- Titanic: The Ship of Dreams
- Scary Facts About Huge Tourist Attractions
- The Old Haunted Amusement Park
- Eerie Ghost Stories from Orphanages
- Forests That Are Really Haunted
- The Ghosts That Haunt Chicago
- Ghost Stories from Disneyland
- Haunted Islands Around the World
- Arresting Ghost Stories from Prison
- Haunted Caves to Crawl Into
- In the Dark Corners of the City of Light
- Real Haunted Places in Asia
- Creepiest Ghost Stories of WWII
- From the Grounds of Plantations
- Ghosts Who Haunt the Highways
- Creepy Ghost Stories from the US Civil War
- Black Plague Ghost Stories
- Hauntings in Old Mental Institutions
- The Most Haunted US Cemeteries
- Ghost Stories from The Green Mile
- Of Course Texas Is Haunted
- Ghosts Around the Vatican
- The World's Most Haunted Museums
- America's Most Haunted Colleges
- Real Haunted Towns in Texas
- America's Most Haunted Stretches of Road
- Catacombs Around the World
- Haunted Sites Around the World
- Creepy Stories from the Old West
- American Theaters That Are Haunted
- Where You Can Feel Real Ghosts
12 Spine-Tingling Ghost Stories About The Titanic
The RMS Titanic set out on its maiden voyage with more than 2,200 people aboard in April 1912. Tragically, only 706 of those passengers would survive. The ship was moving too fast one freezing night and struck an iceberg and went down. Those who perished in the event suffered a terrifying and agonizing demise. Any paranormal enthusiast will tell you that strong emotions paired with an untimely end are key ingredients in most hauntings.
For eight decades, the RMS Titanic and all its contents sat at the bottom of the Atlantic until underwater excavation teams brought artifacts back up to the surface. Now, these pieces of history are offering a rare glimpse at what it was like to be on the massive ship and hints at the ghostly spirits that still linger around the doomed vessel. The pieces displayed apparently still have a connection to the former passengers who possessed them. Read on to discover some of their spooky tales.
A Lady In Black Appears On The Grand Staircase
The Titanic Artifact Exhibition at The Luxor Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas apparently has a ghost wandering its grand staircase. Employees and guests alike have seen this mysterious woman, who wears a black period dress with a white collar and her hair in a bun.
As a photographer prepped for the opening of the exhibition, he spotted the woman casually walking down the Grand Staircase. He was startled, as he hadn’t seen anyone enter and the staircase was roped off. He assumed she was part of the exhibit and asked if she’d like him to photograph her. She ignored him. He went back to setting up, but suddenly she was directly behind him. Again, he offered a photograph and this time she didn’t just ignore him - she vanished.
The Ghosts Take Portraits Off The Walls
The exhibit at The Luxor includes a portrait of J. Bruce Ismay , one of the Titanic ’s builders. He apparently fled the sinking ship, leaving women and children behind. Witnesses on the lifeboats claim he kept his back to the ship as it descended, and allegedly, he was the one insisting the ship speed up after receiving ice warnings. Perhaps it's not surprising that the ghosts of the Titanic seem to dislike him.
One early morning as the crew came in to open the exhibit, they found the portrait of Ismay on the floor. The manager watched the surveillance video from the night before and was stunned to see the picture begin shaking before coming off of the wall, apparently of its own accord.
A Ghostly Tour Took Place On The SS Winterhaven
What if you saw a ghost without even realizing it? In the case of Second Officer Leonard Bishop of the SS Winterhaven , that was exactly what happened. In 1977, he gave a tour of the ship to a man who he assumed was a passenger. The British man was very soft spoken and extremely interested in every detail of the vessel, almost unusually so. Bishop found the man to be a bit strange - not unpleasant, just odd.
It wasn’t until a few years later, after seeing a photo of Titanic Captain Edward John Smith that Bishop realized why the situation felt so off. Bishop exclaimed to a friend, "I know him, I gave him a tour of my boat!" The friend laughed and informed Bishop that the man had been long deceased: "That man was the captain of the Titanic !"
The Ghost Of The Titanic’s Lookout Watches The Promenade Deck
Frederick Fleet , a British sailor, served as the lookout aboard the RMS Titanic . He spotted the deadly iceberg and warned the bridge. Tragically, his warning came too late; the ship was going too fast to avoid a collision. Fleet survived the sinking of the Titanic , but not his own depression. After his wife’s passing just after Christmas in 1964, he was evicted by his brother-in-law and hung himself in the garden.
His grave went unmarked until the Titanic Historical Society erected a headstone for him in 1993. It appears his spirit is not quite at rest, however. Witnesses have claimed to see him keeping watch over the Las Vegas exhibition’s Promenade Deck, perhaps driven by his guilt to keep watch, even in the afterlife.
Museum Staffers Are Poked And Prodded By Unseen Hands
According to staff and visitors, the Titanic artifact exhibition at The Luxor is extremely haunted. Eerie sounds, uneasy feelings, and actual sightings of ghostly specters have all been reported. Artifacts expert Joe Zimmer seems to attract quite a bit of attention from these supposed spirits. He says he's had his name called and his hair and clothing tugged on, all followed by the sounds of laughter.
And late at night, Zimmer reports hearing a phantom orchestra play.
Ghost Hunters Captured A Voice On Tape
The Georgia Aquarium also houses potentially haunted artifacts from the Titanic . The employees have claimed to see shadows, hear voices, and even be touched by the spirits. The paranormal activity is so intense that Syfy Channel’s Ghost Hunters came in to investigate.
They reportedly captured a recording of a voice saying, "No, please wait" in the iceberg room. The team also said they got readings of several anomalous cold spots and witnessed a shadowy figure. After reviewing their findings, they concluded that the Titanic exhibit at the Georgia Aquarium is, in fact, haunted.
A Comforting Spirit Haunts The Titanic Belfast Museum
As they like to say in Ireland, the Titanic was “built by the Irish, sunk by the English.” The Titanic Belfast museum commemorates the ship in Belfast, Ireland, and it seems to have a ghostly presence of its own. In 2009, a woman touring the museum listened to the final distress call of the RMS Titanic . She described the events that followed in a letter to the hosts of the podcast Real Ghost Stories Online .
She claimed that while hearing the original Morse Code and seeing the words of the RMS Titanic ’s distress call, she became overwhelmingly emotional. Her heart was pounding, and she felt as anxious and heartbroken as if she were the radio controller herself. Shaking and sick to her stomach, she began crying. Walking away to get some air, she felt a hand on her shoulder, and a male voice said softly, “It’s okay.”
She assumed it was her friend and reached up to brush his hand, but realized no one was there. Was it the spirit of the radio controller, Jack Phillips, she wonders? Was he reassuring her that he was at peace with what happened?
