Monday, 3 September 2012

The Titanic – Ship of Dreams



On April 02, 2012, The Isle of Man Post Office presents a set of six stamps to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the loss of RMS Titanic after striking an iceberg. It is one of the deadliest maritime disasters in peacetime history, more than 1,500 passengers and crew died in the early hours of 15th April 1912.


Captained by Edward John Smith, one of the company’s most respected and experienced officers, and billed as the largest and most luxurious ship in the world.

The trip had begun five days earlier when 914 passengers boarded the liner with 884 members of crew, including a squash professional, swimming pool lifeguards, Turkish bath attendants and a chaperone for single women in third class .

Then  Titanic steamed into the Channel and headed for Cherbourg, where a further 274 passengers joined the voyage and then on to Queenstown, in southern Ireland, where they picked up a further 136 passengers and the Irish mail. At 1.30pm on 11th April, Titanic headed into the Atlantic for what was expected to be a six-day voyage.

5831 IOMP Bird Study FDC2
First day Cover.

At 11.39pm on 14th April, Fred Fleet, spotted the iceberg looming in the dark. He rang the bell three times and telephoned the bridge.

First Officer Murdoch immediately gave the order ‘hard-a-starboard’ and signaled the engine room ‘stop’ but the liner was cruising at 22 knots and within a minute it had struck the iceberg. Captain Smith rushed to the bridge.


After inspecting the damage, it was clear that the ship was doomed: although there was only a small hole, the iceberg had buckled the steel plates and sheered the rivets below the waterline; water was spilling over the bulkheads, flooding the first six compartments and weighing the box down.

At 12.05am, the order was given to uncover the lifeboats. But the operation was disorganized. Eighteen lifeboats were launched during more than one hours since 12.45 am.

Ten minutes after the last lifeboat was launched at 2.05 am, the bridge was under water and the forward funnel collapsed. There was a rumbling like thunder from the bowels of the ship and at 2.20am the lights went out and the Titanic sank, plunging more than 1,500 people, including Captain Smith, into the icy sea.

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