Monday, July 09, 2012

The Sinking of the Titanic

April 15th of this year marked the centennial of the sinking of the Titanic. Anna was only two weeks old at the time, so I was in full survival mode with taking care of myself and the new baby.  I was able to do little more than notice the online buzz about the Titanic and read a great article about John Harper -- a man who shared the gospel with countless passengers (some of whom gave their hearts to Christ) before going down with the ship.

Things have settled down to something close to normal -- the new normal anyway -- so I have been trying to do more reading.  The Sinking of the Titanic came to my attention, and I was able to read it on my Kindle.  Bruce M. Caplan edited and reissued Logan Marshall's The Sinking of the Titanic and Great Sea Disasters which was originally published within weeks of the disaster.

The Sinking of the Titanic includes accounts of many survivors who tell of seeing family members and friends for the last time before escaping in life boats.  Many of them were plucked from the icy water after jumping or falling from the floundering ship.  Their straightforward accounts are touching in their simplicity and humanized for me the often sensationalized story of the sinking Titanic.

It is evident the original author was slightly infatuated by the richest passengers on board and named several of them repeatedly in his narrative (almost in the same way some writers use key words more than necessary to increase traffic on their webpage). However, he does not leave out the second and third classes entirely, and he devoted much time to the heroism of the crew, including the wireless operator, the band, and the young cabin boys who made no attempt to risk the lives of others by saving themselves.  They and more than a thousand others perished in the icy Atlantic that night.

This is not a book one can say they enjoyed, but it was a good read about an important world event.  My husband shocked me this week by relaying something he read online.  Apparently, many young people are surprised to learn that the Titanic movie was based on a true story.  They thought it was all made up for the movie.  "People actually died?"

Yes, they did.  This book will bring the stories of real people to life in a way one is not likely to forget soon.

1 comment:

Robert Wayne Moore said...

Good review, Elizabeth.