Tag Archives: news

Recent Titanic News

Catching up on Titanic news so I will be posting updates during the week.
Postcard of the Titanic found in a book donated to Books for Amnesty, 103 Gloucester Rd, Bristol UK
Source: Bristol Post
Date: 20/07/2016
Photographer: Michael Lloyd/Freelance
Reporter: Lewis Pennock
Copyright: Local World

1. Meet the man whose great-granddad sank the Titanic (The Herald, 21 Jan 2017)

“Many descendants of people onboard the ship travelled from far and wide to see the exhibits, which also included a range of items from the Titanic’s sister ships including the Olympic and Britannic. Among them was Simon Medhurst, whose great-grandfather, Robert Hichens, was at the helm of the vessel when it hit the iceberg.The 48-year-old, who travelled down from his home in Chelmsford, said it’s important for people to remember.”

2. Interactive Titanic museum being planned for Niagara Falls, Ont. (Global News,20 Jan 2017)
“A group in Niagara Falls, Ont., has conditionally purchased land that would house the museum and is moving ahead with plans to launch an exhibit dubbed “Experience Titanic.” David Van Velzen, who’s spearheading the project, says the museum will differ from many similar efforts around the world by focusing on an interactive audience experience. Van Velzen says the museum will feature rooms that replicate those on the doomed ocean liner that sank in 1912, and will aim to recreate the experience of striking the iceberg that brought the “unsinkable ship” down. He also says the exhibit will try to educate guests about the various Canadian connections to the ship.”

3. A tragedy of Titanic proportions off the Donegal coast (Derry Journal, 21 Jan 2017)
“She (Laurentic) was on her way to Nova Scotia with German prisoners and 43 tonnes of gold to pay for munitions for the War effort. She was a former White Star Liner, the same as the Titanic, but she was commandeered by the Royal Navy because she was a fast ship and could outrun submarines. The ship struck two mines at the mouth of Lough Swilly and went down very quick. It was minus 13 degrees, it was bitter cold and it was a moonless night and the only light they could see was the light of Fanad Lighthouse. “All or most of the sailors got off and the captain was the last to get off. Even the prisoners were rescued and taken off and they all got into lifeboats, but because of the night that it was, many of them died of exposure, froze to death. It’s the worst place to have a sinking there’s no beaches.”

4. The story behind Saudi Titanic (Saudi Gazette, 21 Jan 2017)
“The wreckage of the ship, dubbed by some Saudis as the ‘Saudi Titanic,’ is one of the main tourist attractions in Hakal province, Sada Tabuk reported. ‘Georgios G’ was built in England after the end of the Second World War, and in 1958 was launched as a cargo liner owned by several individuals and companies. The vessel was owned by a Greek company during its doomed trip, when it got stranded on corals off the Saudi coast in 1978 carrying a cargo of flour. The ship, caught on the corals of the coast, was stuck due to the narrow route available to navigate. The steep, mountain edge rising from the sea made the passage through the valley difficult to maneuver through.”


Tinian Titanic-Themed Resort Stalled

Robert Kyllo/Shutterstock.com

A planned Titanic-themed resort hotel in Tinian has stalled reports Radio New Zealand. While Bridge Investment Group secured a 40-year lease on the property from the Port of Tinian, it has not gotten approval from the Coastal Resources Management. They contend that since the resort will have casino gaming it is not a port-related activity.  So they have denied a permit.

And when it rains it really pours as the Department of Public Lands argues the lease violates its grant of public domain to the Commonwealth Ports Authority. They argue leasing to an entity that engages in a prohibited activity is illegal. So while lawyers and politicians argue how to resolve all of this, the planned development that was supposed to have begun early in 2016 has been pushed back. Way back.
Source:$150M Titanic-themed resort on Tinian stalls (30 Dec 2016,Radionz.co.nz)


Titanic News & Musings

Photo:Daemonic Kangaroo(Wikipedia)
Photo:Daemonic Kangaroo(Wikipedia)

