What if the Titanic had NOT broken-up?


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Jack Dawson

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Hi, someone asked if anyone was still in the ship when the stern went under, I would think many had to be since the lighting would have failed before everyone could get up top on deck. Didn't one of the documentaries briefly mention there was evidence passengers were still in the vicinity of the Third class dining saloon when it broke up?
 
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Aaron_2016

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Hi, someone asked if anyone was still in the ship when the stern went under, I would think many had to be since the lighting would have failed before everyone could get up top on deck. Didn't one of the documentaries briefly mention there was evidence passengers were still in the vicinity of the Third class dining saloon when it broke up?

Third class passengers waited at the stern. Many holding their luggage. Some attempted to climb the cranes to reach the upper decks. The baker Charles Joughin saw many Third class passengers trying to find their way below decks and saw them pass through the kitchens on D-deck looking for another way to reach the boat deck (all of the boats were already gone). Joughin was going the opposite way and was trying to reach the stern when he heard the ship beginning to break in two. He said he reached the stern and saw hundreds of people there and he was at the back of the crush. Just moments later the ship completely broke in two. He said:

"This was at the finish I saw the people......I saw third-class passengers coming straggling through the kitchen (D-deck), and they even had their baggage then."


Note: Some survivors said the ship broke in two before the bridge was submerged and before the first funnel fell. e.g. Mrs Ryerson - "The two forward funnels seemed to lean and then she seemed to break in half as if cut with a knife." This sadly means there possibly were 'many' people still below decks when the ship broke in two.


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Jack Dawson

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Hi, do you think so many Third class passengers were bringing their luggage because they have not given up hope (and did not know the situation above decks; that the boats were gone) they would be given a place in a boat? I understand why they wouldn't want to lose what little they had, but I'm left wondering if they expected or believed they would be able to take their luggage off in a boat, or if they just didn't want to abandon all they had in the world?

What a horrific and violent end, very sad. It seems likely that a pretty significant number had to have drowned, never having made it away from the ship to die of hypothermia as so many others did. I always believed that (per Archibald Gracie) when the 'bridge plunge' started, a lot of passengers were caught off guard and were not prepared to suddenly find themselves in a swim or drown scenario. The sudden plunge must have been felt by those at the stern?
 
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Aaron_2016

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The order was women and children first, so the husbands, sons, fathers, would have been forced to wait below decks until it was their turn. Many women I think would not want to be separated from their loved ones and say goodbye in the Third class corridor and among the confusion they stayed below with their loved ones. There was a great deal of confusion because many did not speak or understand English. They would have no idea why the stewards were trying to separate the wives from their husbands. It probably led to a few fights and arguments.

I doubt they would be allowed to take their luggage up to the boat deck. Imagine the chaos when the stewards physically tried to take their luggage out of their hands before they could be allowed to go up top. Passengers were seen just sitting on their luggage as they waited below decks, not having a clue where their wives and children were taken and when they would be back. The officers ordered the lifeboats to stay close to the gangway doors because Lightoller intended that rope ladders would be lowered from the gangway doors so that passengers from the lower decks could climb down into the lifeboats waiting below. Sadly the lifeboats rowed away.

The Captain was seen with a megaphone ordered the lifeboats to return to the ship. 4th officer Boxhall heard the order and took his lifeboat around the stern towards the open gangway door on the starboard side. He said the propellers were out of the water and he noticed a large crowd of passengers standing at the open gangway door on one of the lower decks (D-deck or E-deck). Boxhall thought they were going to jump and try to swim towards his boat. He was worried they would swamp his boat, and decided to row away. Just moments later the ship broke in two. It is unclear if those people managed to jump out. What is interesting is that Colonel Gracie was standing near the bridge and he said:

"My friend Clinch Smith made the proposition that we should leave and go toward the stern. But there arose before us from the decks below a mass of humanity several lines deep converging on the boat deck facing us and completely blocking our passage to the stern. There were women in the crowd as well as men and these seemed to be steerage passengers who had just come up from the decks below. Even among these people there was no hysterical cry, no evidence of panic. Oh the agony of it."

I wonder if that large crowd of people were the same crowd that patiently waited at the gangway doors waiting for the boats to return?





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I guess some people here have too much fantasy. And regarding Joughin he did not say what was claimed here a few posts above.
This is what he stated about the 3rd class passengers at the kitchen on D Deck and this was in the early hours of the sinking not at the end.

6202. Where were the people whom you saw?- In the well deck.
6203. All in the well deck?- Yes.
6204. And they would get from the well deck to the boat deck? - This was at the finish I saw the people. I never saw them in that quarter of the boat till the end.
6205. And you do not know? - I saw third class passengers coming straggling through the kitchen, and they even had their baggage then.
6206. What part of the boat was the kitchen in? - On D deck, that is just the deck above the emergency door we are speaking about.
6207. How would they get from D deck to the boat deck? - Just a short staircase, which, under ordinary conditions is private for the crew, but I suppose they walked through it. One man had two bags slung over his shoulder and one in his hand, an Italian, or some nationality like that.


