Monday, April 16, 2012

Titanic's artifacts

Titanic was the ship of dreams, carrying aristocrats home to their American mansions and working-class emigrants toward new and better lives.She boasted luxury never seen on the seas before: Opulent suites, grand dining rooms, a sweeping staircase. The biggest ship of her time, she was said to be unsinkable.
Four days into Titanic's maiden voyage, the ship's captain received an iceberg warning. Then, just before midnight on April 14, 1912, the ship's lookout shouted the fateful words: "Iceberg right ahead!"  There was a monstrous jarring, and the mighty liner began to sink. Within hours, 1500 people had died and the world's most famous vessel lay on the ocean  floor.
Here are some artifacts offered on USA auction.

This key to the binoculars store on the Titanic fetched more than $170,000 when it was sold in April 2010. The key, marked with the tag 'Crows Nest Telephone Titanic' was not on the ship when she set sail from Southampton on her maiden voyage on April 10, 1912. As a result, the lookouts could not open the cabinet and had to rely on the naked eye as the ship navigated a treacherous ice field. A postcard (rear) sent home by a passenger on-board sold for more than $32,000 at the same sale. Photo: Henry Aldridge, AP
A second class ticket from the RMS Titanic recovered from the wreck site. Premier Exhibitions - the owner of the largest trove of artefacts salvaged from the Titanic - is putting more than 5000 artefacts from the ship and its passengers up for auction. The Titanic's sinking claimed the lives of more than 1500 of the 2228 passengers and crew. Photo: Don Emmert, AFP

An bottle of 1896 burgundy was recovered from Titanic in a 1996 expedition. The Titanic artefacts were amassed during eight risky and expensive trips to the wreck in 1987, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2004 and 2010. Photo: Gipstein Tod
A hat from a passenger on the RMS Titanic. Items as small as a hairpin and as big as a chunk of the Titanic's hull are among the thousands of artefacts plucked by remote controlled probes from the pitch-black depths, 4km below the ocean's surface. Photo: RMS Titanic, Inc., AP
A pair of binoculars from the RMS Titanic. The total value of a collection of artefacts from the Titanic that will be auctioned in April 2012 has been put at more than $190 million.   Photo: Don Emmert, AFP
A gold mesh purse recovered from the RMS Titanic wreck site. By court order, the artefacts owned by RMS Titanic Inc cannot be sold individually and must go to a buyer who agrees to properly maintain the collection and make it available for occasional public viewing. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images/AFP
Currency from around the world was salvaged from the site of the tragedy. Photo: Stanley Leary, AP
A wicker covered suitcase given to Millvina Dean's mother by the people of New York after the family had lost all their possessions in the Titanic tragedy. Millvena was the last remaining survivor of the Titanic disaster, and was only two-months-old when the ship  struck an iceberg and sank in 1912. She died in 2009. Photo: Henry Aldridge and Son auctioneers, AFP
Sheet music was among the items recovered from the Titanic. A survivor said Nearer my God to Thee was the last song she heard as the band continued to play as the luxury liner went down. The comforting actions of the eight musicians are among many legends to emerge from the Titanic. Photo: Stanley Leary, AP
A third-class tea cup china used by passengers and the crew. Photo: Stanley Leary, AP

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