Titanic Memorial Plaque Not Stolen Reports BBC News
A Titanic memorial plaque at Vokes Park in Southampton, UK was thought stolen earlier this week. The plaque, erected in the 1990’s by the British Titanic Society, was in fact removed by staff of Associated British Ports. The plaque had fallen off its plinth and was in danger of being stolen reports BBC News. The plaque will be returned and affixed to prevent it from being stolen but the date has not been announced.
Source: Southampton docks Titanic memorial plaque mystery solved (24 Nov 2016, BBC News)

Photo: Mossgreen Auctioneers
Photo: Mossgreen Auctioneers

Rare Parcel Label Address To Titanic To Be Auctioned Off
Another case of something unintentional ending up as a Titanic memorabilia. A parcel label that possibly was on a package of blank telegram forms for the Marconi wireless operators on Titanic is up for auction in Australia reports United Press International (UPI). The package was given to the first office on Olympic, Titanic’s sister ship and to be delivered to Titanic when it arrived in New York. It is believed the Olympic first officer gave the label as a souvenir after Titanic sank and eventually ended up with a private collector who is putting it up for auction. Mossgreen Auctioneers is handling the auction and is expected to fetch $20,000.
Source:Postal label addressed to Titanic expected to raise $20,000 at auction (18 Nov 2016, UPI)

The Day After The Feast

Well Thanksgiving has come to an end and today is called Black Friday here in the United States. People might think that an odd name considering what happens. Many retail chains, mostly the bigger ones, offer special deals on Black Friday to lure people into their stores. It is a clever marketing idea to get a lot of stuff off the shelves for the Christmas holiday. So they deep discount on anything they want to get rid off. Loss leaders are put up to reel in many to buy even more than they intended. The desire to maximize the profits led many chains to open up on Thanksgiving. This has not been welcomed by many employees who want to spend more time at home. Then again some retailers do sweeten the pot, so to speak, with time and half pay. Some think that is required by U.S. federal law but it is not. Unless you work over forty hours a week, that rule does not apply. It is up to the employer to decide if they want to pay you extra for working on a holiday. If you are part of a union, then in the contract with the employer it may specify that working on holidays gets you time. Most employers who can afford usually will pay time and half to get their workers to come in. It takes a lot of people to stock those shelves and check them out at the cashier stand.

I decided this year to not put up the usual safety warnings about deep frying turkey. This video by the Fresno fire department explains it pretty well. Hey you do not need an expensive outdoor fryer. You can buy a electric deep fryer designed for the same thing for the kitchen. You measure in the oil precisely, insert the turkey and close the lid. I saw one video of an old guy wearing shorts and no shoes trying to put the turkey in the fryer. The oil overflowed, flames erupted and the man ran for his life while someone called 911. Enough said.

Have a nice Thanksgiving weekend everyone,


Titanic Plaque In Spain Called A Fake

Photo: The Spanish Titanic Foundation
Photo: The Spanish Titanic Foundation

A plaque commemorating Titanic launch in 1912 has been called a fake according to The Olive Press. The plaque–on display at a Titanic exhibition in Grenada, Spain–has been missing for over a century when a Spanish art dealer found it in his grandfather’s collection. He claims that his grandfather bought it (without knowing its importance) from an art dealer twelve years ago. It was given to the Spanish Titanic Foundation and the star attraction in the current exhibition.

However David van Dalen of The Netherlands, an avowed Titanic fan, claims it is a forgery and likely created in the 1990’s. The fonts used on the plaque came into existence after 1915, and text lines appear compressed or distorted which indicates a computer was used. According to van Dalen:

This so-called important resurfaced relic proves to be fakery beyond any doubt, not priceless but virtually worthless, fabricated and fake-aged by an unknown maker using computer fonts randomly and unwittingly like an ignorant child.

He also notes the picture on the plaque is a well known photo of Titanic sailing away from Southampton after the plaque was presented. However it appears there are no plans to remove the plaque from the exhibition.