Joughin was in the A Deck Pantry when he heard the sound of breaking metal.

No way the ship break before the bridge went under water.
 
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Aaron_2016

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6204. And they would get from the well deck to the boat deck? - This was at the finish I saw the people. I never saw them in that quarter of the boat till the end.
6205. And you do not know? - I saw third class passengers coming straggling through the kitchen, and they even had their baggage then.

No way the ship break before the bridge went under water.


When Joughin said "and they even had their baggage then." it certainly suggests he is describing the later stages of the sinking and not the early stages. I think it is highly possible that the ship broke before the bridge was completely submerged because the strong list to port and the stresses of that coupled with the stern rising slightly higher must have been enormous. Survivors near the bridge felt the bow give a 'sudden plunge' downward for just a moment and then felt it rise back up again. This strongly suggests the bow had broken from the stern before the first funnel fell. e.g.


Eugene Daly

"I reached a collapsible boat that was fastened to the deck by two rings. It could not be moved. During that brief time that I worked on cutting one of those ropes, the Titanic gave a lurch downward and we were in the water up to our hips. She rose again slightly, and I succeeded in cutting the second rope which held her stern. Another lurch threw this boat, myself, off and away from the ship into the water."


William Mellors

"Suddenly, her nose on which I was, seemed to suddenly rise from underneath the water and I and a few more that were close by cut the ropes that held the boat to the falls."


George Brayton
"I saw the waters reach the bridge 'after' the vessel broke in two and the forward portion began sinking first."

Mrs Ida Hippach
"We heard a fearful explosion. I saw the ship split open. At the same time the ship’s bow rose up in the air as the steamer sank towards the center."

Jack Thayer
"The ship appeared to split, well forward to midship, and bow or buckle upwards."

Ruth Becker
She demonstrated to people with her hands how the ship broke apart. With two funnels going one way and two funnels going the other way.

Emily Ryerson
"The two forward funnels seemed to lean and then she seemed to break in half as if cut with a knife."


Charles Lightoller

"Finally, the ship took a dive, reeling for a moment, then plunging......There was an explosion.....There was another explosion, and I came to the surface....The ship seemed to be heaving tremendous sighs as she went down.....The ship had turned around while I was under the water."



Lightoller said he was sucked down with the bow as it went under and was blown up to the surface by a terrific blast of air. He said "The ship had turned around while I was under the water". I think it is certainly logical to presume the ship must have broken in two before the bridge was submerged. This caused the bow to take a momentary plunge and come up again as it tried to regain balance and was still connected to the stern which was stopping the bow from sinking immediately as half of the decks were probably still connected. Then the bow and stern sank in the middle and compressed everything causing coal, smoke and sparks to shoot out of the funnels (seen by survivors) and while all of that was happening on the surface during the break up, then I think it is highly likely that great amounts of air inside would be blasted out as the stern now canted up and pushed the bow further down by force, so that when the bow gave a second plunge and went down and was sucking Lightoller down with it, the escaping air blasted out and brought him to the surface, but while he was being sucked down the stern was breaking free and keeled over to port and was already rotating around, so that when Lightoller reached the surface he saw the ship had turned around and the propellers were above his head.

The survivors in the collapsible boat also noticed the stern had completely rotated around and they thought the propellers were going to smash down onto their boat. Lightoller was asked: Q - You were under water? A - Yes, sir. And then this explosion, or whatever it was, took place. Certainly, I think it was the boilers exploded. There was a terrific blast of air and water, and I was blown out clear." Question really is I guess, how long would it take for the stern to rotate after it broke, because if the ship really was still intact before Lightoller was sucked down and then broke while he was under water and had already turned around when Lightoller reached the surface, it means he was under the water for a very long time, or likely the ship had broke in two before he entered the water, and as it went down, he went down with it, and was blown free by the escaping air, and when he reached the surface he realized "the ship had turned around while I was under the water".


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Joughin saw several 3rd class passengers with luggage (as did Hendrickson on E Deck shortly after midnight).

5976. When you went down to your room and found this door open, did you at that time see third class people coming up? - Coming along the alleyway some women, with two bags in their hands. They would not let go of them.
5977. A number of third class passengers were coming up? - Yes.
5978. You have already helped us about the time. Could you tell us at all what time you think that was? - You say it was half-past twelve when you got on to the boat deck yourself? - That was just after I had passed the first lot of bread up, and I went down to my room for a drink, as a matter of fact, and as I was coming back I followed up my men on to the deck.
5979. Does that mean it would be about a quarter-past twelve? - A little after that.
5980. Something between a quarter-past twelve and half-past twelve? - Yes, about that.

Interesting how Thayers later recollections were used and not his 1912 interview. However going with what he later stated, no way the ship break before the bridge was under water. (The rising of the boat deck has nothing to do with the break up).

