R.M.S. Titanic and Washington D.C.


Dave Gittins

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Mar 16, 2000
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My friend Maureen Zottoli has written a Titanic book with a difference. It deals with Titanic's connection with Washington DC. It covers people connected with Washington and the involvement of the US government. I've not been able to read all of it yet, but Maureen knows her way around Washington and the way the government functions, so she's well qualified to discuss them. How many know that Titanic went as far as the US Supreme Court?

The book is available from Barnes and Noble.
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Thanks to Dave and Michael for their kind words. And yes, the book is available online through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

This book started out merely as a tour guide, but ended up being an historian's kind of history book. DOJ Detectives and Navy ships.

The Washington DC area was my home for decades and I worked within the federal government for 27 years. Provided touring tips and information to Titanic groups, but most of all my bewilderment took hold that hardly anything was in print regarding Washington D.C. and the Titanic for the historian or the newbie. The President, the Executive Branch, the Legislative Branch and the Judicial Branch, congressmen, Senators, high social classes and mailmen. I left the forums to concentrate on the book. Locations. People. Government. Who were the cabinet members? Who were the members that attended Taft's meeting? The book presents a lot, but it also draws out questions too.

I expect this book will generate a lot of chatter, especially Appendix C....which I added based on a South Carolina Titanic Conference 2001 and great respect for Phil Hind. But the rest of the book is pure history. The ship experts and Titanic historians are here on this site...I merely have provided the players and the stage for what unfolded in Washington DC.

Hope you enjoy it.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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I ordered it yesterday, Mo. I think that a work such as what you described is needed to fill a niche. There was a lot going on in the courts long after the disaster itself which is amazingly obscure today.

BTW, is that you I saw on Facebook? I have a page there.
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Wow, thanks Mike. I wrote the book for that very reason. Court system is confusing enough. Just working to determine where I knew things had to exist taught me how to look for stuff. The courts has to have evidence and tracking that helped. The Library of Congress and the Archives have such different filing systems. And the cabinet size and departments can change so drastically over time with presidential changes. I found stuff for other researchers as I located it and proceeded on my own path. I learned so much. But I love this site and all the people here, because when I new nothing, all of you here welcomed me. Having access to DOJ Library and Supreme Court Reports really helped as well. I worked hard to not step on anyone else's research. Having been raised in the DC area really helped as well. I also had access to the Archives, Library of Congress and even newspaper libraries like the Washington Post and the Evening Star in DC.

Yeap, that is "me" on facebook. But I have just recovered from 3 difficult procedures due to cancer so haven't been on facebook for some time. (I need to get back there....or they may think that curmudgeon thing is contagious...hahahaha...LOL).

You are awesome Mike. Dave too! Thanks for the vote of confidence.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Well, I'll send you a friend request which you can sign off on or round file as you wish. Sorry to hear about the cancer. My sisters have both dealt with breast cancer. I hope yours is behind you.

My page is easy enough to see for what it is. I don't neatly toe any one sides line on the political spectrum and I don't mind poking both with a stick.
 
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Sep 12, 2000
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The heavy hitters on this site are experts in their field. No doubt. This book does not claim any expertise on specific ship building details nor does it provide Titanic crew or passenger data. It is completely about insights into what was happening in Washington DC at the federal level and civilian level.

This book is about the events, decisions, and people of Washington DC. The New York Times and Washington Post printed stories of DOJ detectives. And do you wonder about that? Where's the case file on that? Was it a specific case on Titanic or was the investigation based on something else?

What was Taft's cabinet like in 1912? Who were the people who attended Taft's cabinet briefing? Have you ever wondered about the US Navy ships that went out to the S.O.S. site?

This book began as a Tour Guide and turned into a solid resource guide to support historians and students of Titanic and American history.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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And since it started as a tour guide, it shouldn't surprise anybody that it reads like one. I expect that anybody looking for a smooth polished narrative is going to be disappointed but that's not what it's about. It's about the people and the places along with some amazingly obscure facts that a researcher really needs to know.

For example, the dog's breakfast of identifier codes used for wireless stations was not set to a uniform or agreed upon standard, and often not consistently updated. The same three letter identifier being used for Titanic and a lighthouse in Canada could reasonably seen as a source for befuddlement, confusion and irritation.

Did anybody know this was the case before?

I know it now.
 

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