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Premier Exhibitions Bankruptcy Update:Settlement with Large Creditor

According to a recent court filing, Premier Exhibitions has settled the largest general outstanding claim. The landlord of Premier’s former New York exhibition site asserted claims of $12.6 million in unpaid rent. Under the settlement, the former landlord will get  $5.5 million and the other remaining claims are disallowed.

You can read the full decision here.


Sunday Titanic News

1.Underwater Explorer Has A Deep Respect For Leadership(Lethbridge Herald, 4 Mar 18)
Ballard is one of the featured guests at this year’s Greatness in Leadership conference taking place in March.He is best known for finding the RMS Titanic in 1985, while on a secret navy mission to investigate two sunken nuclear submarines. “I was a naval officer doing something else, and needed a cover,” he said from his headquarters in Connecticut “I must say, the Pentagon was pissed when I made the discovery. I apologized and said I’d never do it again.” In May, Ballard will hit the open sea to work with Ocean Networks Canada. He and his crew are assisting with efforts to provide improvements to a tsunami early warning system by investigating the Juan de Fuca plate, a tectonic plate subducting under the West Coast.

2.WSU Engineering Students Helping Remap The Titanic (King5.com,1 Mar 2018)
Since Titanic was discovered in 1985, there have been dozens of voyages to the wreckage from government agencies and scientists. But the last time a tourist laid eyes on it was 2005, and the last scientific expedition was in 2010. Technology has also changed a lot in eight years. This time, their five-person sub named Titan will be armed with 4K cameras and a special laser to bring back the best images ever seen. “We can tell within millimeters what the hull is like and create a 3D image of it which we will use in our virtual reality presentation of the wreck,” said Rush.

Public Domain( John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland, Australia)

3.US Museum Labelling Titanic A Failure Blasted By Belfast Councillor(Belfast Telegraph, 27 Feb 18)
The Museum of Failure in Los Angeles is dedicated to displaying 100 items which are rated in terms of innovation and design before being subjected to the museum’s ‘Fail-O-Meter’. The Harland & Wolff-built luxury liner was deemed unsinkable by its designers but tragically sank on its maiden voyage in April 1912 with the loss of more than 1,500 lives. However, Councillor Sonia Copeland, who represents the Titanic District Electoral Area in east Belfast, said the inclusion of the ill-fated cruise liner in the exhibition is completely inappropriate. “I think it’s disgusting. The Titanic hit an iceberg. That wasn’t a failure of the shipbuilders – it was a failure of nature, so to speak,” she said.

4.Medals Of War Hero Who May Have Unwittingly Helped Sink Titanic Go Up For Auction(Belfast Telegraph, 27 Feb 2018)
A special set of medals owned by a Titanic crew member whose memory loss may have sparked the liner’s tragic demise is set to go under the hammer. Crew member David Blair was a selfless man who once plunged into the sea to save a life and received an OBE – but he may have unwittingly caused the catastrophic sinking of the famous ship in 1912. That’s because Second Officer Blair was taken off the Titanic at the last minute – and accidentally held on to the key to a locker containing the crow’s nest binoculars. Titanic survivor Fred Fleet told the official inquiry into the tragedy that if they had the binoculars they would have seen the iceberg that took the ship to its watery grave sooner.


Titanic News for 20 Feb 2018;Titanic Hotel Reopening, Titanic Costume Exhibit, and Update on Premier Exhibitions

RMS Olympic First Class Lounge (1912)
Photo: Robert John Welch (1859-1936), official photographer for Harland & Wolff
Public Domain

Titanic Hotel’ In London With Same Dining Room As The Fateful Ship Reopens After £85M Makeover (The Sun, 16 Feb 2018)
IT’S been 106 years since the Titanic sunk after striking an iceberg in the Atlantic Ocean. And now a hotel with strong links to the tragedy is due to reopen after a huge £85 million refurbishment – a day after the anniversary of the sinking of the ship.The former Hotel Russell in London’s Bloomsbury has been renamed Principal London, and reopens its doors on on April 16. The Grade II listed building was designed by Charles Fitzroy Doll in 1898, and the ornate dining room on board the Titanic, also designed by him, is said to be a replica of the hotel’s. Several passengers on the ship also stayed at the hotel before they set sail on the Titanic from Southampton. There’s also a bronze dragon in the hotel that’s the twin of one that went down on the ship.

