salaries was quite extreme in 1912. In today's money, Captain Smith earned about $72,500 per year while Stewardess Robinson earned only $2400 per year!)