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For Dummies® Commemorates the 100th Anniversary of the Sinking of the Titanic
The Titanic has been the subject of books, documentaries, and feature films, as well as a Broadway musical and a popular traveling museum of artifacts. This April 14 will be the 100th anniversary of the sinking. To memorialize this, Oscar-winning director James Cameron is re-releasing his acclaimed film Titanic in 3-D and remembrance activities are scheduled worldwide. For those interested in learning more about the famous ship, the Dummies series brings The Titanic For Dummies® (Wiley, 978-1-118-17766-2, January 2012), an informative guide that helps separate fact from fiction with facsimile reprints of original documents, engravings, articles, and manifests.
The Titanic For Dummies® outlines the lives and final moments of some of the more famous and intriguing passengers aboard the luxury liner. It examines the building of the ship, life onboard during its maiden voyage, tragic decisions made that fateful night, the discovery of the wreck, and the many controversies that have emerged in the century since the sinking.
Here are some interesting tidbits from the book's author, Stephen Spignesi:
- The sinking of the Titanic spurred the creation of the International Ice Patrol. Since then, in close to a century of Atlantic seafaring, not a single ship has struck an iceberg.
- Did the 1898 novella Wreck of the Titan, with its uncanny factual similarities to the Titanic tragedy, predict the disaster?
- Third class accommodations aboard Titanic were so nice, they equalled second class accommodations on other ships sailing at the time.
- The wreck of the Titanic was discovered thanks to the U.S. Navy, allowing Robert Ballard a few days to go looking for it after completion of an unrelated secret mission for the Navy.
- There is an ongoing argument about salvaging Titanic artifacts. Is salvaging from the debris field educationally justifiable, or desecration of a graveyard?
- J. Bruce Ismay, the owner of the White Star Line, got into a lifeboat and survived, when many women and children did not. He was probably the most-hated survivor. Was this animus justifed?
Belfast, Ireland and Southampton, England plan on opening new museums and major commercial complexes in 2012, and commemorative cruises are planned. In addition, the International Maritime Organization will dedicate World Maritime Day to the victims of the Titanic. The book includes information on the various anniversary events planned throughout the world.