Titanic: Ship Facts

Titanic image courtesy of the National Museums Northern Ireland Collection


Think you know everything about the Titanic?

Check out these 70 great ship facts!

Construction and Build Facts
Titanic Launch Facts
Ship Facts
Titanic Engineer Facts
The Titanic Disaster Facts




 

Construction and Build Facts

  1. Construction of Titanic began on 31 March 1909, when her keel was laid
  2. Titanic and her sister ships were commissioned by White Star but built by Harland and Wolff
  3. Titanic’s yard number was 401. She was built on Slipway No 3 under the Arrol Gantry
  4. Her sister ship, RMS Olympic was already three months into her build on the slipway beside Titanic
  5. The two ships were built under a huge structure called the Arroll Gantry (PIC)
  6. A keel laying ceremony was important to the builders because Harland and Wolff would receive the first payment from White Star
  7. All the steel used in Titanic’s hull had to be imported
  8. Once the keel was fully laid, a rib-like structure was built
  9. Steel plates were riveted onto the ribs of the ship which formed the frame of the hull
  10. Many riveters ended up with hearing problems in later life because of the noise they endured while driving home rivets
  11. Heater boys were employed to heat up the rivets on coke furnaces to make them easier to work with
  12. The Titanic’s keel was laid on March 1909
  13. Titanic was fully framed by April 1910
  14. All the steel plates were in place by October of the same year.Over three million rivets were used in Titanic’s hull
  15. Around the same time, Harland and Wolff had seen demonstrations of a new form of ship construction called welding
  16. During the ship’s construction, a dry dock was being built about a mile away, big enough to dock the Olympic class liners
  17. The Harbour board also started work to deepen the channel in front of the slipways by 32 feet
  18. In 1912, skilled shipyard workers who built Titanic earned £2 per week. Unskilled workers earned £1 or less per week
  19. Seventeen men died during the construction of Olympic and Titanic including a father and son
  20. Heavier items such as the funnels were lifted on board Titanic using a crane capable of lifting 200 tons to a height of nearly 150 feet
  21. Titanic stayed at the fitting out wharf for ten months
  22. The cost to build Titanic in 1912 was $7.5million. The cost today is $400million
  23. The fitting out wharf is still used today by Harland and Wolff, as their ship repair division
  24. Titanic entered the dry dock in February 1912 to have her propellers fitted and her hull painted
  25. The dry dock could hold 21 million gallons of water and was controlled by steam pumps
  26. The pumps could empty the dock in just over an hour and a half
  27. The Thompson dry dock took seven years to build and replaced the Alexandra Dock
  28. The third ship in the line, Britanic was completed in 1914. She served as a hospital ship in World War One
  29. Britannic hit a mine in the Aegean Sea and sank

Titanic Launch Facts

  1. RMS Olympic was launched in October 1910, less than two years after she was started
  2. Titanic was launched on 31 May 1911
  3. In July 1911, Harland and Wolff and White Star Line set the date on which the Titanic would begin her maiden voyage - 20 March 1912. However, the Olympic collided with Royal Navy Cruiser HMS Hawke and was brought back to Belfast. This accident delayed the Titanic’s maiden voyage
  4. It was announced in the London Times that the Titanic Maiden Voyage would be the 10 April 1912
  5. White Star line did not 'christen' their ships with a naming ceremony and champagne
  6. On the same day, Olympic was handed over to her new owners and sailed to Liverpool
  7. The day was also the birthday of Lord Pirrie, the chairman of Harland and Wolff and his wife, Lady Margaret Pirrie
  8. A celebration dinner was held for Harland and Wolff and White Star bosses following the launch
  9. The press who were covering the launch were taken to lunch at Belfast’s Grand Central Hotel
  10. A shipwright called James Dobbin was injured during the launch when his legs were trapped under the ship. He died in hospital the next day
  11. Over one hundred thousand people watched the launch, some paying a small admission charge which was donated to Belfast hospitals
  12. Titanic took just 62 seconds to make her journey down Slipway number 2 into the water
  13. Slipway 2 measures 772 feet long (235.3 metres, 257.3 yards)
  14. At Titanic’s launch, Thomas Andrews’ 5 year old nephew, John, was allowed to knock away one of the small wedges which held her in place
  15. Once launched, Titanic was towed by five tugs to the deep water fitting out wharf. Four of these tugs came from the Alexandra Towing Company in Liverpool