Source: Titanic Relic Found In Spain Is Declared Fake(The Olive Press,5 Dec 2015)


Titanic News Briefs

1.  Titanic Survivor’s Lincoln Park Home May Go Residential Again
A once-elegant Lincoln Park townhouse designed for a survivor of the Titanic may become a residence again after spending 40 years as the home of a recovery program for people with mental illnesses. The corner home was built in 1917 for Emily Ryerson. Five years earlier, her husband Arthur, a lawyer and member of the family behind Ryerson Steel, died in the sinking of the Titanic, but she, their three children and two servants survived. Emily Ryerson’s 17-room home was the biggest of an attached string of four completed in 1917 by architects David Adler, Henry Dangler and Ambrose Cramer and designed to resemble grand rowhouses in London.
Source: Titanic Survivor’s Lincoln Park Home May Go Residential Again(Crain’s Chicago Business, 19 Nov 2015)

2. Titanic Hotel To Help Pensioners On Christmas Day
White Christmas Liverpool, held in the Town Hall for the past two years, offers a hot meal and entertainment to 250 elderly people who would otherwise be spending Christmas Day alone. But last month it was announced that the event was at risk of being pulled due to a lack of funding, and organisers put out an urgent appeal for support and a venue. Liverpool’s Titanic Hotel announced that the event will be hosted in its Rum Warehouse venue on Stanley Dock.
Source: Christmas Day Event For Lonely Pensioners Saved After Liverpool’s Titanic Hotel Steps In (Liverpool Daily Echo,19 Nov 2015)

3. Rare Plymouth Titanic Poster Sells For A Small Fortune
A rare 104-year-old poster advertising transatlantic trips, via Plymouth ,on the ill-fated Titanic and her sister ship, the Olympic, sold for almost £7,000 at an auction in America last night. The 20 by 24 inch poster, issued in or around 1911, the year before the Titanic’s ill-fated maiden voyage, is emblazoned with the words: “White Star Line,Southampton-Cherbourg- Queenstown-New York (via Plymouth eastbound)Triple-Screw R.M.S.Olympic 45,000 tons & Titanic 45,000 tons. Largest steamers in the world.”
Source: Rare Plymouth Titanic Poster Sells For A Small Fortune (Western Morning News, 20 Nov 2015)

4. Aboard the Titanic at Liberty Science Center
Inside the Liberty Science Center’s new Titanic artifact exhibition, be sure to check out the extensive menu enjoyed by wealthy passengers: It starts with consommé, goes into salmon, filet mignon, lamb, duck and beef sirloin, and ends with Waldorf pudding, éclairs and French ice cream. I can attest to the richness of it all: I attended a re-creation of the Titanic’s final first-class dinner held by the science center last week. The sumptuous meal went on for 10 courses and lasted more than three hours. “Back then, no one looked at their waistlines,” said Donatella Arpaia, who, along with fellow celebrity chef Alex Guarnaschelli, presented dishes such as asparagus vinaigrette, roasted squab with cress sauce, green pea timbale (a molded custard) and foie gras pâté (the ninth course!).
Source: Aboard the Titanic at Liberty Science Center (NorthJersey.com,5 Nov 2015)

5. Titanic Belfast Stars In UK Passport
One of Belfast’s most eye-catching landmarks is to sail into the new UK passport when it is rolled out next month. Titanic Belfast has been selected to feature on the ‘brilliant buildings’ page, which celebrates modern and historic architecture across the UK. The tourist attraction’s design is based on the bow of the Titanic and capitalises on its unique location, built beside the slipway where the liner was floated in 1911.
Source: Titanic Belfast Stars In UK Passport (Belfast Telegraph,5 Nov 2015)


Premier Exhibitions Announces Shareholder Approval of Merger

PremierExhibitionslogoThe expected approval of the Dinoking merger with Premier Exhibitions took place on 29 Oct 2015. According to the press release, the merger transaction will take place in the next few days. Upon merger completion, Daoping Bao will be appointed the president and chief executive officer of the company. Some shareholders have expressed the hope that Bao will fix the problems caused by poor management of the company.

