On Monday, April 15, 1912, the front page headline of the The New York Times read: “New Liner Titanic Hits an Iceberg; Sinking by the Bow at Midnight; Women Put Off in Life Boats; Last Wireless at 12:27 A.M. Blurred.”
Late in the evening of April 14, 1912, the Titanic–ship of movie fame and book lore–struck the infamous iceberg and began to sink, eventually going under in the early morning hours of April 15. The “unsinkable ship” had sunk. Only slightly more than 700 of those who had been on board were rescued from lifeboats. The rest, approximately 1,500 passengers and crew, were lost. In the 100 years since, countless books, articles, documentaries, and websites have been written or filmed about the tragedy.
To learn more, search the Library’s online catalog. A subject browse on the keyword Titanic leads to books such as Shadow of the Titanic: the Extraordinary Stories of Those Who Survived, in the Browsing Books collection, call number G530 .T6 W56 2012, and The discovery of the Titanic, in the Main Collection, call number G530 .T6 B49 1995.
For newspaper accounts in the days following the sinking, try searching in the library databases ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2008) or ProQuest Historical Newspapers: Chicago Tribune (1849-1988). Limit your search by date. For magazine articles from that time period, search Readers’ Guide Retrospective (1890-1982).
Also, if you missed the Academy-award winning movie, Titanic, when it was released in 1997, you have a second chance. It was re-released this month and is in theatres now. The movie storyline is fiction (and whoever wrote the dialogue shouldn’t quit their day job), but the scenes of the ship breaking apart and going down are quite striking. The movie is also available in the Feature Films section of the Browsing DVD collection.
Need help finding information? Ask a reference librarian.