Daniel Elton Harmon
South Carolina Chronicler & Editor

 

Titanic "Centennial Reader" E-Book Released in May

 

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A Century of Titanic Lore—

Focusing on Curious Details

Available in Kindle Format From Amazon!


Jack Thayer of Philadelphia, 17 years old, stood on the boat deck of a sinking ocean liner on a freezing North Atlantic night and saw his young life race before him in mental review. He later would write: “I thought of all the good times I had had, and of all the future pleasures I would never enjoy; of my Father and Mother; of my Sisters and Brother. I looked at myself as though from some far-off place. I sincerely pitied myself. It seemed so unnecessary. . . .”

The atmospheric temperature was 28 degrees Fahrenheit, the water temperature 31 degrees. Thayer didn't have those details, but he knew it would be untenable, beyond a quarter of an hour, for anyone swimming in the sea to survive. . . .

—From the Prologue to On a Sea So Cold & Still

* * * * * * *

The Titanic, Daniel Elton Harmon's volume in Chelsea House' "Great Disasters: Reforms and Ramifications" series, was published in 2000. It focused on the aftermath of the great calamity that occurred on 14-15 April 1912. Expanding his research, Harmon has completed his sequel, On a Sea So Cold & Still. This "Centennial Reader" recounts the timeless story—with an emphasis on aspects of the saga that may be unfamiliar to many 21st-Century readers. Coincidences and continuing postscripts abound, and countless questions linger:

* Why were the lookouts not equipped with binoculars?

* Was there a smoldering fire in one of the coal bunkers, and if so, did it have an impact on events after the iceberg collision?

* What if, instead of ordering a veer to port, First Officer William Murdoch had responded to the alarm by letting the ship hit the iceberg head-on? Would the damage have been lessened?

* Just how culpable were J. Bruce Ismay, director of the shipping company, who managed to find a place aboard a lifeboat; Sir Cosmo and Lady Duff Gordon, who not only took places in a third-full lifeboat but may have discouraged the boat crew from returning to the scene to save others; or Capt. Stanley Lord of the nearby steamship Californian, accused of failing to respond to the Titanic's summonses for help?

* What were Capt. Smith's final moments?

* Was there a "third ship" besides the Californian in the area, capable of executing an early rescue operation?

* What was on the mind of wireless operator Jack Phillips when, during the last minutes at his post, he transmitted the enigmatic signal "V"—and repeated it?

On a Sea So Cold & Still now is available as an e-book directly from Amazon.com. The price is $4.99. CLICK HERE for details and a preview.

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