mercantile marine

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Did the Titanic really sink?

Peashooter has heard of a lot of weird conspiracy theories when it comes to history, but this one is quite outlandish. Not neccessarily as crazy as the phantom time hypothesis, but certainly a doosie.

Did the Titanic really sink? Was the “sinking” of the Titanic an elaborate scheme by J.P. Morgan to collect a handsome insurance payout? According to an investigator named Robin Gardiner, all of this is true, and is detailed in his book, “Titanic; The Ship That Never Sank”.  The story of the Titanics non-sinking begins with the Olympic, the Titanic’s older sister ship which made its maiden voyage in October of 1910.  In 1911 the Olympic was involved in an accident with a British Navy warship. The collision resulted in no deaths or injuries, but the Olympic sustained heavy damage.  At the time the White Star Line was owned by J.P. Morgan through the International Mercantile Marine Group.  According to Gardiner, Morgan concocted a grand scheme to switch the Olympic with the Titantic on her maiden voyage, superficially patching the hull and disguising the ship as the Titanic.  Then, in the middle of the voyage, the ship would be purposely sunk so that Morgan could collect a nice insurance payment. Others have taken this theory further, claiming that Morgan had the ship purposely sunk in order to kill John Jacob Aster, Benjamin Guggenheim, Isador Strauss, and George Duntan Widener, all rich American financiers and businessmen who opposed Morgan’s idea to create the Federal Reserve. As for the Titanic, Gardiner claims it took the place of the Olympic, serving until it was decomissioned and scrapped in 1935. Gardiner cites as evidence the following;

-Minute differences in the spacing of windows and number of portholes between the Olympic and Titanic.
-The Olympic was left with a 2 degree list to port.  Supposely the Titanic listed on its doomed voyage.
-The cancelation of  tickets of several prominant figures, such as Henry Frick and G.W. Vanderbilt, supposedly they were tipped off as to what was going to happen.
-Supposedly the letters “MP” can be seen on the wreck of the Titanic under a section of faded paint, part of the name “OLYMPIC”.
-Supposedly there is exposed grey paint on the wreck, the Olympic had grey paint, the Titanic had an undercoating of black paint.

While Gardiner’s ideas and evidence might seem compelling, his conspiracy theory runs into several major problems;

-Critics say that the differences in portholes between the Titanic and Olympic are overexaggerated by Gardiner and his supporters.
-There are permanant structural differences between the Olympic and Titanic that could not have been changed and are apparent in photographs of the Titanic at the time it embarked from Liverpool.
-What money Morgan recieved from the insurance payout would have surely been lost with White Star Line’s tarnished reputation due to the sinking.
-The loss of Olympic would have been a mere drop in the bucket for Morgan, who was the equivlant of a billionaire at the time.
-Titanic’s ID number 401 is marked all over the wreckage of the ship, including parts of the hull, the turbine propeller, parts of the engines.  In addition, all White Star Line property is marked with 401, including silverware, china, plates, tools, lifejackets, and thousands of other common objects.
-The Olympic’s ID number can be found nowhere on or in the wreck.
-The Olympic continued to serve as a passenger liner, and during World War I, a troop ship.  No one ever noticed that it was a “disguised Titanc”.

Regardless of the evidence or lack thereof, Gardiner’s theory is interesting and brings up some important questions. What if it’s all true? What if the Olympic was really switched with the Titanic? What if J.P. Morgan was secretly plotting for a nice cash payout and to kill off his enemies? What if Peashooter could shove an entire grapefruit up his bum?