Source: Premier Exhibitions, Inc. Announces Shareholder Approval of Merger With Dinoking Tech Inc (Globe Newswire-Press Release,30 Oct 2015)


Iconic Belfast Titanic Mural Restored By Artist

Titanic mural at Newtownards Road and Dee Street in Belfast, NI. (Andy Welsh,http://www.flickr.com/photos/wallrevolution/68715920/)
Titanic mural at Newtownards Road and Dee Street in Belfast, NI. (Andy Welsh,http://www.flickr.com/photos/wallrevolution/68715920/)

An iconic Titanic mural painted in 2003 had become shabby looking due to weathering. Located at the corner of Newtownards Road and Dee Street in Belfast, the mural had become a destination for bus and taxi tours. Painted in black and white, the mural honors the ship and the workers who built it. John Stewart, who was the artist who created the mural, was able to raise £3,000 ($4,595 USD) to help complete the restoration that took six weeks.

“I’m delighted with how it looks now and I can’t wait to start my next project.”
(John Stewart to Belfast Telegraph)

Source: Artist Restores Much-Loved Titanic Mural To Former Glory (Belfast Telegraph, 29 Oct 2015)

Titanic News for 5 Sep 2015

Titanic Lunch Menu 14 April 1912. Photo: AP
Titanic Lunch Menu 14 April 1912.
Photo: AP

Online auctioneer To Auction Off Titanic Lunch Menu
Lion Heart Autographs of New York is auctioning off a rare Titanic lunch menu and other artifacts on 30 Sep 2015. The menu is signed in pencil by first class passenger Isaac Gerald Frauenthal. A ticket from the weighing chair in the Turkish baths and a letter written by survivor Mabel Francatelli to Abraham Lincoln Salomon are also being auctioned at the same time. The menu is expected to fetch between $50,000-$70,000, the ticket $7500-$10,000, and the letter $4,000-$6,000.
Source: Last Lunch Menu And Artefacts From Titanic’s Number One Lifeboat Auctioned(31 Aug 2015,The Guardian)

Titanic II or Titanic III?
Maritime Executive reports on the new time frame for Titanic II but looks at the Chinese replica being built in China as another possibility for Titanic enthusiasts. The article does not add anything new about Titanic II or the Chinese replica but sort of raises the question as to which one would you rather experience. Assuming of course if Palmer’s Titanic II ever gets built.
Source:Titanic II or Titanic III(30 Aug 2015,Maritime Executive)

Michel Navaratil Remembered At  Bratislava Titanic Exhibition
Michel Navaratil, who perished when Titanic sank but got his two sons into lifeboats,is being remembered as part of a Titanic exhibition in Bratislava, Slovakia. Navratil was born in Sered’ in 1880 and left for France at age 20. There he met Marcella Caretto with whom he had two sons: Michel and Edmond. After learning his wife had cheated on him, he decided to take his sons to the United States. Sadly he never made it but his kids survived causing a worldwide search for his relatives. Ultimately their mother found about them and they returned to France. The exhibition runs until 6 Dec 2015.

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

Protecting Titanic: A Bit Too Late To Make A Difference
One of the raging controversies that divides (and still divides)the Titanic community was salvage. When Titanic was found in 1985, two miles down and in international waters, it meant no country could claim it within their borders. A company called RMS Titanic Inc (now part of Premier Exhibitions)went out and brought up some artifacts. It then went to federal court in the United States (in the United States the federal courts have original jurisdiction on maritime claims)and made a salvage claim. Since they had actual artifacts and the company that once owned the ship is gone (technically it became part of Cunard but it made no attempt to exert any legal claim on the wreck), they were awarded salvor-in-possession. One insurance company (which paid money out on a claim when Titanic sank)reached a settlement with RMS Titanic, Inc. The rest, as it is said, is history and the artifacts brought up now comprise Titanic:The Artifact Exhibition.

