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Rescued by Modern Technology

 by Steve Payne

Author says: what if lone radio operator Cyril Evans hadn't gone to sleep for the night of April 16th? Please note that the opinions expressed in this satirical post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).

April 16th 1912,

Please click to Digg our site.on-board the British Steamship SS Californian at a quarter after midnight, twenty-year old Cyril Furmstone Evans became the first wireless telegraphy operator in history to receive an SOS signal transmitted in Morse Code.

The distress call originated from the White Star Line passenger ship the RMS Titantic, which had struck an iceberg, tearing a gaping hole long enough to flood five of the water-tight compartments below the waterline. Despite the seeming wonders of modern technology, the stricken vessel was in fact so close that officers of the Californian could see the lights on-board the ship.

Evans had also reported three large icebergs fifteen miles (24 km) north of the course the Titanic was heading. But he was rudely rebuffed by the wireless operator of the Titanic, Jack Phillips, who was sending private messages to the wireless relay station at Cape Race. And Captain Edward J. Smith was so eager to make the maiden crossing in record time that he was sailing at 22 knots in the iceberg-strewn seas off the Newfoundland coast.

Fortunately for the White Star Line, the close proximity of the two ships enabled a successful rescue mission to be mounted. Later it emerged that the Titanic was only carrying enough lifeboards for less than half the passengers. And so most contemporary observers simply noted further evidence of mankind's growing supremacy in the eternal struggle with the forces of nature.


Author says to view guest historian's comments on this post please visit the Today in Alternate History web site.

Steve Payne, Editor of Today in Alternate History, a Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today. Follow us on Facebook, Myspace and Twitter.

Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting fictional blog.


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