In the early hours of April 15, 1912, "The Unsinkable Ship" collided with an iceberg during its maiden voyage from England to New York City. When daily newspapers were delivered that morning, readers saw optimistic headlines about the misfortune that befell the RMS Titanic. "BIGGEST BOAT AFLOAT WRECKED; ALL ARE SAVED," one newspaper reported. "PASSENGERS FROM THE TITANIC RESCUED," stated another.
Reporters had received confused wireless telegraph reports that night from the distressed ship and other nearby oceanliners informing them "the ship is being towed to Halifax and everyone is ok." Thinking the telegram was about the Titanic, few newspapers reported the incident. At that point, it was a story about the unsinkable ship not sinking.
However, as the day progressed and the confusion passed, an increasingly tragic story of the Titanic began to unfold: the ship wasn't being towed to Halifax and not all the Titanic's passengers were aboard the Carpathia. On April 16, 1912, the New York Times's top story read, "TITANIC SINKS FOUR HOURS AFTER HITTING ICEBERG; 866 RESCUED BY CARPATHIA, PROBABLY 1250 PERISH." The disaster proved much worse than it first appeared.
The Evening World; New York, NY
The Daily Star-Mirror; Moscow, ID
Beaver Falls Tribune; Beaver Falls, PA
San Francisco Chronicle; San Francisco, CA