Captain Smith Haunts His Former Home in England
According to Louise and Neil Bonner, owners of the former home of Titanic Captain Edward John Smith, the shipmaster lingers in his house. The couple have spent the last decade renting the 19th century Victorian, and their tenants have reported feeling icy chills passing through them, hearing strange noises, and even seeing full-bodied apparitions of the Captain. The property has also suffered a flood in the kitchen and unusually cold gusts in the dining room.
According to Mr. Bonner, “some years ago we had a single chap living in there and he rang up one day convinced he had seen the ghost of the Captain... he was in bed when he saw him drift across the room.”
Spirit Orbs Hover Over The Titanic's Resting Place
People aboard ships passing the site where the RMS Titanic went down have reported mysterious balls of light, believed to be spirit orbs, hovering in the area. On more than one occasion, submarines traveling those depths have received unusual radio interference.
Odd noises and S.O.S. calls with no origins crackle through their communication equipment.
An Exhibit Visitor Is Touched From Beyond The Grave
While visiting family in Missouri, a teenager went to the traveling Titanic exhibit and had a brush with the paranormal.
Posting on YourGhostStories.com , she recounts the experience:
We were walking through a hallway to get to the artifacts, and I was behind everyone. I suddenly felt a soft tug at the back of my t-shirt. I turned around to see who the culprit was, but the hallway was absolutely empty. I quickly faced forward to catch a potential trickster, but no one was sneaking away and everyone in front of me was far ahead.
<p>A Deathbed Premonition Was Made The Night The Titanic Went Down</p>
A creepy legend surrounding the Titanic comes from the deathbed of a young Scottish girl named Jessie. On the same night the ship went down, Jessie was on the verge of dying. In her delirious state, she supposedly spoke of a massive sinking ship and a man named Wally playing a fiddle.
She had no way of knowing the Titanic would sink that night, or that Wallace "Wally" Hartley played his violin one last time as he and his band went down with the ship.
An Author Predicted The Sinking Of The Titanic 14 Years Before It Happened
Morgan Robertson published The Wreck of the Titan in 1898. Fourteen years later, the real-life Titanic disaster happened, and many took that as a sign that the author had precognitive abilities . Robertson rejected those claims, saying he was just drawing on his real-life experience as a seaman.
However, there are plenty of chillingly specific parallels between the book and reality. Besides the similar names, the fictitious Titan , like the Titanic , was supposed to be the largest of its kind and an unsinkable ship. It also lacked enough lifeboats to accommodate its passenger load and struck an iceberg while going too fast in the North Atlantic. Both disasters also took place in April and cost thousands of people their lives.
Want More 'Titanic?'
Even though the RMS Titanic slipped beneath the icy surface of the Atlantic more than 100 years ago, people continue to be fascinated by it. Whether it be first-person accounts of what happened on board or historical analyses of the captain’s decisions that fateful night , there is plenty to dig into if you’re someone who is interested in all things Titanic. If you – or someone you know – just can’t get enough of the "Unsinkable Ship," here are our staff’s picks of what to read, watch, and buy next.
A Night to Remember: The Sinking of the Titanic , the #1 New York Times bestselling book by Walter Lord. Based on interviews with sixty-three survivors, Lord’s moment-by-moment account is among the finest books written about one of the twentieth century’s bleakest nights.
A popular gift volume featuring dozens of meticulously accurate, full-color paintings – including a fold-out illustration of the whole Titanic – Titanic: An Illustrated History offers a wealth of information about the "unsinkable" cruise ship and its fatal voyage.
The History Channel’s documentary Titanic: The Complete Story is ideal for anyone who really wants all of the details from that fateful night in a format they can watch and re-watch anytime.
For younger readers, Voyage on the Great Titanic: The Diary of Margaret Ann Brady, R.M.S. Titanic, 1912 in the popular Dear America series offers a unique view of life onboard the ship from the perspective of a young girl.
For the collector, miniature lover, and design enthusiast, there are rare photographic prints , scale models , and even Titanic trivia available.
Our staff has written lots on the subject, too, so stick around!
- Fascinating And Rare Photos That Document The Titanic’s Journey
- Facts We Just Learned About The Titanic That Made Us Say ‘Really?’
- Small But Poignant Details From The Movie ‘Titanic’ That Make Us Never Want To Let Go
- RMS Titanic
- Graveyard Shift
- Strange True Stories
- Pop Culture
Lists of spooky places around the world where you might see, here, or feel a real ghost.
- Discussion Board
- Aliens, Ancient Astronauts
- Astronomy & the Sciences
- Ghost Stories & the Paranormal
- Monsters, Creatures & Big Foot
- Mystery & the UnExplained
- Paranormal Activity PGH
- Popular TV shows
- Superstition & Oddities
- Everything Else
Ghosts of the Titanic: Haunting Tales that Endure Time
- by Steve Paslow
Titanic – Image from James Cameron 1997 film.
The sinking of the Titanic in April 1912 is a tragedy etched into the annals of history. The loss of over 1,500 lives in the icy depths of the North Atlantic continues to captivate the imagination and stir emotions even to this day. Beyond the physical remnants of the shipwreck, numerous stories and accounts of ghostly encounters associated with the Titanic have emerged, adding an eerie and haunting dimension to the already haunting tale. In this article, we will delve into some of the reported ghostly experiences and explore the enduring legacy of the Titanic’s haunting spirits.
One of the most prominent ghostly legends of the Titanic involves the “Lady in Black.” Many witnesses have reported sightings of a mysterious woman dressed in black mourning attire at various Titanic-related events including in passenger and freighters that frequent the Atlantic ocean and locations of where the ship sank. She is often seen weeping or staring off into the distance with an air of profound sadness. Some speculate that she may be the spirit of a grieving widow who lost her husband in the tragedy. The Lady in Black has become an iconic figure in the Titanic’s ghostly lore, her presence evoking a sense of deep sorrow and longing.
Another ghostly figure associated with the Titanic is that of Captain Edward J. Smith, the ship’s commander. Witnesses claim to have seen his apparition on the decks of other sailing vessels, wearing his captain’s uniform and staring out into the vast expanse of the sea. Captain Smith’s ghost is often described as a solemn and authoritative presence, forever tied to the vessel he commanded on its ill-fated maiden voyage.