"The water was over the base of the first funnel. The mass of people on board were surging back, always back toward the floating stern. The rumble and roar continued, with even louder distinct wrenchings and tearings of boilers and engines from their beds. Suddenly the whole superstructure of the ship appeared to split, well forward to midship, and bow or buckle upwards.
The second funnel, large enough for two automobiles to pass through abreast, seemed to be lifted off, emitting a cloud of sparks It looked as if it would fall on top of me. It missed me by only twenty or thirty feet."
 

Cam Houseman

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The order was women and children first, so the husbands, sons, fathers, would have been forced to wait below decks until it was their turn. Many women I think would not want to be separated from their loved ones and say goodbye in the Third class corridor and among the confusion they stayed below with their loved ones. There was a great deal of confusion because many did not speak or understand English. They would have no idea why the stewards were trying to separate the wives from their husbands. It probably led to a few fights and arguments.

I doubt they would be allowed to take their luggage up to the boat deck. Imagine the chaos when the stewards physically tried to take their luggage out of their hands before they could be allowed to go up top. Passengers were seen just sitting on their luggage as they waited below decks, not having a clue where their wives and children were taken and when they would be back. The officers ordered the lifeboats to stay close to the gangway doors because Lightoller intended that rope ladders would be lowered from the gangway doors so that passengers from the lower decks could climb down into the lifeboats waiting below. Sadly the lifeboats rowed away.

The Captain was seen with a megaphone ordered the lifeboats to return to the ship. 4th officer Boxhall heard the order and took his lifeboat around the stern towards the open gangway door on the starboard side. He said the propellers were out of the water and he noticed a large crowd of passengers standing at the open gangway door on one of the lower decks (D-deck or E-deck). Boxhall thought they were going to jump and try to swim towards his boat. He was worried they would swamp his boat, and decided to row away. Just moments later the ship broke in two. It is unclear if those people managed to jump out. What is interesting is that Colonel Gracie was standing near the bridge and he said:

"My friend Clinch Smith made the proposition that we should leave and go toward the stern. But there arose before us from the decks below a mass of humanity several lines deep converging on the boat deck facing us and completely blocking our passage to the stern. There were women in the crowd as well as men and these seemed to be steerage passengers who had just come up from the decks below. Even among these people there was no hysterical cry, no evidence of panic. Oh the agony of it."

I wonder if that large crowd of people were the same crowd that patiently waited at the gangway doors waiting for the boats to return?





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hi, is it still possible to play JC Titanic explorer??
 

Petey37

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I wonder. If the Titanic had not broken up as it did, a lot of air would have remained trapped in the unflooded stern section as the ship sank around 02:19. Would this not have caused pressure effects (Explosion? Implosion?) in the stern with increasing depth?
Had Titanic sank intact as it sank it would have imploded or exploded, had it not done either when it got the sea floor, the stern would have raised up than capsized on to the port side or the starboard side than eventually collapsed on to it self, that is my theory of what would have happened
 
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20smithg

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I wonder. If the Titanic had not broken up as it did, a lot of air would have remained trapped in the unflooded stern section as the ship sank around 02:19. Would this not have caused pressure effects (Explosion? Implosion?) in the stern with increasing depth?
Incidentally, I wonder whether the stern would be in better shape if the ship had gone down in one piece. But to answer the question, yes, the break-up probably bought the stern an extra minute or two.

Cheers,
Adam.
Not sure about that. True, she would've been more aerodynamic, but if she sank as a whole more air could have been trapped within. This would have resulted in far more internal destruction. At that point, forces from hitting the sea floor at a 30-40 degree angle could decimate the rearward-center section.The ripples along the bow are proof she hit hard. The main reason why the bow is so intact is because the gaping hole at the back. A giant door for air to escape. The stern wasn't aerodynamic but it was also closed off. She would've collapsed. Especially with the 'downblast' she created from driving through the water.
 

Mike Bull2019

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It is 'hydrodynamic', not 'aerodynamic'.

Had the ship not broken I suspect that the stern would have been heavily damaged internally by remaining air being compressed and blasted through and out of the hull, and then as it went under things like the poop deck catching the water flow and neding back would have still happened.

The complete ship would have been heavier and hit the bottom a lot harder, so probably burying itself more at the bow and possibly totally breaking the bow off as the rest tripped over it- a continuation of the bow bend we see today. (i.e, forecastle embeds, rest keeps going) Possibly the whole ship would have broken her back as she slammed down, likely upright.

Plus of course there would be virtually no debris field, with everything staying inside the ship.
 

James Luber

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Had the ship not broke she most likely would've have gone down at around a 70 degree angle. Not completely vertical, but close to it. The bow would be MOSTLY full of water due to the forward grand staircase's dome breaking, which would only accelerate the forward plunge and cause enormous sums of water to flood aft. The stern would be mostly dry once it had been submerged. After a certain depth had been reached, it would've imploded. The ship would begin to settle, still having a forward list by the time it hit the bottom.

-James
 
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Mike Bull2019

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...as per the never-ending thread about the stern, people still have the wrong idea about what is/what causes an 'implosion'.
 
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