Titanic Costume Exhibit Woven Into Vanderbilt Family History At Biltmore(16 Feb 2017,Citizen Times)
With its new exhibition of costumes from the movie “Titanic,” Biltmore brings its costume shows back from England and Europe and lands its guests squarely in America. It’s an emotional homecoming that’s deeply personal for Biltmore’s founder. After all, George Vanderbilt had tickets on the Titanic for himself and his wife, Edith, in early 1912. “We have it in writing,” notes Biltmore associate curator Lauren Henry. “It’s not a legend, it’s a fact that Mr. and Mrs. Vanderbilt were booked to be on Titanic.”

Clerkenwell Titanic Victim Signed On The Day Liner Left(Islington Tribune, 16 Feb 2018)
Among them was Everett Edward Elliott, who lived in Wilmington Street, Clerkenwell. At only 24 years of age, he signed on as a trimmer on April 10, 1912, on the morning the Titanic left Southampton. His body, recovered by rescue ship Mackay-Bennett, lies in Halifax municipal cemetery.

Premier Exhibitions Bankruptcy Mediator Sought(Bankrupt Company News,16 Feb 2018)
Premier Exhibitions and its official committees of equity security holders and unsecured creditors filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court a joint motion for appointment of mediator and to schedule mediation. The motion explains, “The Parties believe it is in the best interest of the estate to mediate any and all matters arising out of or related to the Plan or any other restructuring or liquidating plan, any restructuring and liquidation options and alternatives, the sale of the Debtors’ assets, and any related issues that the Parties agree to mediate. The Parties believe that mediation will help avoid a prolonged confirmation fight among them.”

The Titanic Museum Hosts Secret Dinner Parties You’ve Got To See To Believe(15 Feb 2018, Delish)
It’s a striking sight, for sure, but then again, just beyond it is a massive castle, an inn where it’s Christmas year-round, and a towering King Kong climbing a cartoonish copy of the Empire State Building. No, I’m not tripping. This is Pigeon Forge, TN, home to Dollywood, wax museums, and every kind of tourist attraction imaginable — but I’ve got my sights set on the unsinkable ship that, tragically, sank more than 100 years ago. There’s a secret dining room inside that serves a three-course meal worthy of the White Star Line, but only for groups of 35 or more.


Titanic News for 7 Feb 2018

1.Remembering SS Canberra, The Last Hurrah Of A Golden Age (Brisbane Times, 6 Feb 2018)
Almost 60 years ago, in March 1958, a massive ship rolled into the ocean from the same Belfast shipyard that had launched the Titanic. Dame Pattie Menzies travelled half the way round the world to smash champagne on the hull of the SS Canberra, one of the last hurrahs of the golden era before jet aircraft replaced ocean liners.That era is remembered at a new exhibition which opened last weekend at London’s Victoria and Albert museum – where the Canberra has been chosen to represent the end of an era.

2.Last Chance To See The Titanic?(Radio Canada International, 5 Feb 2018)
The Canadian firm Sub C, has partnered with the U.S. operation, OceanGate Inc. in a venture to take a handful of people down to the wreck in a deepwater submersible. OceanGate’s “Cyclops 2” which can hold five people, is the only privately owned submersible capable of descending to the depth of the Titanic. It may be the last anyone will see of the iconic ship. Canadian scientists Henrietta Mann and Bhavleen Kaur at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia in examining rust samples taken from the ship on earlier dives, had discovered a previously unknown iron eating bacteria since named “Halomonas titanicae”. In their study published in the International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology in 2010, they estimated that the accelerated rusting and decomposition means the ship could simply crumble and basically disappear into a mere rusty stain on the ocean floor within a matter of years. In 2010 they gave the ship only another 15-20 to be recognisable.


Sunday Titanic News

1. London’s V&A Exhibition Showcases Opulent Ocean Liners From The 19Th And 20Th Century(1 Feb 2018,The National)

SS United States at sea, 1950s.
Photo: Public Domain (John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland)

London’s Victoria & Albert Museum will give visitors a taste of the golden age of luxury travel when its exhibition Ocean Liners: Speed & Style opens on Saturday. The show explores the history behind the 19th and 20th centuries’ most opulent cruise ships, starting with the steamship the SS Great Eastern of 1859 and including the SS Kronprinz Wilhelm, RMS Titanic and its sister ship, RMS Olympic, as well as RMS Queen Mary, SS Normandie, SS United States and the QE2. An earlier exhibition took place at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, and has been reimagined for the V&A, incorporating more than 250 exhibits, some of which have never previously been seen in Europe. The story starts in the mid-19th century when ocean travel became a more appealing prospect for wealthy passengers rather than a dangerous voyage which could result in a watery grave.
Ocean Liners: Speed & Style is at London’s V&A from Saturday until June 17, then V&A Dundee from September 15 to February 24, 2019. For more information, see www.vam.ac.uk

