RMS Carpathia

RMS Carpathia

RMS "Carpathia" was a Cunard Line transatlantic passenger steamship built by Swan Hunter & Wigham Richardson. "Carpathia" began her maiden voyage in 1903 and became famous for rescuing the survivors of RMS "Titanic" after she sank on 15 April 1912.


The RMS "Carpathia" was built by Swan Hunter & Wigham Richardson at their Newcastle upon Tyne, England shipyard. She was launched on 6 August 1902 and began her sea trials on 22 April 1903 which ended on 25 April. "Carpathia" was 8,600 tons, convert|541|ft|m long (164 m) and 64.5 feet (18 m) in breadth.

"Carpathia" made her maiden voyage on 5 May 1903 from Liverpool, England to Boston, USA, and ran services between New York, Trieste, Rijeka and various Mediterranean ports.

"Titanic" disaster

"Carpathia" was sailing from New York City to Rijeka on the night of Sunday, 14 April 1912. Among her passengers were renowned American painters Colin Campbell Cooper and his wife Emma, journalist Lewis P. Skidmore, photographer Dr. Francis H. Blackmarr and Charles H. Marshall, whose three nieces were travelling aboard the "Titanic".

Her wireless operator, Harold Cottam, had missed previous messages from RMS "Titanic", being on the bridge at the time.Fact|date=July 2007 He received messages from Cape Race stating that they had private traffic for "Titanic". He thought he would be helpful and sent a message to the "Titanic" stating that Cape Race had traffic for them. In reply he received a distress signal. Cottam awakened Captain Arthur Henry Rostron who immediately set a course at maximum speed to "Titanic"'s last known position, approximately convert|58|mi|km away. Rostron ordered the ship's heating and hot water to be cut off, so the engines could feed on every ounce of steam. At 4 o'clock in the morning "Carpathia" arrived at the scene after working her way through dangerous ice fields. "Carpathia" was able to save 705 people. [http://www.titanicinquiry.org Titanic Inquiry Project"] Electronic copies of British and American inquiries into the disaster accessed 26 August 2006)]


For the rescue work, the crew of the "Carpathia" were awarded medals by the survivors. Crew members were awarded bronze medals, officers silver and Captain Rostron a silver cup and gold medal, presented by Molly Brown. Rostron was later a guest of President Taft at the White House and was presented with a Congressional Gold Medal, the highest honour the United States Congress could confer upon him.


"Carpathia" was part of a convoy when she was torpedoed on 17 July 1918 off the east coast of Ireland by the German submarine "U-55". The "Carpathia" listed to port and sank bow first. [http://www.greatships.net/carpathia.html R.M.S. Carpathia"] A detailed description of the ship; accessed 26 August 2007)] 157 passengers and the surviving crew were rescued by HMS "Snowdrop" the following day. The last sighting was at 02:45am, just as the stern section sank.

Finding and salvage works

On 9 September 1999 Reuters and AP wire services reported that Argosy International Ltd., headed by Graham Jessop, son of internationally known undersea explorer Keith Jessop, had found the wreck of the "Carpathia" on the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean earlier that week, about convert|185|mi|km off the southwestern English coast. "She is in reasonably good condition for a wreck of that age," Jessop said. "She is in one piece, and she is upright." [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/442370.stm UK Titanic rescue ship 'found'"] ]

The next year American author and diver Clive Cussler announced that his organization, NUMA, had found the wreck in the Spring of 2000, [http://www.numa.net/press/092200a.html Wreck of the Carpathia, Titanic's Rescuer, Found"] from www.numa.net; accessed 26 August 2007)] [http://www.titanic-titanic.com/carpathia_found.shtml DISCOVERY OF THE R.M.S. CARPATHIA"] from www.titanic-titanic.com; accessed 26 August 2007)] at a depth of convert|500|ft|m|abbr=on. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/6964318.stm Dive to film Titanic rescue ship"] from http://news.bbc.co.uk; accessed 26 August 2007)] After the submarine attack "Carpathia" rolled over and landed upright on the sea floor. The wreck currently lies upright off the coast of Ireland. [ [http://www.numa.net/press/092200b.html] ]

The current owner of the vessel is Premier Exhibitions Inc. (formerly RMS Titanic Inc.) who plans to recover objects from the wreck. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/6964318.stm Dive to film Titanic rescue ship"] from http://news.bbc.co.uk; accessed 26 August 2007)] The same company owns the salvor-in-possession rights of the RMS "Titanic" whose artifacts are shown in worldwide exhibitions.


Further reading

*Eaton, John P. and Haas, Charles A. "Titanic: Triumph and Tragedy" (2nd ed.) W. W. Norton & Company, 1995

External links

* [http://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/manifest.php?q=6 Carpathia: Passengers and Crew]
* [http://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/biography/2461/ Biography of Captain Rostron]
* [http://www.maritimequest.com/liners/carpathia/rms_carpathia.htm Maritimequest RMS Carpathia Photo Gallery]
* [http://www.sorbie.net/carpathia.htm RMS Carpathia at sorbie.net]
* [http://www.maritimequest.com/liners/carpathia_1903_marjory_champlin_bowen_collection_page_1.htm Carpathia 1907 photos by Marjorie Champlin Bowen]
* [http://news.bbc.co.uk/player/nol/newsid_7010000/newsid_7012800/7012899.stm?bw=bb&mp=rm&asb=1&news=1 BBC News video describing a diving exploration of the ship]

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