In addition to the Lady in Black and Captain Smith, there have been reports of other ghostly figures representing the passengers and crew of the Titanic. Apparitions of crew members carrying out their duties, dressed in the attire of the early 20th century, have been witnessed by many. Passengers in period clothing, seemingly oblivious to their surroundings, have also been reported. These spectral figures roam the decks, peer out from portholes, or simply wander aimlessly, forever trapped in the realm between life and death. The paranormal activity associated with the Titanic is not limited to sea faring craft. The White Star Line building in Liverpool, England, which once served as the headquarters for the company that owned the Titanic, has its own share of ghostly tales. Visitors and employees have reported strange phenomena such as unexplained noises, flickering lights, and a palpable sense of unease within the building. Some believe that the spirits of the Titanic’s victims have found their way to this place, perhaps seeking solace or resolution for the tragic events they experienced.
While personal encounters and eyewitness testimonies form a significant part of the Titanic’s ghostly legacy, psychic mediums and paranormal investigators have also delved into the mysteries surrounding the disaster. Mediums claim to have made contact with the spirits of Titanic passengers and crew members through séances and other spiritual practices. These mediums often provide messages or insights attributed to the deceased, shedding light on their experiences and emotions during the ship’s final hours. While the veracity of such claims remains a subject of debate, they contribute to the ongoing fascination and exploration of the Titanic’s haunting legacy.
Beyond individual encounters and spiritual investigations, the tales of the Titanic’s ghosts have found resonance in popular culture. Books, documentaries, and films have explored the supernatural aspects of the Titanic’s story, perpetuating the fascination and intrigue surrounding its haunting spirits. From fictionalized accounts of ghostly romances aboard the ship to speculative theories about time travel and parallel dimensions, the ghostly legends of the Titanic continue to capture the imagination of storytellers and audiences alike.
However, it is essential to approach the subject of the Titanic’s ghosts with a critical and skeptical mindset. The allure of the paranormal often leads to exaggerated claims, sensationalism, and the potential for hoaxes. Many reported ghostly encounters can be attributed to psychological factors such as suggestion, sensory illusions, or the power of suggestion. The emotional weight associated with the Titanic’s tragedy can also influence perceptions and contribute to the creation of ghostly narratives. Nevertheless, the enduring fascination with the Titanic’s ghosts serves a purpose beyond mere entertainment. It keeps the memory of the Titanic alive, reminding us of the human cost of the disaster and the need for continued efforts in maritime safety. The stories and legends surrounding the Titanic’s haunting spirits offer a glimpse into the enduring power of human imagination and our desire to seek meaning and connection with the past.
One of the larger collections of Titanic artifacts located at the Titanic Museum Branson, MO.
One of the most poignant examples of a reported ghostly encounter on the Titanic comes from the account of the Strauses, a prominent couple who tragically perished on the ship. Isidor Straus, co-owner of Macy’s department store, and his wife Ida chose to stay together rather than separate during the chaos of the sinking. According to witnesses, the couple was last seen standing arm in arm on the deck, refusing to board a lifeboat. The spirits are often seen where actual Titanic artifacts have been rescuced from the sunken ship. The artifacts have been put on dispay and have traveled accross the country with recreations of the ships rooms and Grand Stair case.
Since then, there have been numerous claims of sightings of their apparitions, still united in death, walking together hand in hand on the reconstructed decks of the Titanic. These sightings serve as a reminder of the selflessness and love that characterized some of the Titanic’s passengers. Another notable example involves the ghostly presence of children on the ship. The Titanic carried many families, and tragically, a significant number of children lost their lives in the disaster. Witnesses have reported hearing the sounds of children laughing, playing, or crying in the corridors or near the Grand Staircase. Some claim to have seen shadowy figures running or playing in the hallways, only to disappear when approached. These apparitions evoke a profound sense of sadness and loss, representing the innocence that was abruptly taken away on that fateful night.
Reports of paranormal phenomena extend beyond the physical artifacts or the posessions of the ill fated ships passengers. The Titanic Historical Society, an organization dedicated to preserving the memory of the Titanic, has received accounts of ghostly encounters from individuals who have visited the society’s headquarters in the United States. Visitors have reported unexplained cold spots, objects moving on their own, or the feeling of being watched by unseen eyes. While these experiences cannot be proven scientifically, they contribute to the ongoing fascination with the Titanic’s haunting spirits.
The enduring appeal of the Titanic’s ghostly legends lies in their ability to connect us to a specific moment in history and evoke a range of emotions. They remind us of the fragility of human existence, the indomitable spirit of those who perished, and the unresolved stories that remain embedded within the fabric of the ship’s wreckage. Whether one believes in the existence of spirits or considers the ghostly encounters as products of human imagination, the Titanic’s haunting legacy is a testament to the power of collective memory and the enduring impact of historical events.
In conclusion, the ghosts of the Titanic continue to captivate the collective imagination, as stories of ghostly encounters and paranormal phenomena persist to this day. From the Lady in Black to the spirits of Captain Smith, crew members, and children, the specters associated with the Titanic evoke a sense of tragedy, longing, and unresolved stories. While skeptics may dismiss such accounts as products of suggestion or emotional attachment, they contribute to the ongoing fascination with the Titanic’s haunting legacy. Whether as a reminder of human loss or as a symbol of the unexplained mysteries that surround us, the ghosts of the Titanic keep the memory of the ship and its passengers alive, ensuring that their stories endure for generations to come.
VISIT MYSTIC SCIENCES FOR MORE ARTICLES!
Leave a Reply Cancel reply
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Haunting Whispers of the Fog: Unveiling the Ghosts of San Francisco
Hollywood: Famous Ghosts of Yesterday
Capturing the Unseen: Exploring Famous Ghost Photographs
Enjoy Articles From Mystic Sciences?
Get articles delivered directly to your inbox!
ENTER YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS BELOW
THANK YOU FOR SIGNING UP TO
MYSTIC SCIENCES NEWSLETTER!
PLEASE CHECK YOUR E-MAIL
Haunting tales: Learn about the Titanic’s ghosts during October tours
- Show more sharing options
- Copy Link URL Copied!
Spooky times are headed to Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition at the Luxor when the Haunted Ghost Tours return every Saturday in October at 8 p.m.
Don’t worry; this exhibit is good for the whole family, taking guests on a tour of the remains of the “unsinkable” ship that hit an iceberg on April 15, 1912, and sank to the bottom of the North Atlantic Ocean on her maiden voyage.
During the ghost tour, meet some of the passengers on the RMS Titanic and hear stories of the exhibition staff’s ghostly encounters.
The exhibit features more than 300 artifacts rescued from the bottom of the Atlantic, and some of the employees and guests there have wondered if the spirits of former passengers returned to find their possessions.
One tale tells the story of the “Lady in Black,” often seen on the Grand Staircase crying for her famous friend, Margaret Brown.
The Titanic’s lookout, Frederick Fleet, has been spotted watching over the exhibition’s Promenade Deck, trying to right his late sighting of the iceberg.