2.‘Titanic’ Costume Exhibit Opens In February At Biltmore (27 Jan 2018, Sampson Independent)
Quickly on the heels of the 20th anniversary of 1997’s blockbuster hit “Titanic,” Biltmore will launch a new exhibition, Glamour on Board: Fashion from Titanic the Movie. The exhibition offers dazzling attire worn by actors Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, and many others from the film’s large cast. Staged throughout Biltmore House, the exhibition opens Feb. 9 and runs through May 13.

3.Titanic Recreation Virtually Incredible: Exhibition Re-Imagines Doomed Cruise Ship In Extraordinary Detail For VR Experience Of A Lifetime (13 Jan 2018, Daily Mail)
More than three decades after the Titanic shipwreck was found at the bottom of the Atlantic, a new virtual reality experience takes users below the water’s surface to explore the site. Titanic the Exhibition allows history buffs to wander the reconstructed replicas of the bedrooms and hallways of the British liner and now includes the spectacular technology giving viewers the opportunity to journey through the wreckage. Stunning graphics made possible by front line innovation takes audiences into the shipwreck through a virtual dive vessel to the depths of the freezing waters.


Recent Titanic News

1. Titanic Foundation Launches Tourism Development Plan(31 Jan 2018, Museums Association)
Titanic Foundation, the charity set up in 2007 to preserve and promote Belfast and Northern Ireland’s maritime and industrial heritage, has unveiled plans to further develop the Titanic Quarter’s tourism offer. The Titanic Quarter Destination Plan identifies 12 projects under three core themes – connectivity, visitors and heritage. Projects include the creation of an “outdoor museum”, the development of a Maritime Mile to link the waterfront from Donegall Quay to the tip of Queen’s Island, and the continued preservation and restoration of the area’s heritage assets.

2.Davenport Hotel Recreating Original Titanic Menu(26 Jan 2018, KXLY)
Chef Adam Swedberg and his team have selected five of the original 10 courses served aboard the Titanic. Guests will be allowed to sample and taste original recipes in a historic setting similar to what First Class passengers aboard the Titanic experienced. No reservations are required to enjoy this unique meal. The Palm Grill opens daily at 5 p.m. and closes at midnight. The 5-course dinner costs $50 per person and wine pairings with the meal are at an additional cost.

Titanic Wreck Bow
Image: Public Domain (NOAA-http://www.gc.noaa.gov/images/gcil/ATT00561.jpg)

3. Tickets for Dive to Titanic Wreck Are Up for Grabs — if you have $130K to spare (21 Jan 2018, Toronto Star)
Their $130,000 seats were priced at the inflation-adjusted cost of a first-class ticket for Titanic’s doomed maiden voyage, and help fund the company’s research. Each participant gets flown out for seven days on the chartered research vessel and at least one dive to the wreck site on a five-person sub lasting six to nine hours. “We have some folks who are mountain climbers, we have others who’ve been to the South Pole,” Rush said.
“One guy, I think he snowshoed to the North Pole. It’s a varied group, but I think the unifying characteristic is they’re adventurous.”

Illustration of Pulaski Explosion(1848)
Public Domain (Wikipedia)

4. Divers Believe They’ve Found Famed Luxury Ship That Sank In 1838 Off N.C. Coast (19 Jan 2018, Courier Tribune)
A luxury steamship that went to the bottom of the Atlantic in 1838 with half its affluent passengers may have been found 40 miles off the coast of North Carolina. The disappearance of the Pulaski remains one of the nation’s most dramatic and deadly maritime disasters, partly because half of the people on board died, but also because its passengers included some of the most prominent families in the southeast. Among those lost was New York Congressman William B. Rochester and six members of the Lamar family, then among the richest families in the southeast. The ship was bound for Baltimore from Savannah when it exploded around 11 p.m. on June 13, 1838. One hundred of the roughly 200 people on board died, including many who were scalded to death by steam. Newspaper accounts tell dramatic stories of “panicky passengers in their night clothes, seeking refuge on the promenade deck as the bow rose out of the water and ripped apart.”


