Posts Tagged With: Titanic

Titanic photo shows rare glimpse of burial at sea…..

A rare, dark glimpse of the days that followed the sinking of the Titanic is being sold off by an English auction house later this month.
Henry Aldridge and Son is selling a photograph of a burial at sea, believed to be on board the Mackay-Bennett. The cable ship based out of Halifax was the first to search for bodies after the Titanic sank on April 15, 1912.
“It’s pretty much an unwritten rule that no one went on the Mackay-Bennett with a camera for obvious reasons,” said Andrew Aldridge, of the auction house.
“In the grand scheme of things, it’s a very valuable photograph. We’re estimating £3,000 [$5,000] to £5,000 [$8,350] pounds, which for a photograph is a lot of money. However, it is an incredibly rare image.”
Aldridge said the photographer likely had to be discreet, which would have been difficult considering the size of cameras at the time.
“It shows us the horrific conditions aboard that ship. You had people being buried at sea. You look at that image, and you can see the bodies are stacked between two and three high.”
Aldridge said another remarkable feature of the photograph is that historians are certain they can pinpoint the day it was taken.
“In the foreground, there is a body with a small canvas bag attached to it with the number 177 stencilled on it. That was to a gentleman called William Mayo, and we know William Mayo was buried at sea on the 24th of April, 1912,” he said.
The photograph will be sold during a sale that includes 250 pieces of Titanic memorabilia on Oct.19. Aldridge said there has been significant interest in the piece already.
The Titanic went down after hitting an iceberg 565 kilometres south of Newfoundland, killing 1,517 people.

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Titanic Violin Found! Instrument Played By Bandmaster As Ship Sank

Britain Titanic Violin
The violin played by the bandmaster of the Titanic as the oceanliner sank has been unearthed, a British auction house said Friday.

Survivors of the Titanic have said they remember the band, led by Wallace Hartley, playing on deck even as passengers boarded lifeboats after the ship hit an iceberg.

Hartley’s violin was believed lost in the 1912 disaster, but auctioneers Henry Aldridge & Son say an instrument unearthed in 2006 and has undergone rigorous testing and proven to be Hartley’s.

“It’s been a long haul,” said auctioneer Andrew Aldridge, explaining the find had initially seemed “too good to be true.”

The auction house spent the past seven years and thousands of pounds determining the water-stained violin’s origins, consulting numerous experts including government forensic scientists and Oxford University.

The auction house said the rose wood instrument has two long cracks on its body, but is “incredibly well-preserved” despite its age and exposure to the sea. It estimated the violin is worth six figures.

Hartley was one of the 1,517 people who perished when the Titanic struck an iceberg 350 miles (565 kilometers) south of Newfoundland on April 15, 1912.

Some reports at the time suggested Hartley’s corpse was found fully dressed with his instrument strapped to his body, though there was also speculation the violin floated off and was lost at sea.

Henry Aldridge and Son said it researched the violin’s story with a Hartley biographer as the instrument underwent forensic testing, uncovering documents that showed Hartley was found with a large leather valise strapped to him and the violin inside.

The violin apparently was returned to Hartley’s grieving fiancée, the auction house said, and later ended up in the hands of the Salvation Army before being given to a violin teacher and ultimately Henry Aldridge & Son.

Testing by the U.K. Forensic Science Service showed corrosion deposits were considered “compatible with immersion in sea water,” while a silver expert studied a plate on the violin’s neck to determine if it fit the time profile.

Henry Aldridge & Son said the violin will go on public display at the end of the month at Belfast City Hall, less than a mile from where Titanic was built.

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Photo of Titanic Iceberg Up for Sale…….

An auction house is selling a black and white photo of the iceberg that experts say the Titanic struck shortly before it sank on its maiden voyage.
The photo was taken April 12, 1912, two days before “the unsinkable ship” met her demise when she hit an iceberg shortly before midnight April 14, killing 1,502 people.
The photo shows a huge iceberg with a distinctive elliptical shape. The photograph was taken by the captain of the S.S. Etonian, according to RR Auction of Amherst, N.H. The caption reads, “Copyright. Blueberg taken by Captain W.F. Wood S.S. Etonian on 12/4/12 [April 12, 1912] in Lat 41° 50 N Long 49° 50 W. Titanic struck 14/4/12 [April 14, 1912] and sank in three hours.”
There were no photos of the iceberg before this one emerged, but two Titanic crew members drew sketches of the iceberg that they saw April 14. Both sketches are similar to the elliptical shape of the iceberg in the photo, according to RR Auction.
The coordinates scribbled on the photograph are not far from where the wreckage of the ship lies on the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.
“In my professional judgment, this iceberg is the one that sunk the Titanic,” Titanic artifact collector Stanley Lehrer told the Daily Mail.
Lehrer is noted for his collections of rare Titanic artifacts that have been displayed around the world.
“The captain took the pictures because he was fascinated with the unusual shape of the iceberg. This particular iceberg had an ellipse on the top right of the iceberg,” Lehrer added.
RR Auction expects the photograph to sell for $8,000 to $10,000 when bidding opens Dec. 13. The photo is one of more than 400 items from the Titanic that are up for bidding.

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Titanic jewels to go on display….

Most of the jewelry recovered from the wreckage of the Titanic will go on public display for the first time with a three-city tour. The collection includes diamond and sapphire rings, brooches, necklaces, cuff links and a gold pocket watch.

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Study: ‘Women and Children First’ Is a Myth….

The megahit movie “Titanic” reinforced the commonly held notion that women and children have historically been given priority when passengers and crew must abandon a sinking ship.

But a new study of shipwrecks by two researchers reveals that “women and children first” is a myth.

The study examined 18 shipping disasters dating back to the 1850s and found that the survival rate was 61 percent for crew members, 37 percent for male passengers, 27 percent for women, and 15 percent for children.

The notion that “the captain must go down with the ship” is also a myth, the study disclosed: The survival rate for captains was 44 percent, higher than for male or female passengers and children.

The true rallying cry on sinking ships seemed instead to be “every man for himself,” wrote study authors Mikael Elinder of Sweden’s Uppsala University and Oscar Erixson of the Research Institute of Industrial Economics in Stockholm.

The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It was based on the premise that crew members and male passengers stood a better chance of surviving a free-for-all evacuation due to their greater strength and familiarity with the vessel, and if men chose to sacrifice themselves for the sake of women and children, their survival rates should reflect that.

They did not, the researchers found.

It is true, however, that the survival rate of women on the Titanic was more than three times higher than the men’s survival rate, a result of actions by the British ship’s officers — 74 percent of women and 52 percent of children survived, compared to 20 percent of men, while 1,502 of 2,224 passengers and crew perished.

But the Swedish study found that in general, women suffered worse survival rates aboard British ships than on those flagged by other countries.

Maritime law does not require captains to go down with their ship, or crew members to sacrifice themselves for the sake of women and children passengers, the Los Angeles Times reported.

“‘Women and children first’ is part of the common vernacular,” William Dysart, a maritime lawyer and board chairman of the San Diego Maritime Museum, told the Times.

“But I have to chuckle when I hear people talk about it. To my knowledge it’s never been codified.”

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