The Ship of Dreams
Captain Edward J. Smith
maiden voyage was to be his final crossing of his career for the White
Star Line. He began his career as an apprentice on a clipper ship
in 1869, he gradually worked his way up the ladder, joining White Star
in 1880 as fourth officer on the old Celtic. By 1887 he was captain
of the Republic, and since then he had commanded no few than 17 White Star
vessels. All the times he honed the qualities that that made the
trans-Atlantic captain such a unique breed. He was a superb seaman.
In 1907, Smith told the New York Press:
"When anyone asks me how I can best describe my experiences of nearly 40
years at sea, I merely say "uneventful." I have never been i n an accident
of any sort worth speaking about. I never saw a wreck and have never
been wrecked, nor was I ever in any predicament that threatened to end
in disaster of any sort."
So, with his unblemished record, Smith was given command of the great new
Olympic when she entered service in 1911. She was nearly twice as
big as any ship he had handled before.
Early in 1912, Captain Smith was named to command the new and even bigger
Titanic, flagship of the fleet. He would take her over and back on
her maiden voyage, and then retire. He was now 59, and this would
be a way of thanking him for his years of loyal service.
Joseph Bruce Ismay
Chairman of the White Star Line at the time of the sinking. Ismay chose
to go off on a lifeboat instead of staying aboard the ship. Because
of this, he was nicknamed by the public as J. BRUTE Ismay. Never
regaining his dignity, he retired as Chairman of the White Star Line on
June 30, 1913, and began an ever -widening withdrawal from public life.
After the Titanic, Ismay never participated in public functions.
He amused himself by sitting on a park bench, chatting anonymously with
down-and-outers. He liked to watch passing parades, looking at them
alone and lost in the crowd. He died of a stroke at his home in London,
October 17, 1937.
John George Phillips, Senior Wireless
First Wireless Operator of the R.M.S. Titanic. Senior Marconi operator,
he was 24 and was employed by the Marconi International Marine Communication
Company, Ltd. which provided wireless messages, free of charge, to
the White Star Line. Most famous for his line:
"Shurt up, shut up, I"m busy, I'm working Cape Race." When the Californian
tried to warn of approaching ice.
Working to the very end, relaying details of the sinking ship, Phillips
abandoned his post at 2:17 am. He died on the Titanic.
Harold Bride, Second Wireless Operator
Harold Bride was Phillips assistant on the R.M.S. Titanic. Bride
took over when Phillips needed rest, the Titanic had a 24 hour wireless
operation; especially for the numerous messages passengers wanted sent.
After abandoning the wireless room at 2:17am. He clung with other
passengers and Officer Lightoller on the capsized collapsible B, lifeboat,
which was nearly missed by the forward funnel collapsing, which crushed
a number of people. He survived the disaster and helped relay the
news on the Carpathia.
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