Only 88 people survived the sinking of the SS Arctic on September 27,
1854, out of more than 400 on board. The paddle steamer SS Arctic
(pictured), bound for New York, sank off the coast of Newfoundland. When
Captain Luce ordered the lifeboats launched, a breakdown in discipline
saw the boats swamped by members of the crew and the more able-bodied
male passengers; most of the rest went down with the ship, four hours
after the collision. All the women and children on board perished. Two
of the six lifeboats launched from Arctic reached Newfoundland, and
another was picked up by a passing steamer, which also rescued a few
survivors from improvised rafts. Among these was Luce, who had regained
the surface after initially going down with the ship. The other three
lifeboats disappeared without trace. News of Arctic's loss did not reach
New York until two weeks after the sinking, when public sorrow quickly
turned to anger at the perceived cowardice of the crew. There was no
investigation into the disaster, and no one was held legally
responsible. Luce, who was generally exonerated from blame, retired from
the sea; some of the surviving crew chose not to return to the US.
Read more: <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Arctic_disaster>
Today's selected anniversaries:
1605 Polish–Swedish War: The Battle of Kircholm ended in the decisive
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greatest triumphs of Commonwealth cavalry.
Locomotion No. 1 hauled the train on the opening day of the
Stockton and Darlington Railway, the first public railway to use steam
Lij Iyasu, the emperor-designate of Ethiopia, was deposed in
favor of his aunt, Zewditu.
The British Aircraft Corporation TSR-2, an advanced Cold War
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NASA launched the Dawn probe (mission patch pictured), its
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Wiktionary's word of the day:
The big toe.
Wikiquote quote of the day:
The truth is, all might be free if they valued freedom, and
defended it as they ought.