Ship Facts

  1. Titanic was 882ft 9in in length, 92 ft in width, 175 ft in height and it weighed 46,328 tonnes
  2. RMS stands for Royal Mail Steamer
  3. Titanic had two reciprocating engines, each turning a propeller on the wing of the ship
  4. The third engine, a steam turbine, turned the central propeller
  5. At the wharf, her boilers, funnels and other machinery were added. The state rooms and cabins were also fitted out
  6. There were only 3 funnels operational on the Titanic. The fourth funnel was a dummy. The funnels towered 81 ½ ft above the boat deck
  7. The fitting out process adhered to a builder’s specification book which had been agreed between the shipyard and White Star
  8. Titanic was fitted with enough lifeboats to meet Board of Trade regulations. Unfortunately, these regulations had not been updated as ships became larger
  9. Her sea trials were conducted on 2 April 1912, having been delayed for 24 hours because of the weather
  10. The trials were the first time the engines were tested and the ship briefly reached a speed of nearly 21 knots

Titanic Engineer Facts

  1. The chief naval architect on Titanic was Thomas Andrews Junior, who succeeded Alexander Carlisle in 1910
  2. Both Carlisle and Andrews were related to the chairman, Lord Pirrie. Carlisle was his brother in law, Andrews was his nephew
  3. Any modifications to the design had to be discussed at a meeting of department heads at Harland and Wolff

The Titanic Disaster Facts

  1. Between November 1911and April 1912, 20 other boats had sunk off the shores of Newfoundland
  2. Titanic left Belfast on 2 April 1912
  3. Titanic departed Southampton on 10 April 1912
  4. On 13 April, Captain Smith received a message from the Baltic warning of large amounts of icebergs
  5. An iceberg was reported 'dead ahead' at 11.40pm on the 14 April 1912
  6. The Titanic sank at 2.20am on Monday 15 April – 2 hours and 40mins after hitting the iceberg
  7. There were over 250 passenger telegrams sent and received during the voyage
  8. Many of the lifeboats were launched less than half full
  9. The Carpathia came to the rescue of the Titanic passengers in lifeboats. It was too late to save those left on the ship
  10. On 18 April the Carpathia arrived in New York and the Titanic survivors disembarked
  11. There were 2,228 people on board. 1,343 were passengers and 885 were crew members
  12. The SS Nomadic carried some of Titanic’s richest passengers including John Jacob Astor, Benjamin Guggenheim and Molly Brown
  13. Dr Robert Ballard of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute found the wreck in September 1985
  14. The Titanic lies approx 12,460ft at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean (approx 2.5 miles)

     

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User Comments 173

it helped me on my homework so thank you for the facts ! it helped me a lot .
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fuk you 07 March 2013
I LOVED IT BUT IT IS VARY SAD THAT PEPEL DIDE
TARA 07 March 2013
thank you! this was helpful
Hellen G 01 March 2013
Good facts.
Haleema 28 February 2013
thanks for the good facts they helped me alot
katie 28 February 2013
While I know the width, height and length of the Titanic it was still a bit difficult to imagine it. I hit upon how to fit my head around thing by using my neighborhood. The width of lots are 70 feet and the depth is 110 feet. Now I have a better idea of dimensions.
Phillip LaFollette 27 February 2013
thanks these facts are grat for my projest
tatumn 21 February 2013
kool i learned alot
alexis 21 February 2013
great facts
I'm Not Telling You 13 February 2013
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Ajaykumar C B 11 February 2013
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Titanic Boat Tours

Titanic Boat Tours

See the famous Harland & Wolff Shipyard and Titanic sites around Belfast's harbour

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Titanic Trail Cobh

Titanic Trail Cobh

Explore Cork Harbour, the last port of call of the Titanic in 1912

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