Another passenger predicted the sinking of the “Ship of Dreams” when he wrote to a friend a few days before he perished in the North Atlantic. “Right now I wish the ‘Titanic’ were lying at the bottom of the ocean,” he wrote.
Head over to the Haunted Ghost Tours on Saturdays at 8 p.m. all October.
Tickets, which include the ghost tour, go for $32 for adults, $30 for seniors and $24 for children 4-12 years of age.
Tickets: Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition, (800) 557-7428
It's a date
Get our L.A. Goes Out newsletter, with the week's best events, to help you explore and experience our city.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.
More From the Los Angeles Times
Travel & Experiences
This must be Los Feliz
Oct. 26, 2023
‘Squid Game’ in real life? The competition is coming to L.A. — and you can be part of it
Oct. 25, 2023
Tiffani Thiessen fed me fried chicken, cheesy enchiladas, beef jerky and a Michelin tasting menu. We had leftovers
‘I’ve never seen anything like this’: Death Valley gleams with water, wildflowers and color
Oct. 20, 2023
Titanic Hauntings: Ghosts of the Sea
On the clear, frigid morning of April 15 th , 1912, the R.M.S. Titanic sank into the waters of the North Atlantic after striking an iceberg several hours earlier. Of the 2,208 souls aboard, only 709 would survive the sinking. Today, Titanic’s legacy lives on in both fact and myth, but some of the most chilling stories lie in tales of its hauntings, where the restless spirits of those who died are rumored to occupy graveyards, artifacts, and even the site of the sinking itself. Do those who perished so tragically continue to haunt these connections to the famed ocean liner? Whispers and wild tales continue to circulate, and it seems as if these ghosts of the sea are not content to rest.
1. The Fairview Lawn Cemetery
2. The Five Fisherman Restaurant and Grill
Some say the ghosts of Titanic victims abound at the Five Fisherman Restaurant and Grill. This four-story building opened in 1816, first as a schoolhouse; however, later on, it was purchased by a family who turned it into a mortuary. When the bodies of some of the Titanic victims were recovered, they were brought to this building and held there until the burials could take place. Today, the building is a popular eatery, but employees and diners alike have experienced odd happenings there.
These eerie incidents must surely be the acts of the unquiet spirits that remain where their earthly remains were brought after the sinking.
3. The Luxor Exhibit in Las Vegas, Nevada
The Titanic Exhibit in Las Vegas’ Luxor Hotel and Casino has its fair share of ghost stories. The most popular is the Lady of the Grand Staircase, who has been spotted at the replica staircase by more than one person. Photographers and guests alike have seen this apparition, clothed in a black period dress. It is said that she appears and vanishes without warning and never speaks.
4. Titanic’s Final Resting Place
If any Titanic -related locale is haunted, it must be the place where so many people lost their lives on that fateful night in the middle of the North Atlantic. Those who have visited the site since have confirmed ghostly activities, including odd, glowing lights visible at night that are said to be the spirits of those who died in the water. Deep-sea vessels that have explored the area near the sinking have reported receiving eerie, faint S.O.S. calls that fade in and out and seem to have no traceable source. Are these the ghosts of the sea, calling out from the past, or just the result of some sailor’s overactive imagination? Perhaps the mystery will never be solved, but one thing is for sure: there is an ocean of unrest surrounding the spot where Titanic sank forever from sight.
No one can be certain what lies beyond this life, but if these stories of Titanic hauntings are to be believed, then those who lost their lives on the morning of April 15 th , 1912, have never found their way to eternal peace. It could be that they will vanish when the ship itself is finally consumed by the ocean, but until then, these ghosts of the sea will continue to fascinate and frighten those who see them.
Titanic Ship Titanic Wreck Titanic Survivors Lego Titanic
Titanic Movie Titanic Museums Titanic Deaths
Fascination with Titanic has continued unabated, even 111 years after its sinking
The deteriorating wreck of the RMS Titanic lies in pitch-black darkness more than 2 miles below the surface of the remote North Atlantic, the casualty of a collision with an iceberg — and, some say, of human hubris — that sunk the largest passenger ship of its time and claimed 1,496 lives in 1912.
It’s not the worst maritime tragedy in peacetime, and the Titanic’s shattered bones lay undiscovered until 1985. But the great ship’s hold on the popular imagination has continued to remain dramatic, close, and durable.
And so it continues, 111 years later, as a sprawling search continues for a tiny submersible that disappeared Sunday with five passengers bound for the experience of a lifetime: a close encounter with the once-mighty Titanic.
“It’s the fascination of such an impossible story, and I think that fascination will continue on and on,” said Don Lynch, a Los Angeles-based author who advised director James Cameron on the 1997 blockbuster “Titanic” and joined the filmmaker on two dives to the wreck in a 7-foot-wide sphere.
“It’s the biggest ship in the world; it’s on its maiden voyage; it’s supposed to be unsinkable; and there are rich and famous people on board,” added Lynch, official historian for the Titanic Historical Society, created in 1963 in Springfield.
The ship was a behemoth — 883 feet long, 92 feet wide, and 175 feet high from the keel to the top of its four stacks.
The 1997 film, which depicted the sinking in striking detail, revived interest in the Titanic, but the tale of the doomed ship had never strayed far from public consciousness. More than a dozen films have been made about the tragedy, including some produced only months afterward, and hundreds of books have been published.
Those books include “A Night to Remember,” a 1955 nonfiction account by Walter Lord that found its way to movie houses three years later. Lynch, who co-authored “Titanic: An Illustrated History” in 1992, said the appetite for Titanic books has been enormous.
“The ship sinks so slowly, so there’s all this incredible drama, and the band is playing right up to the end,” Lynch said. “There are different things that people focus on; there’s bravery, of course, and there’s also cowardice.”
Paul Burns, a Titanic Historical Society board member, said the ship’s lasting appeal lies in its indelible humanity.
“It’s a story that’s never ended,” said Burns, who also is chair of Titanic Museum Attractions, which displays artifacts from the ship at museums in Missouri and Tennessee. His favorite artifact, Burns said, is a pin cushion that Francis Brown, a Jesuit priest in training, had bought on the Titanic and given to his niece after disembarking near Cork, Ireland.
If Brown had continued on the ship across the Atlantic, Burns said, he probably would not have survived.
Dan Finamore, curator of maritime art and history at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, said the Titanic has a compelling resonance that cuts across popular culture.
“It’s always the Titanic that people turn to,” Finamore said. “At a basic level, it has something to do with the hubris involved, and something with human failing. You realize this is the apex of elegant life, and then you’re on your way to the ocean bottom.”
The Peabody Essex has an original plan of first-class cabins that wealthy passengers would use to choose where they wanted to stay, Finamore said. The collection also has a pocket watch that stopped when a passenger hit the water.
