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Was The Sinking Of The Titanic Truly An Accident?

With every major disaster, several conspiracy theories are spawned in order to explain the potential cause of the life-changing event.

One such event occurred on the morning of April 15, 1912, when the ocean liner RMS Titanic struck an iceberg on its maiden voyage. The sinking of the ship sent approximately 1,500 people to their icy graves, leaving many unanswered questions.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The Story Behind The Ship

The Titanic, operated by White Star Line, was a luxury Olympic-class ocean liner, which set sail on its maiden voyage from Southampton, England to New York. Its captain, John Smith, said at the time, “God Himself could not sink this ship!” But boy was he wrong…

Around midnight on April 14, 1912, the luxury cruise line struck an iceberg on its starboard side, causing a breach in the hull just below the waterline, and flooding five of its watertight compartments.

Evacuation began shortly after the iceberg was struck, but there was a problem: The ship only carried enough lifeboats to carry half of the people on board. To make matters worse, the inexperienced crew launched the lifeboats into the water while they were barely half-full.

Hundreds of third-class passengers were trapped below deck and drowned before the ship was even fully submerged. Two-and-a-half hours after the crash, the luxury liner completely broke in half and sank to the bottom of the Northern Atlantic Ocean. Those who weren’t fortunate enough to be on a lifeboat froze within 30 minutes of being exposed to the sub-zero water.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Conspiracy Theories

While many believe that the unfortunate events that befell the Titanic were purely accidental, some aren’t convinced. As previously advertised, the Titanic was never filled to capacity.

Only 2,224 of the 3,547 passengers and crew boarded the doomed ship, most of which were wealthy and powerful people, including the owner of White Star Line, J.P. Morgan. This tiny detail led many to believe that some had prior knowledge that the ship wouldn’t make it to its destination.

Some people have suggested that Morgan and the White Star Line plotted to switch the Titanic with the identical and accident-prone sister ship, the RMS Olympic. The Olympic had already been damaged after two collisions, and it’s believed that Morgan allowed Olympic to sail as the Titanic in order to collect insurance. But why would the company risk both its reputation and the lives of thousands for insurance money?


Another theory states that the ship was deliberately sank, just to kill three of its passengers – millionaires Benjamin Guggenheim, Isidor Straus, and John Jacob Astor IV. These men were all extremely vocal against the creation of a Federal Reserve Bank and federal taxes. But was dooming thousands for the lives of three worth it?

The list of conspiracies surrounding the demise of the ship includes a deliberate coal fire, the coverup of a German U-boat attack, and a curse by the mummy of an ancient Egyptian priestess found on the vessel. Ultimately though, none of these theories have ever been proven, and the bottom line is that the sunken ship is still, to this day, believed to be an accidental occurrence.