As the 100th anniversary of Titanic’s sinking approaches this weekend, and with James Cameron’s epic film back in cinemas (this time in 3D), let’s see some interesting facts that you probably didn’t know about the infamous liner.
1. Sea swimming
Titanic had a swimming pool on board – filled with seawater!
2. Fitness first
It also boasted a state-of-the-art gymnasium for its time, with rowing machines and exercise bikes, which were sold as being ‘good for the liver’.
3. Doctor’s orders
In its hold there was a consignment of opium – transported for medicinal purposes only.
4. Heart of darkness
The ‘Heart of the Ocean’ necklace worn by Kate Winslet’s character was based on a true story. A blue diamond necklace was given to Kate Florence Phillips by her married lover, Samuel Morley. The pair were heading to the US to start a new life, but Morley, like Jack, died in the sinking.
5. Dogs on board
There were five pet dogs on Titanic – only two survived.
6. A Turkish delight
Titanic boasted an ornately decorated Turkish Steam Room. Among its feature was an electric bath, in which the bather laid down in an insulated box that enclosed them from the neck down. A number of electric lamps then shone heat on him and her. It didn’t prove very popular.
7. Class act
In steerage, third-class female passengers were ordered off decks at 9pm to avoid any impropriety, and it was ‘lights out’ for men and women at 10.30pm, whereas in first and second class the lights in certain public rooms were kept on until 11.30pm.
8. Icy waters
There is convincing evidence that Titanic saw many icebergs before it struck the fateful one.
9. Dummy funnel
One of the Titanic’s four funnels was a ‘dummy’, put there to preserve the ship’s stylish look and symmetry. When the ship docked at Queenstown one of the stokers reportedly climbed the inside of the funnel and poked his blackened face from the top, reportedly scaring many of the women on deck.
10. Card sharps
There were reported to be several con men and card sharps on Titanic seeking to fleece richer passengers of their cash. However, games of chance were not allowed in any of the public rooms anywhere on the ship on a Sunday.