It was just before noon on April 10th 1912 when the good ship Titanic left the port of Southampton England bound for Cherbourg France, Queenstown Ireland and then across the Atlantic to New York City.
She was the grandest of ladies, the largest cruise ship ever built. She carried the wealthiest of the world and she was unsinkable.
Unsinkable Molly Brown.
As the Titanic was making her way east across the Atlantic, the Red Sox were making their way south on a train bound for New York where they were slated to open the 1912 season at Hilltop Park against the New York Highlanders.
And as the Red Sox and Titanic were traveling into history, the Boston Post was informing all that Teddy Roosevelt “Buried” President Taft in the Illinois primary, Francis Bartlett donated $1,500,000.00 to the Museum of Fine Arts and the Socialist Labor Party had nominated a Boston tailor, Arthur Hellmar to run for president of the United States at the top of their ticket.
The Red Sox swept the three game series in New York to start the season 3-0 and the 14th of April was a travel day. They were headed further south to Philadelphia to play the Athletics for two games before making their way back to Boston where they would open Fenway Park and the 1912 season against New York.
The Red Sox first loss of 1912 came at Shibe Park.
The Red Sox were settled in, well maybe, in the City of Brotherly Love as they prepared to take on the A’s. It was 20 minutes to midnight on April 14th, as the 2,224 passengers of the Titanic settled in for their fourth night at sea.
The Titanic encountered a force in the North Atlantic leaving damage which breached five of her compartments below the waterline.
At 2:20 AM April 15, 1912, only two hours and forty minutes after striking the iceberg, the Titanic was resting at the bottom of the ocean, 12,415 feet below the surface and 1,514 people were dead.
Reports of the disaster began to trickle in to the northeastern newspapers as the Red Sox were absorbing their first loss of the season 4-1 in Philadelphia. The following day those same newspapers screamed the horror of the unthinkable!
The Red Sox righted their ship on the 16th with a 9-2 win and they headed north to Boston to open their new ball park.
The Titanic deflected the attention of the opening of the brand new Fenway Park and the tragedy was on the front page of the Boston Post and virtually every newspaper for the rest of the month. The Post carried a front page story every day until the first of May and for a week the first dozen or so pages were devoted to stories of this greatest sea disaster in history.
Fenway Park and the Titanic will forever be linked. It is estimated that approximately 75,000 people in the United States today are 100 or more years old. Those who possess a living memory of these events of 1912 is considerably less in number to be sure and as we celebrate Fenway Park’s 100th birthday we will do well to recollect the story of the Titanic and its invaluable lesson; even the unsinkables go down!
Oh and last night the Red Sox captured their first win of Fenway Park’s centennial. They scored three in the ninth to grab a 4-2 win in Toronto. They now stand at 1-3 tied for last place in the AL East, 2 1/2 games out! On this date in 1912 they were 0-0, a day away from opening.
Dustin Pedroia homered last night and he doubled leading off the ninth and scored to tie the score.
And so it is and so it was on this date in Fenway Park history, April 10, 1912, April 10, 2012.