The Titanic, he said, “is an icon, a symbol that is lost and cannot be replaced, no matter how much money you have today.”
The ship’s excruciatingly long sinking — 2 hours and 40 minutes after striking an iceberg late on April 14, 1912 — is yet another riveting aspect of the tragedy that occurred 900 miles east of Cape Cod.
As time passed — from the officers first considering the collision a nuisance, then slowly realizing its devastating damage and shepherding too few people onto too few lifeboats — the prospect of dying in frigid ocean waters crept closer and closer for two-thirds of the passengers and crew.
Only 712 survived, many of them women and children who had been given seats in the lifeboats while husbands, fathers, and sons remained on board and perished. But there also were women, such as Ida Straus, who refused to leave her husband, Isidor, the co-owner of Macy’s, and chose to go to her death with him.
And toward the end, as the ship’s decks began to slant, the Titanic’s band played on.
The tragedy for the ship, bound for New York, has connections that persist to this day. The Widener Memorial Library at Harvard University was named for first-class passenger Harry Elkins Widener, a 27-year-old Philadelphia businessman and Harvard graduate who died along with his father, George D. Widener.
The library was built with a $2 million donation by Harry’s mother, Eleanor Elkins Widener, who had been given a seat in a lifeboat and survived.
Visitors still stop by the graves of Titanic victims who were buried in Halifax, Nova Scotia. And in Boston, as newspapers carried the names of survivors, the first games ever were played at Fenway Park, between the Red Sox and the New York Highlanders, who would later become the Yankees.
Lynch, the author who visited the wreck in 2001 for a documentary with Cameron, said the search for the missing submersible Titan has rekindled his memories of seeing the Titanic for the first time, including viewing the bow of the ship he had studied for so long, where the emergency flares were launched, and where Ida and Isidor Straus might have stood.
He recalled looking through robotic cameras at cabins and reception areas and even a doctor’s office with medicine bottles still stashed away.
“It really hit close to home because I had been in a submersible there. I’ve experienced the bottom of the ocean in a very tiny vehicle,” Lynch said, “It was just phenomenal to go to places that had never been photographed before.
“It meant a lot to me emotionally.”
Brian MacQuarrie can be reached at [email protected] .
Hosting a Goosebumps Watch Party
Throwing A Last Minute Halloween Together For Kids
Goosebumps 2023 Iconic 90’s Horror Rebooted For The Modern Age
The Nun 2 Streaming Info & Quick Demonology Lesson
The ghosts of the titanic.
The RMS Titanic set out on its maiden voyage with 2,208 passengers aboard in April of 1912. Tragically, only 712 of those passengers would survive. It was dark, freezing, and the ship was moving too fast when it struck an iceberg and sank. The 1,496 people who died that night suffered a terrifying and agonizing death. Any paranormal enthusiast will tell you strong emotions such as these paired with untimely death are key ingredients in a haunting.
For eight decades the RMS Titanic and all its contents sat at the bottom of the Atlantic until underwater excavation teams brought the historical artifacts back up to the surface. Now, these pieces of history in addition to incredible recreations of the ship’s interior are offering realistic tours of what it was like to be on the massive ship. The exhibit at the Luxor Hotel Las Vegas seems to be a hotspot for paranormal activity. It features over 300 artifacts that appear to have the spirits of former passengers attached to them. The number of scary stories from employees and visitors who have come into contact with items from the Titanic seems to keep stacking up.
An Author Predicted The Sinking Of The Titanic 14 Years Before It Happened Published in 1898, was “The Wreck of the Titan” written by Morgan Robertson. 14-years later, his book came true and many believed he must have had some kind of precognitive abilities that he wasn’t aware of. There were plenty of reasons passenger liners would sink at this period in time. It would be a common fear and popular topic, however, the specifics of this particular fiction narrative are so spine chillingly accurate that it’s hard to not to wonder if it was a warning with some paranormal origins.
As if the eerily similar names weren’t enough, like the RMS Titanic, the fictitious Titan was supposed to be the largest of its kind, an unsinkable ship, that tragically lacked enough lifeboats to accommodate its passenger load. In the book, the ship also struck an iceberg while going to fast, and sank 400 nautical miles off Newfoundland–exactly like the Titanic did in 1912. This tragedy, both in real life and in the book, took place in April and cost over 1,500 passengers their lives.
The Ghost Of Frederick Fleet, The Titanic’s lookout, Still Watches The Promenade Deck Frederick Fleet, a British sailor, served as the lookout aboard the RMS Titanic. He spotted the deadly iceberg and warned, “Iceberg, right ahead!” Though, his warning came too late for the ship to avoid at the speed it was going. Fleet survived the sinking of the Titanic, but not his own depression. After his wife’s death just after Christmas of 1964, he was evicted by his brother-in-law and hung himself in house’s garden.
His grave went unmarked until the Titanic Historical Society erected a headstone for him in 1993. It appears his spirit is not quite at rest however, witnesses have claimed to see him keeping watch over the Las Vegas exhibition’s Promenade Deck, driven by his guilt to keep watch even in death.
An Artifacts Expert Has Been Poked And Prodded By Unseen Hands According to staff and visitors, The Artifact Exhibition at The Luxor is extremely haunted. Eerie sounds, unsettling feelings, and actual sightings of ghostly specters have all been reported.
Artifacts expert Joe Zimmer seems to attract quite a bit of attention from the spirits attached to these objects on display. He’s had his name called, his hair pulled, and his clothing tugged on, all followed by the sounds of laughter. He has admitted to being thoroughly creeped out after closing down for the night, knowing full well that he was alone only to hear a phantom orchestra.
The Ghosts Of The Titanic See No Need To Honor Bruce Ismay The Exhibit at The Luxor includes a portrait of Bruce Ismay, one of the Titanic’s builders who was disgraced after he fled the sinking ship, leaving women and children behind. Witnesses on the lifeboats claim he kept his back to the ship as it sank and allegedly he was the one insisting the ship speed up after receiving ice warnings. Considering this, it’s no surprise the media put him on blast once he returned and apparently the souls of those who died on the Titanic aren’t too fond of him either.
One early morning as the crew came in to open the exhibit, they found the portrait of Ismay on the floor, it wasn’t damaged but they couldn’t figure out how it got off the wall. The manager watched the surveillance video from the night before and was stunned to find the picture just began shaking and then was plucked from the wall and put on the floor but there was no one there.
A Lady In Black Haunts The Grand Staircase At The Artifact Exhibit In Las Vegas The Titanic Artifact Exhibition at The Luxor Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas has a popular ghost wandering its grand staircase. Employees and guests alike have all witnessed this mysterious woman wearing a black period dress with a striking white collar and her hair in a bun.