There was a brief tourist business in having people dive to the wreck. It was hideously expensive and there was some minor legal kerfuffle by RMS Titanic Inc to stop it (they lost). But that has pretty much died away. The wreck itself, like all wrecks, is being slowly eaten up by the sea (microbes and other organisms)and will be nothing more in a decade or more. Hardly anyone dives to it anymore. RMS Titanic Inc gave up its salvage claim and has been trying–unsuccessfully so far–in selling the Titanic collection. Now word comes Canada wants an exception to its claim of territory so it can claim the wreck as being in its waters. Huh? This makes no sense at all except as a publicity stunt. The wreck is disintegrating, some say accelerated by the diving down to it by salvagers and tourists. It might have made sense way long ago but it is far too late to make any difference now. It sounds nice though, from the government point-of-view, that we are taking steps to preserve the final moments of this disintegrating wreck. Too bad no one asks the obvious question why they waited till 2015 when they could have tried it back in 1985.
Source:The Way the Titanic Is Treated May Be About to Change(2 Sep 2015,Newser)


Weekly Titanic News

[Note-during the summer months I will only update Titanic news weekly unless it is something really big.]

running21. Titanic Half Marathon Panned As Shambles
Runners are not shy about telling when things are not done right. The Titanic Half and 10K Marathon was anything but well received by those who ran it. Complaints were aplenty: not well marked route, the half marathon was not really a half marathon, no first aid stations for runners after the race, one ambulance for the race, and probably the worst was not enough portable toilets. An investigation has been launched by the governing body.
Source: Organiser Defends Belfast’s Titanic Half Marathon Branded ‘A Shambles’ By Runners(14 Jul 2015,Belfast Telegraph)

2. Titanic Experience Cobh Seeking Stories From Those Who Migrated Away On White Star Ships
Many sons and daughters of the Emerald Isle left in the 1900’s and Titanic Experience in Cobh wants to hear their stories of travels on White Star ships. Cobh was a major departure point and their last look at Ireland as they sailed away usually forever. They are asking for relatives to share stories so they can be recorded. Local people are being asked to help as well with whatever they have as well. To submit a story or to obtain further information you can contact them via email at email stories@ titanicexperiencecobh.ie. They want to compile the stories for an exhibition in August.
Source: Cobh Centre Seeks Stories Of Exile From Queenstown(13 Jul 2015,Irish Examiner)*

Photo: The Spanish Titanic Foundation
Photo: The Spanish Titanic Foundation

3. Calling Columbo: Mystery Plaque Shows Up But Where Was It For So Many Years?
A Titanic commemorative plaque given to Lord Pirrie in 1912 ended up in Spain and now with the Spanish Titanic Foundation. The plaque is inscribed Titanic below the moniker “Queen of the Ocean” along with ships departures date. The story is that a British man in need of cash sold it to an art dealer in Barcelona, Spain. It was acquired by the dealer’s grandson who hung it in his home and recently loaned it to Spanish Titanic Foundation. The plaque had been in Pirrie’s office and then disappeared until 2003. All kinds of questions arise about its provenance as a result. One assumes they have authenticated it is the real plaque through forensic testing. There is also an open question as to how it came to be in the hands of some, as of yet unidentified, British citizen who decided to sell it for cash. Considering the popularity of Titanic, why was it sold to an art dealer in Barcelona when it could have commanded a much higher price at well known auction houses in the UK? Skeptics will wonder whether the reason is that the person selling it might have a hard time proving they had legal possession or that it might be a fake. The mystery continues.
Source: Long-Lost Plaque From The Titanic Turns Up In Spain After More Than A Century(10 Jul 2015,The Independent)

*Due to policy of demanding payment for links for Republic of Ireland newspapers, links are no longer provided.

Update on Chinese Titanic Sinking Simulator/Replica: Shipbuilder Assembling Parts

Photo courtesy George Behe
Photo courtesy George Behe

According to Ecns.com, Chinese government owned China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) is now building parts for the full Titanic replica. The replica will be the main attraction at Seven Star’s planned theme park in Daying where it will be permanently docked. It is scheduled to open in 2017. U.S. based designers are working with Seven Star to develop precise dimensions and layout. The replica will meet all current safety standards and is estimated to cost $161 million or 1 billion yuan. The sinking simulator apparently will be a separate simulation in the same theme park.

As for Clive Palmer’s Titanic replica, not a word.

Source: State-Run Shipbuilder Begins Assembling Parts For Full-Scale Titanic Replica(18 May 2015,Ecns.com)