Titanic Letter Recovered From First Class Passenger Up For Auction

Public Domain( John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland, Australia)

A handwritten note written by a first class passenger is up for auction at Henry Aldridge & Son reports The News. The note was recovered from the body of Titanic first class passenger Alexander Oskar Holverson.

“It is oversized, hand written on Titanic letterhead by a victim just a day before the ship hit the iceberg, mentions the food, the music and the elite on board, contains an ominous message with regards to the fate of the ship, was carried by its author into the Atlantic and, thence, on to the body recovery ship and shows evidence of its submersion in salt water.”

The note is expected to fetch £80,000 ($106,050 USD) when it comes up for auction on 21 October.

Source:Titanic letter tipped to fetch £80,000 at auction(The News,14 Oct 2017)


Recent Titanic News: Ballard Talks and Scientist Reveals Major Movie Plot Hole

Image: Public Domain (NOAA)

1. Robert Ballard, part of the team that discovered Titanic, recently gave a lecture at Jacksonville University. Addressing 150 marine biology students he noted that he was inspired by the fictional Captain Nemo. While Titanic made him famous, he noted:

“I have done 150 expeditions and when I look back on what were the most important ones, it was not finding the Titanic,” Ballard said. “It was finding amazing systems in our ocean that we did not know were there; going to look for ‘A’ and finding something more important.”

That is certainly someone dedicated to building scientific knowledge.
Source:Finding Titanic made Ballard famous but reach goes deeper (Florida Times-Union,10 Oct 2017)

The Sad Parting
From Story of the Wreck of the Titanic;Marshall Everett);1912
Artist Unknown
Public Domain

2. When noted scientists get involved in silly controversies over fictional movies, I usually shake my head. On the other hand Neil DeGrasse Tyson pointed out a major plot hole over Jack Dawson’s demise.

“Whether or not he could’ve been successful, I would’ve tried more than once. You try once. ‘Oh, this is not gonna work. I will just freeze to death in the water.’ No, excuse me. No!

Okay Dr. Tyson.
Source:Scientist points out huge Titanic film plot hole that fans missed completely (Mirror.co.uk,10 Oct 2017)


Chinese Titanic Replica On Schedule

Titanic at Cobh Harbor, 11 April 1912
Public Domain (Cobh Heritage Centre, Cobh, Ireland)

Unlike the Australian tycoon who could not even put a rivet to his dream of a Titanic replica, the Chinese are half done on their own version reports the UK Daily Mail.

The construction of a full-size replica of the Titanic in China is now half complete. Builders are said to be working around the clock on the £105 million tourist attraction in order to finish the project by the end of the year. Six out of the nine decks of the ship are said to have been built.
The copy of the luxurious passenger ship, which sank in 1912 killing 1,500 people, will be a part of a grand theme park in Sichuan, south-west China, and will be painstakingly reproduced.

According to press reports and interviews, the ship will be an exact replica but docked permanently as part of the Romandisea Seven Star International Cultural Tourism Resort.  And it will also offer people the opportunity to stay aboard and experience what it was like back in 1912. Scrapped from the original plan was the idea of a sinking simulator. It was dropped after it got severely criticized by Titanic groups and descendants of Titanic survivors.

The ship is scheduled to be completed this and open in 2019.

No word if Clive Palmer plans to attend its grand opening.

Source: Building Titanic! £105m full-size replica of the doomed ship is now half complete in China as engineers ‘work around the clock’ on the ‘highly anticipated’ tourist attraction (Daily Mail, 15 Sep 2017)


Major Decision in Titanic Bankruptcy

The bankruptcy proceedings of Premier Exhibitions have been lumbering on for a while with not much to report on. But on 17 August a major decision was made. Premier decided to put up for sale a certain set of artifacts known collectively as the French Artifacts. These artifacts were brought up as part of a joint project but were excluded from the salvage award currently in place as they were property of the French government.

Premier filed to put these up for sale. Papers were served on French Embassy notifying them of the claim and their right to challenge it in court. Well they did not do so. As a result a default judgment has been entered against them with a finding that France had no interest in the French Artifacts. After some formal paperwork is done, the next step will be to come up with a satisfactory method of auctioning them off so that debts can be retired and creditors paid.

The artifacts covered under the current salvage award are unaffected by this decision.