Court OKs Expedition to Retrieve Titanic’s Marconi Telegraph

The telegraph machine, invented by Italian pioneer Guglielmo Giovanni Marconi, could unlock the secrets of Titanic's final hours.

Explorers have been given permission to cut into the Titanic and remove its wireless Marconi telegraph, which the sinking ocean liner used to send out calls for help.

It would be the first such operation of its kind to be undertaken since the tragedy in 1912 that claimed the lives of more than 1,500 people.

The telegraph machine was one of the most powerful in the world, and it may unlock some of the secrets about an ice warning message and distress calls sent from the ship, The New York Times reports.

Because of a backlog of personal messages, the wireless operators aboard the Titanic — Jack Phillips and Harold Bride — likely missed warnings that could’ve helped the ship avoid the large iceberg that doomed its maiden voyage, according to The Washington Post.

Phillips drowned after refusing to leave his flooded post.

Despite opposition from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, a federal judge in Virginia approved the expedition on Monday, calling it “a unique opportunity to recover an artifact that will contribute to the legacy left by the indelible loss of the Titanic.”

The Italian radio pioneer and inventor 

Guglielmo Giovanni Marconi was an Italian inventor and electrical engineer, known for his pioneering work on long-distance radio transmission.

He is credited as the inventor of radio, and he shared the 1909 Nobel Prize in Physics with Karl Ferdinand Braun “in recognition of their contributions to the development of wireless telegraphy.”

The company behind the expedition, R.M.S. Titanic, say they may even be able to get the telegraph machine working again to gain a clearer picture of the ship’s final minutes as it sank nearly 400 miles off the shores of Newfoundland.

Guglielmo Giovanni Maria Marconi: Born April 25, 1874 in Bologna, Italy; Died July 20, 1937 in Rome, Italy.


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