Is the Titanic still afloat? Some science sharps say so, and others aver “nix!”
Washington DC, May 2, 1912
Is the Titanic still floating? Will she continue to float forever, or as long as the world spins? If she isn’t, where is she now? On the bottom of the sea just under where she disappeared, or on the bottom of the sea someplace else?
Nobody knows. Even the government scientific sharps, the wise guys of the Smithsonian Institute, can’t answer these questions positively.
Some think that she lies on the bottom of the ocean just under where she sank. They say that, sinking as she did at an angle of from 45 to 60 degrees, she would zigzag to the bottom, first shooting one way and then the other. Only they don’t say it quite that way. In order to make what they say as unintelligible as possible to ordinary folks, they say it this way:
“Her path would describe an arc of a great circle, whose limit would be reached at a point tangent to a line parallel to the sea level — ” and so on through a lot more such highbrow stuff.
Is the Titanic still floating?
Along comes another scientific sharp who denies that she lies there. He says that the gulf stream and the Arctic current, which both flow there, the first above the other, would both have a whack at the Titanic before she got to the bottom and would carry her nobody knows where, but anyhow a long way from the place she disappeared.
Most people may think from all this that she is at least two miles from there anyhow, since the ocean thereabouts is two miles deep.
“No such thing,” says another scientific sharp. Not even lead will sink to the bottom of water that deep, he says. It will go down till the weight of the water exerts such an enormous pressure that it can’t sink any further. There it will hang suspended in the water as long as the world wags.
And there, according to this theory, hangs the hulk of the Titanic today, halfway between the bottom of the ocean and sea level.
Science,” says Webster’s dictionary, “is exact and comprehensive information; that which is known; knowledge duly arranged.” Hurray!
If the Titanic isn’t still floating, how did the ship sink?
Image: Cross section of ocean illustrating both theories, but not accurate in proportions of course.