Sunday, April 15, 2012

100 Years Later, Titanic Mystery Endures

The RMS Titanic sank a century ago. But the mystery of who or what caused the ship to sink endures. Did an 1898 Novel, The Wreck of the Titan, inspire history's greatest maritime insurance fraud? Was the Titanic switched with its damaged sister ship, Olympic? Is that the luxury liner that lies at the bottom of the North Atlantic Ocean? Which vessel appears in the video below? Read on …

Futility, or the Wreck of the Titan is an 1898 novella written by Morgan Robertson. The story features the ocean liner Titan, which sinks in the North Atlantic after striking an iceberg. The Titan and its sinking have been noted to be very similar to the real-life passenger ship RMS Titanic, which sank 14 years later. -Wikipedia

Did Morgan Robertson's novel inspire Titanic's principal owner, J.P. Morgan (pictured on the left), and his partners to switch the ship with its hopelessly damaged sister ship, Olympic, and turn the sisters into twins, in order to sink the Olympic and collect otherwise un-collectable insurance money, thus saving their firm from bankruptcy? Did the plot go horribly wrong when the Olympic/Titanic hit an iceberg, and the Morgan-owned rescue ship was too far from the struck vessel to save its passengers and crew? Why were the surviving crew members detained, isolated, photographed and treated like criminals upon their return to England before being allowed to reunite with their families? Click, read, watch….

POSTSCRIPT: Robertson was found dead (conveniently?) in an Atlantic City hotel room in 1915. The cause of death was believed to have been a drug overdose.