As a photographer prepped for the opening of the Exhibition, he spotted the woman casually walking down the Grand Staircase. He was startled, he hadn’t seen anyone enter, everything was still locked up, and no one was allowed on the staircase anyway, it’s roped off.
He figured she was apart of the exhibit and asked if she’d like him to photographer her. She ignored him. He went back to setting up but suddenly she was directly behind him. Again he offered a photograph and this time she didn’t just ignore him, she vanished.
Titanic’s Captain Edward John Smith Haunts His Former Home in England According to Louise and Neil Bonner, owners of the former home of Titanic Captain Edward John Smith, the shipmaster likes to make it known that he is still there. The couple has spent the last decade renting the 19th century Victorian out and their tenants have reported the same unexplained icy chills passing through them, strange noises, and even full-bodied apparitions of the Captain. The property has also suffered a flood in the kitchen and unusually cold gusts in the dining room.
According to Mr. Bonner, “some years ago we had a single chap living in there and he rang up one day convinced he had seen the ghost of the captain.” Bonner went on to explain that, “he was in bed when he saw him drift across the room.”
A Deathbed Premonition Was Made The Night The Titanic Sank A creepy legend surrounding the Titanic came from the deathbed of a young Scottish girl named Jessie Sayre. On the same night, the Titanic sank, Jessie Sayre died and it seemed as though she could see those dying that same night with her. In her delirious state, she spoke of a massive sinking ship and a man named Wally playing a fiddle.
She had no way of knowing the Titanic was sinking that night or that Wallace (Wally) Hartley sat and continued to play his violin one last time as he and his band sank with the ship.
Vessels Passing Through The Site Have Witnessed Paranormal Anomalies People aboard ships passing the site where the RMS Titanic went down have reported mysterious balls of light, believed to be spirit orbs, hovering in the area.
On more than one occasion, submarines traveling those ominous depths have received unusual radio interference. Odd noises and SOS calls with no origins crackling through their communication equipment.
A Ghostly Tour Took Place On The SS Winterhaven Some of the best ghost stories are those in which the parties involved don’t realize they are in the presence of a spirit until long after the fact. In the case of second officer Leonard Bishop of the SS Winterhaven, this was exactly what happened. Back in 1977, he gave a tour of the ship to who he assumed was a passenger. The British man was very soft spoken and extremely interested in every detail of the vessel, almost unusually so. Bishop found the man to be a bit strange, not unpleasant, just odd and memorable.
It wasn’t until a few years later, after seeing a photo of Titanic Captain Edward John Smith that Bishop realized why the situation felt so off. Bishop exclaimed to a friend, ” I know him, I gave him a tour of my boat” The friend laughed it off and informed Bishop that the man had been long dead, “impossible! That man was the captain of the Titanic!”
A Teen Visiting A Traveling Titanic Artifacts Exhibit Gets A Tug From Beyond The Grave While visiting family in Missouri, a teenager went to a traveling Titanic Exhibit and had a brush with the paranormal. Posting under the name “PrettyInPain”, she recounts the experience .
“We were walking through a hallway to get to the artifacts, and I was behind everyone. I suddenly felt a soft tug at the back of my t-shirt. I turned around to see who the culprit was, but the hallway was absolutely empty. I quickly faced forward to catch a potential trickster, but no one was sneaking away and everyone in front of me was far ahead.”
After finishing the tour, the poster finally confides in her mother. Upon hearing the tale, her mother confirms that she’s heard many strange stories from others about the same exhibit.
A Comforting Spirit Haunts The Titanic Belfast Museum As they like to say in Ireland the Titanic was, “Built by the Irish, sunk by the English.” Now, in Belfast Ireland, where the Titanic was constructed, The Titanic Belfast Museum has been established and seems to have a presence of its own.
In 2013, a woman touring the Titanic Belfast Museum was able to listen to the final distress call of the RMS Titanic. She described the events in a letter to podcasts hosts of Real Ghost Stories Online.com.She claimed, that while hearing the original Morse code and seeing the words on the screen of the RMS Titanic’s distress call, she became overwhelmingly emotional. Her heart was pounding, she was anxious and heartbroken– as if she was feeling everything the radio controller felt as he sent out the call. She was shaking, feeling sick to her stomach, and began crying.
She felt consumed by her empathy and needed air so she wandered down to the nearby dry docks still feeling overwhelmed. As she stood, thinking of the radio controller, the words playing over and over in her head, “sinking, sinking.” She felt a hand on her shoulder and a male voice said softly, “It’s okay.” She assumed it was her friend and reached up to brush his hand but realized no one was there. Was it the spirit of the radio controller, Jack Phillips she wonders? Was he reassuring her that he was at peace with what happened and she should be too? She felt a warmth and calm wash over her then but says the words of that distress call still haunt her today.
Ghost Hunters Captured Compelling Evidence At The Georgia Aquarium During Their 2009 Investigation The Georgia Aquarium is another located with possibly haunted artifacts from the Titanic. The employees have all caught glimpses of shadows, heard voices, and have even been touched by the spirits. The paranormal activity is so intense that Syfy Channel’s Ghost Hunters came in to investigate and had the same physical experiences as the staff. They managed to capture a voice, a shadowy figure, and also readings of cold spots. After reviewing their findings they concluded the Titanic exhibit at the Georgia Aquarium is in fact haunted.
Writer, researcher, and creator of UnsettlingThings. Favorite topics of exploration include the paranormal, fringe science, psychology, spirituality, folklore and history.
See author's posts
Leave a Reply Cancel reply
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.
- Cast & crew
- User reviews
The Titanic Museum
- Episode aired Nov 25, 2017
GAC investigate the massive Titanic Museum in Branson, Missouri where employees believe the spirits of the 1,496 people who lost their lives on board the Titanic on April 14, 1912, have foun... Read all GAC investigate the massive Titanic Museum in Branson, Missouri where employees believe the spirits of the 1,496 people who lost their lives on board the Titanic on April 14, 1912, have found their way to the museum dedicated to their memory. GAC investigate the massive Titanic Museum in Branson, Missouri where employees believe the spirits of the 1,496 people who lost their lives on board the Titanic on April 14, 1912, have found their way to the museum dedicated to their memory.
- Aaron Goodwin
- Billy Tolley
- 1 User review
- See more at IMDbPro
- Self - Lead Investigator
- Self - Investigator
- Self - AV Tech & Investigator
- Self - Tour Guide - Titanic Museum
- Self - Wealthiest Man
- Self - Wife of John Jacob Astor IV.
