The Titanic Timeline still continues to expand.
With the clear understanding that Titanic never completed a single voyage, one would rightly imagine that a timeline of her life and legacy would be incredibly short. Yet here we are over a century of researching and examining this tale that continues to engage historians, students and enthusiasts alike.
Below is a timeline of the key events related to Titanic which goes well beyond her three-day lifespan as an operational ocean liner.
A Complete Titanic TEACHING UNIT
Titanic Timeline of Key Events
March 31, 1909 Construction of the Titanic begins with building the keel, the backbone of the ship, at Harland & Wolff’s shipyard in Belfast, Ireland.
May 31, 1911, The unfinished Titanic is lathered up with soap and pushed into the water for “fitting out.” Fitting out is installing all the extras, some on the exterior, like the smokestacks and the propellers, and a lot on the inside, like the electrical systems, wall coverings, and furniture.
June 14, 1911, The RMS Olympic departs on its maiden voyage.
April 2, 1912, The Titanic leaves the dock for sea trials, including tests of speed, turns, and an emergency stop. At about 8 p.m., after the sea trials, the Titanic heads to Southampton, England.
April 3-10, 1912 The Titanic is loaded with supplies and her crew is hired.
April 10, 1912, From 9:30 a.m. until 11:30 a.m., passengers board the ship. Then at noon, the Titanic leaves the dock for its maiden voyage. The first stop is in Cherbourg, France, where the Titanic arrives at 6:30 p.m. and leaves at 8:10 p.m, heading to Queenstown, Ireland (now known as Cobh).
April 11, 1912, At 1:30 p.m., the Titanic leaves Queenstown and heads across the Atlantic for New York.
April 12-13, 1912 The Titanic continues on her journey as passengers enjoy life on the luxurious ship.
April 14, 1912 (9:20 p.m.) Captain Smith retires to his room.
April 14, 1912 (9:40 p.m.) The last of several warnings about icebergs is received in the wireless room. This warning never makes it to the bridge.
April 14, 1912 (11:40 p.m.) The lookouts spot an iceberg directly in the path of the Titanic. First Officer Murdoch orders hard starboard (left) turn, but the Titanic’s right side still scrapes the iceberg. Only 37 seconds passed between the sighting of the iceberg and hitting it.
April 15, 1912 (12:05 a.m.) Captain Smith orders the crew to prepare the lifeboats and get the passengers and crew up on deck.
April 15, 1912 (12:45 a.m.) The first lifeboat is lowered into the freezing water.
April 15, 1912 (2:18 a.m.) The Titanic snaps in half.
April 15, 1912 (2:20 a.m.) The Titanic sinks.
April 15, 1912 (4:10 a.m.) The Carpathia picks up the first of the survivors.
April 15, 1912 (8:30 a.m.) The Carpathia picks up survivors from the last lifeboat.
April 17, 1912, The Mackay-Bennett is the first of several ships to travel to the Titanic sank area to search for bodies.
April 18, 1912, The Carpathia arrives in New York with 705 survivors.
April 19 – May 25, 1912, The United States Senate holds hearings about the disaster.
May 2 – July 3, 1912, The British hold an inquiry about the Titanic disaster.
September 1, 1985, Robert Ballard’s expedition team discovers the wreck of the Titanic.
December 17, 1997, James Cameron releases the motion picture Titanic which reignites the global obsession with Titanic and is the highest-grossing film in history at the time.