If communications had been better


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Rachel Walker

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Did lack of communication between the Titanic and the California, and between Smith and Ismay and so on play a role in sending so many people to their watery graves? How?

National History Day is coming up (some big report thats required for school)and the theme this year is communication in history. I am trying to find a way to fit the sinking of Titanic into that theme, but I'm not sure if I can.

Thanks!
Toodlez,
Rachel
 

Bob Godfrey

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Rachel, the role of wireless in general would be a good theme. You could consider not only the way it was used to aid the rescue effort but also how it helped to bring information (and mis-information) about the disaster to the attention of the world. You could perhaps expand coverage to include other disasters at sea in which wireless communication had a part to play.

Another possible theme would be to examine the way in which the disaster was communicated to the public by the newspapers of the day - eg not always accurately and with emphasis on certain aspects and certain people rather than others.
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Rachel Walker

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Thanks for the help. I had never thought of that. Do you know of any books that might focus on that?
 
Jun 11, 2000
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And another way might be to examine how the news of the accident was communicated to the different classes of passengers - no PA address system, various versions relayed by stewards etc. Oddly, I set my students a similar exercise, though it was statistically-based, and they all got rather involved and over-heated about it.
 
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Rachel,
I'm re-naming your thread "If communications had been better" and moving it to the "Wisdom of Hindsight" folder, which is quite active at the moment. So you might get even more responses there.
 
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Rachel Walker

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Who was the wireless general? Do you know of any websites or printed material that might focus on him?
 
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Rachel Walker

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I would probably want to focus on Harold Bride (assistant telegraphist) because I have to do a monologue, and it would make sense for me to portray someone who survived the sinking.
 
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Rachel Walker

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If there isn't much info on him, i will probably portray the man in charge if the telegraph.
 

Jason D. Tiller

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Rachel,

There is some information available on Harold Bride. You can have a look at his biography which is on this site, click HERE.

As for the Senior Telegraphist, you're referring to John (Jack) Phillips.

For starters, I would have a look at his biography which is also right here on this site:

https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/biography.php/phillips_john_george_2051.html

Next, I would recommend that you visit this site:

http://www.nautical-papers.com/onwatch/phillips/phillips.html

It's a terrific site and it's authored by our very own Inger Sheil and Jemma Hyder who have both done a remarkable job in researching the lives of the Officers and the Wireless Operators.

I hope this helps and all the best in your project. Let us know how you did!
 
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