- Self - Musician
- All cast & crew
- Production, box office & more at IMDbPro
Did you know
- Trivia The Branson, Missouri Titanic Museum's main exterior visual feature is the partial mockup of the original ocean liner which consists of the front half of the ship, including its first two funnels.
User reviews 1
- Oct 29, 2018
- November 25, 2017 (United States)
- Branson, Missouri USA (Titanic Museum)
- MY Entertainment
- See more company credits at IMDbPro
- Runtime 42 minutes
Contribute to this page.
- IMDb Answers: Help fill gaps in our data
- Learn more about contributing
More to explore
Ghosts of the Abyss
- View history
Ghosts of the Abyss is a 2003 documentary film released by Walt Disney Pictures and Walden Media. It was Disney's first film produced in 3-D and was directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker James Cameron after his 1997 Oscar-winning film Titanic . During August and September 2001, Cameron and a group of scientists stage an expedition to the wreck of the RMS Titanic , and dive in Russian deep-submersibles to obtain more detailed images than anyone has before. With the help of two small, purpose-built remotely-operated vehicles, nicknamed "Jake" and "Elwood", the audience too can see inside the Titanic and with the help of CGI, audiences can view the ship's original appearance superimposed on the deep-dive images.
Also along for the ride Cameron invites friend and actor Bill Paxton who played Brock Lovett in the 1997 film. He narrates the event through his eyes. The film itself was premiered for IMAX 3D and was also nominated for a BFCA award for Best Documentary. The submersibles Mir 1 and Mir 2 carried the filming team on twelve dives.  The film is also known as Titanic 3D: Ghosts of the Abyss .
- 2.1 Home media
- 3 Soundtrack
- 4 References
Outline [ ]
Director James Cameron returns to the site of the 1912 wreck of the Titanic . With a team of history and marine experts and friend Bill Paxton , he embarks on an unscripted adventure back to the final grave where 1,496 people lost their lives in 1912. Using technology developed for this expedition, Cameron and his crew are able to explore virtually all of the wreckage, inside and out, as never before. This documentary was made for IMAX 3D Theatres and specially outfitted 35mm 3D theaters. Cameron and his team bring audiences to sights not seen since the sinking 91 years previously to the filming and explore why the vessel continues to intrigue and fascinate the public. 
While diving on September 11 th , 2001 to rescue one of the submersible robots from the reception room ; the filming crew upon returning to the surface hears about the [ attacks ] on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Afterward, they all compare and reflect on the tragedy of 9/11 with the tragedy of the Titanic . Ironically, James Cameron had taken a plaque down with him. It read:
The plaque was to be laid on Titanic the morning of September 11th, 2001. When they returned next to the ship following the 9/11 attacks the plaque was laid on Titanic 's stern.
Release [ ]
The film was screened out of competition at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival. 
Home media [ ]
The feature film on the DVD is 90 minutes long and is available in a 2-disc edition and as the 5th disc in the Titanic 5-Disc Deluxe Limited Edition .
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment released the film on on Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray and DVD on September 11, 2012.  
Soundtrack [ ]
The official soundtrack's songs were composed and conducted by Joel McNeely, and the orchestrations were conducted by David Brown, Marshall Bowen, and Frank Macchia. The album was also recorded and mixed by Rich Breen, edited by Craig Pettigrew, and mastered by Pat Sullivan. The album was ultimately produced by James Cameron , Randy Gerston and Joel McNeely and released by Disney's Hollywood Records label.
References [ ]
- ↑ "Ghosts of the Abyss - Box Office Data" . The Numbers . http://www.the-numbers.com/movies/2003/GABYS.php . Retrieved 7 August 2011 .
- ↑ 47218_GotAEGv15_A
- ↑ Anonymous Summary taken from IMDB
- ↑ "Festival de Cannes: Ghosts of the Abyss" . festival-cannes.com . http://www.festival-cannes.com/en/archives/ficheFilm/id/4086888/year/2003.html . Retrieved 2009-11-09 .
- ↑ http://www.stereoscopynews.com/hotnews/storage-a-support/3d-blu-ray/2209-ghost-of-the-abyss-3d-blu-ray.html
- ↑ http://www.thehdroom.com/news/James-Camerons-Ghosts-of-the-Abyss-Coming-to-Blu-ray-3D/10222
- 1 Mr. Calvert
- 2 Rose DeWitt Bukater
- 3 Heart of the Ocean
Ghostwalking in Titanic
Wandering room to room through the sunken wreck, the explorer and filmmaker finds himself at home among the spirits.
It had been five hours since my intrepid robot Gilligan left its garage on the front of the submersible Mir 1 and disappeared inside the cavernous shipwreck. Our sub was parked on the upper deck of the most famous wreck in history, surrounded by eternal blackness and over 5,000 pounds per square inch of pressure, both thanks to a two-and-a-half-mile column of water over our heads.
Safe inside the Mir , I flew the remotely operated vehicle (ROV) with gentle nudges of the joystick, its thrusters maneuvering it into the ship’s treacherous interior. The “bot” had penetrated to F Deck, paying out a thin fiber-optic cable like Theseus in the labyrinth, with only Ariadne’s twine to guide him back. Though the tiny vehicle was now seven decks below me, I felt as if my consciousness were inside the bot, its cameras my eyes, staring down the corridors of the ship. Its jeopardy was also mine, and my pulse raced with each new hazard. Turning a corner, I barely escaped being pinned by a falling “rusticle,” one of the stalactite-like formations created by the bacteria that are slowly devouring the steel of the ship.
As I passed through an entrance, suddenly revealed in my lights were sparkling reflections off a wall of gleaming blue and green tiles. Teak chaise lounges lay upturned on the floor, incredibly well preserved, and above them was an arabesque dome covered in gold leaf. I had entered the elegant spa on the most luxurious ship of its time. “Tell them we’re in the Turkish baths,” I said to Mike Arbuthnot, the marine archaeologist sitting next to me. He keyed the microphone and relayed the message up to the surface.
Our interior archaeological survey of the ship had begun in 1995, as I was wrapping up shooting the wreck for the movie Titanic. Back then we had an unwieldy ROV called Snoop Dog , which was little more than a movie prop, but we flew it down inside the ship’s grand staircase nevertheless, all the way down to D Deck. Its lights revealed that much of the ornate wood paneling remained intact. Snoop reached the end of its tether and could go no farther, but I could not help wondering what lay in the shadows just beyond its lights. After the movie was released, I commissioned the building of two revolutionary new robotic vehicles so we could return and truly explore the interior. In 2001 and again in 2005 I made multiple dives to the Titanic wreck and flew our bots deep inside, exhaustively surveying her interior. Ultimately we imaged and documented 65 percent of Titanic ’s surviving internal spaces, including the first-class cabins, first-class reception and dining rooms, steerage cabins and open space, cargo holds, and Marconi room.
