The SS Californian (the ship which did not respond to the Titanic's distress signals) was also owned by International Mercantile Marine Co. but it was operated under the Leyland Line.
And if there was a Kate Murphy on board she's been reported as claiming there were gates in place.Were the third class passengers really locked below as the movie Titanic suggests?
Yes, but not exactly in the way that the film implies. Titanic history tells us that gates did exist which barred the third class passengers from the other passengers. However, these gates weren't in place to stop a third class passenger from taking a first class passenger's seat on a lifeboat. Instead, the gates were in place as a regulatory measure to prevent the "less cleanly" third class passengers from transmitting diseases and infections to the others. This would save time when the ship arrived in New York, as only the third class passengers would need a health inspection.
At the time of the sinking, some stewards kept gates locked waiting for instructions, while others allowed women and children to the upper decks. As a result of poor communication from the upper decks, the dire reality of the situation was never conveyed. The crew failed to search for passengers in the cabins and common areas, and the fact that some third class passengers did not speak English, also presented a problem. As a result, many of the third class passengers were left to fend for themselves. Only 25 percent of the third class passengers survived the disaster.
This concern about whether 3rd class was mistreated is not new and was a major focus of the American inquiry. And it's certainly true some in 3rd did face some resistance from the crew. What Camoron did was blow smoke into those class concerns and pump them up beyond reality. IMO, this aspect of the tragedy has been blown way out of proportion, and Cameron is chiefly responsible.
Last edited by Old Pio; 04-16-2012 at 12:39 AM.
In general, trying to evaluate actions of the past based on currently acceptable moral standards results in significant misunderstanding and mischaracterization of what happened and why it happened.
Last edited by Almington; 04-16-2012 at 12:41 AM.
I have read that on the Titanic there was a problem carrying out the "women and children first" dictum. On one side (port?) it was interpreted as "women and children ONLY) on the other, "women and children first."
Last edited by Old Pio; 04-16-2012 at 01:06 AM.
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