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Carpathia

Carpathia

Carpathia crew members lower lifeboats from the Titanic into the White Star Lines New York berth, on the evening of April 18, 1912.

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As Carpathia surged ahead on her urgent mission, the rest of the crew went about fulfilling Captain Rostrons meticulous series of orders, and the ship was fully prepared to his satisfaction within two hours. Still on the bridge, he continued to guild his little ship Northward through an ever growing ice field, dodging burgs and growlers that, despite the posting of additional lookouts in the eyes of the ship, were mostly spotted first, from the bridge. Throughout this daring dash, he never slackened his speed, and the helm responded beautifully, as she swung left and right around the numerous iceburgs she encountered. The bed plates in the engine room rattled from the vibration, and the ships aging joints groaned with the strain, but her nine year old engines seemed to be well up to the task they were now undertaking. At about 3:30am, Rostron spotted his first possible light of the night, leading him to believed the Titanic may still be afloat. Therefore, he ordered Cunard Roman Candles to be fired from the ships' bow to signal their approach. Thirty minutes later he came to a stop, and his heart sank, as he realized they had arrived to late. But lifeboats in the vicinity began signaling with anything they could find to produce a light. As the morning sun began to break over the horizon, Rostron could see that there were 20 boats in all, at varing distances from the Carpathia. Most of them had turned and were now heading in her direction.



Carpathia began taking on survivors of the North Atlantics' worst peacetime marine disaster, at just after four in the morning on April 15th, 1912. She would take on a total of 706 survivors in all, most of them women and children. In addition, Carpathia also took on 13 of Titanic's 20 lifeboats. Rostron then slowly steamed around the area looking for any possible survivors in the water. He found none. After a short service of Thanksgiving for survivors of the tragedy, Rostron decide to return to New York with everyone he had rescued, and just before their departure from the area, the Leyland Liner Californian arrived on the scene. Rostron requested that her Captain, Stanley Lord, remain in the area, and conduct a more through search for anyone still left in the water. Carpathia then headed back toward New York. Rostron briefly stopped the ship around noon, to hold a funeral service for 4 people who had died in some of the lifeboats during the night, their remains were committed to the deep. Carpathia reached New York on the rain soaked evening of April 18th, and Rostron and his crew began to get an idea of the amount of intense interest surrounding the events of the previous days. Never before had so many people gathered at various vantage points along the New York waterfront, to witness the arrival of a single ship.
 

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