One incredible discovery followed another, in dizzying succession. In the first-class dining saloon and reception rooms, we found the tall leaded windows still intact. The hand-carved mahogany paneling on the walls and columns remains, some of it with the original white paint still visible. There are cut crystal chandeliers and, in the first-class staterooms, immaculately preserved brass beds. Filigreed iron grilles cover the yawning elevator shafts. When I first laid eyes on the intact brass call button, I felt as if I could reach out and touch it, and a ghostly elevator might still arrive. Titanic sank on her maiden voyage before her interiors could be photographed, so most of the archival images used as references for the movie’s sets were photos of her sister ship, Olympic. For the first time we were learning how Titanic herself was actually built, and the details of her decoration have now been painstakingly reconstructed from the bot videos. I now know where the movie is accurate, and where it’s not.
Of all our discoveries, the most evocative are the relics that suggest the human hands that touched them. In Henry Harper’s D Deck cabin, his bowler hat remains in the ruins of his closet, right where he left it. In Edith Russell’s cabin on A Deck, the mirror still gleams in her washstand, reflecting back the bot’s LED lights instead of Edith’s terrified face as she rushed back into the room to get her lucky toy pig before running to board a lifeboat. In another stateroom, a glass decanter and water glass sit, impossibly, still on the washstand. Had the glass been empty, it would have floated out of its holder when the room flooded, and been lost. But someone took a drink and left it half full, and there it sits today.
In the soundproof Marconi room, the wireless apparatus survives, the knife switches still in the positions left by the young operators, Harold Bride and Jonathan Phillips, revealing that they cut the power when they abandoned their post as the water rushed up the deck outside. We even imaged the transformer they had repaired just the night before the sinking. Acting against guidelines, the two young wireless geeks managed to restore the set to full power—an act that may have saved 712 lives, since without this power they might not have reached the rescue ship Carpathia with their historic SOS. Capturing these precious bot images was like touching history itself.
In 2001 I had wanted to get into the C Deck suite of Ida and Isidor Straus, the elderly couple famous for choosing to die together rather than be separated by the evacuation rule of “women and children only.” Their suite was the most ornately decorated on the ship, and in fact had been the basis for Rose’s suite, the room in which Jack Dawson draws the heroine’s portrait in my fictional narrative. I got our stalwart bot Jake as far as the purser’s office, discovering the tall purser’s safe in the process, but I couldn’t penetrate to the Straus suite next door. In 2005, determined to find a way, I wriggled the slightly smaller Gilligan through a constriction, knocking rusticles out of the way, and emerged into an open space. The bot’s lights revealed gleaming gold sparkles. Not only was the ornate mahogany fireplace still intact, but sitting on it was the gold-plated clock, just as it appeared in the archival photo, and just as we had re-created it for the movie. It was a surreal moment, fiction and reality merging in the stygian depths.
After 33 dives to the wreck, averaging 14 hours each, I have spent more time on the ship than Captain Smith himself did. In all that exploration, the strongest memories are these out-of-body experiences of ghostwalking through the corridors and stairwells of Titanic via my ROV avatar. Its gothic ruin exists now in a ghostly limbo, neither in our world nor completely gone from it. The rusticles have transformed Edwardian elegance into a phantasmagorical cavern, a surreal underworld ruled only by dream logic. But despite the sheer alienness of the place, I felt a tingling déjà vu exploring there. Having walked the faithfully built movie set for many weeks, I would turn a corner in the wreck and already know, before the bot’s video camera revealed it, what would be there. It was an eerie feeling but also strangely comforting, as if I were somehow home.
Read This Next
- History & Culture
6 urgent questions on the missing Titanic submersible
- History Magazine
You know how it sank. How was the Titanic dreamed up?
She survived the titanic—and two other disasters at sea, despite the warning ‘iceberg, right ahead’ titanic was doomed.
- Wildlife Watch
History & Culture
- Mind, Body, Wonder
- Your US State Privacy Rights
- Interest-Based Ads
- About Nielsen Measurement
- Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information
- Nat Geo Home
- Attend a Live Event
- Book a Trip
- Inspire Your Kids
- Shop Nat Geo
- Visit the D.C. Museum
- Learn About Our Impact
- Support Our Mission
- Advertise With Us
- Customer Service
- Renew Subscription
- Manage Your Subscription
- Work at Nat Geo
- Sign Up for Our Newsletters
- Contribute to Protect the Planet
Copyright © 1996-2015 National Geographic Society Copyright © 2015-2023 National Geographic Partners, LLC. All rights reserved
- International edition
- Australia edition
- Europe edition
Ghosts of the Titanic review – conspiracy drama goes adrift
Park theatre, London Ron Hutchinson’s play picks up intriguing themes about fake news and psychology but fails to explore them in depth
“What if the Titanic never hit an iceberg? What if it sank for another reason?” asks a bereaved character whose fiance perished on the “ unsinkable ” luxury liner in 1912.
The what ifs in Ron Hutchinson’s drama explore the psychological effects of fake news spawned in the wake of the disaster, specifically the theory that the American financier JP Morgan orchestrated the sinking of the ship to kill off his enemies. It is a zany idea for a play, even if it lies on the outer realms of conspiracy theory.
Emma (Genevieve Gaunt), a young British woman mourning the loss of her beau, arrives in New York to unearth hidden facts herself and coincidentally meets a jaded newspaper hack, Molloy (John Hopkins). He promptly offers to help her in order to sell her story to the papers and early scenes alternate between their meeting and his exchanges with his editor (Lizzy McInnerny) who – again coincidentally – lost her own lover in the maritime disaster.
Under the direction of Eoin O’Callaghan, this set-up promises a corporate murder mystery as Emma and Molloy begin their investigations. A ship engineer (Fergal McElherron) speaks of structural failures in the Titanic’s design and warns: “Ask the wrong questions and you get a hatchet in the head.”
But as competent as the performances are, this play goes nowhere dramatically. Instead, it swims around in exposition, with flimsy, cliched characters and little beyond theories being spoken out loud. Its action – what little there is – feels static, almost sleepy, despite the colourful premise, and we can hear the creaks of its plot turns.
It is touching that Hutchinson dedicates the play to his grandfather, a shipfitter on the Titanic who died from injuries sustained in the shipyard. It is also ambitious in its intention to bring together the idea of fake news with psychoanalytic aspects of reality, fantasy and neurosis (Freud’s “new science” is briefly mentioned). But it does not succeed in exploring this ground with any depth or coherence, and it never becomes clear what it is ultimately trying to say.
Ghosts of the Titanic is at Park theatre, London , until 2 April.
- The Titanic