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The Building Of The Titanic Essay

1456 words - 6 pages

The Building of the TitanicThe Titanic was a passenger ship that made its first voyage in 1912. This would also be its last voyage. It was designed to be one of the biggest and grandest ships of all time. Many people deemed the ship unsinkable. Most people know about the devastating disaster that this famous ship encountered. Few people know about the background and building of the huge vessel.The Titanic began as an idea conceived at a dinner party. In 1907 a dinner party was held at Lord Pirrie's large Victorian mansion situated in the heart of Belgrade square in London (McCluskie).He was the chairman of Harland & Wolff shipbuilders. Also in attendance at this dinner party was the director of the Whitestar lines. This was a company who owned and operated many cruise ships. After the dinner party the men retired to the parlor where they came up with plans to build three huge and elaborate passenger ships. The first would be the Olympic, second the Titanic, and third the Gigantic (Brewster).The plan for the Titanic was for it to be the largest and most luxurious ship to ever be built. The Titanic was 882.5 ft. long. That is the length of 4 city blocks. The ships width of 92.5 feet was that equivalent to a four lane highway. The vessel had nine decks which made it as tall as an 11 story building. It weighed 53,000 tons. The total construction cost was 7.5 million dollars. At today's money value that would be 123 million dollars (Eaton). This project was funded by the wealthy American who owned White Star Lines. His name was J. P. Morgan.The building of the Titanic took place at one of the largest shipyards in the world, Harland and Wolfe, in Belfast, Ireland. To take on the task of constructing such massive ships, the yards slips had to be modified. Three of the old slips would be widened and raised to 220 feet high. This would allow a place to construct two of the three ships. It took 15,000 Irish shipyard workers to build the two ships. They were paid ten dollars per week. This was a good average wage of the times (Brewster).The Titanic's hull was made of 1 inch steal plates that overlapped each other. They were held together by more than 3 million rivets. The rivets were 3 inches long and 1 inch thick. A worker called a "heater boy" would heat a rivet until it was red hot. He would then throw it to the "catch boy" who caught it in a wooded bowl and placed it into a hole in the hull with a pair of tongs. While the "holder up" held a mallet over the rivets head on the out side of the hull, the "basher" on the inside of the hull would bash the rivets end into place. The steel hull weighted twenty-six thousand pounds (Stephens).As a safety feature, the ship was to be built with a double bottom. The bottom was then divided into sixteen water tight compartments. This was designed to allow the ship to stay afloat with any two of the middle compartments, or four of the first compartments, flooded. It was thought that even the worst collision would...

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