Headlines: Both Informative and Inaccurate Reporting
Even the technological advances of the telegraph and photograph—both of which gave a compelling immediacy to the Titanic tragedy—could not prevent the publication of a fair number of glaringly inaccurate reports regarding the events of the night of April 14, 1912.
Most of these early dispatches betrayed a touching optimism regarding the status of the stricken ocean liner. Any lingering doubts as to the Titanic's condition reported in the articles of April 15 were usually resolved by April 16.
Virginia newspapers had their fair share of speculative reporting, but national and international titles were also plagued by a number of inaccurate news reports that created much early confusion and even led readers to believe the Titanic was safely afloat, perhaps even unharmed.
The world's newspapers reacted to the sinking of the Titanic with a flurry of reports, stories, special sections, photographs, editorials, and banner headlines. The following images highlight the strength of the reporting available in American newspapers. Particularly notable among the Virginia titles is the Times-Dispatch of Richmond, which did an excellent job of reporting every facet of the tragedy from the sinking to the inquiry in the U.S. Senate.