April 16, 1912: Extent of Titanic disaster becomes known

Just before midnight on April 14, 1912, the liner Titanic — the world’s largest steamship at that time — struck an iceberg and began to sink.

The next morning, The Herald published what the world thought they knew about the accident: “TITANIC HITS ICEBERG—IS SINKING—PASSENGERS SAFE”

It said that all passengers aboard the “World’s Greatest Ship” had been safely transferred to responding vessels.

“Vice President Franklin said at 4 o’clock today he has definite information that all passengers have been transferred from the Titanic,” an article on the page states.

The extent of the disaster didn’t become known until the next day: “1,350 GO DOWN WITH TITANIC”

The story reads:

“People in Paris and London went to bed last night in the belief that all passengers on board the Titanic were saved. This morning brought the appalling truth.”

“… favorable details are insignificant compared with the fact that the Titanic is at the bottom of the Atlantic and that the shattered wreck took with her about 1,350 victims to death.”

That day, The Herald also published names of “some of the survivors of the Titanic” and “Prominent Men Believed to Have Perished on the Titanic.”

The rescuing steamer Carpathia carried all 668 survivors, a large majority were women and children.

To read more, take a look at The Herald’s front page from April 15, 1912 and April 16, 1912 in our collect of historic editions.

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