Tag Archives: Titanic

Harland & Wolff Still Waiting On Government; New Jersey Man Died on Titanic

Harland & Wolff David and Goliath crane in Belfast, 2006
Plastic Jesus (Dave) via Wikimedia Commons

Jolly, J. (2024, July 17). Titanic shipyard owner Harland & Wolff awaits news of funding lifeline. The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/business/article/2024/jul/16/titanic-shipyard-owner-harland-wolff-awaits-news-of-funding-lifeline

Harland & Wolff, the owner of the Belfast shipyard that built the Titanic, has insisted that it is still awaiting a government decision on a £200m intervention despite signs that Labour is due to reject the financial lifeline. Harland & Wolff (H&W) was forced to suspend its London-listed shares a fortnight ago, and it has missed two deadlines to file audited accounts, raising questions over its finances and its ability to fulfil a £1.6bn contract to build the three fleet solid support ships that will carry supplies such as ammunition and food to the navy’s aircraft carriers.

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Michal, J. (2024, July 16). Have you heard of the South Jersey man aboard Titanic? Cat Country 107.3. https://catcountry1073.com/south-jersey-businessman-died-on-titanic/

Over 1,500 people died at sea that night. Horrible deaths, too. Among them, believe it or not, was a South Jersey native. His name was Frederick Sutton. Sutton was born in England but came to the US in the late 1800s. He ultimately ended up settling in present-day Haddonfield in Camden County. According to Encyclopedia Titanica, Sutton did pretty well for himself in life, making his fortune in multiple business ventures from coffee importing to holding leadership positions in multiple banks. The venture that led him to the southeastern most points of NJ, however, was his interest in real estate. Real estate + the beach… makes sense, right? Reportedly, Frederick Sutton was one of the founding fathers of a little fishing town on one specific South Jersey beach. Today, we call it Wildwood.

Suggested Reading

Eaton John P. & Haas Charles, TITANIC TRIUMPH AND TRAGEDY, SECOND EDITION, W.W. Norton & Company, New York, New York, 1995 First American Edition

Rossignol, K. (2012). Titanic 1912: The Original News Reporting of the Sinking of the Titanic. Createspace Independent Publishing Platform.

Wilson, A. (2012). Shadow of the Titanic: The Extraordinary Stories of Those Who Survived. Simon and Schuster.

Titanic News Channel is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

More Info on Dive to Titanic, Titanic Liability Law Being Used In Bridge Collapse, Titanic Exhibition Coming to Boston

RMS Titanic pictured in Queenstown, Ireland 11 April 1912
Source:Cobh Heritage Centre, Cobh Ireland/Wikimedia Commons

The BBC is reporting that the upcoming dive by RMS Titanic Inc. will be gathering the most detailed photographic record of the wreck. They will be using state of the art technology and remotely operated  vessels to go over every part of the ship they can.

Francis, J. a. a. A. (2024, July 12). RMS Titanic shipwreck: Bid to make ultimate photo record. https://www.bbc.com/news/articles/c1we095wzv1o

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NTSB drone image of Francis Scott Key Bridge and Cargo Ship Dali (26 Mar 2024)
NTSB
Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

When the freighter Dali struck the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, it sought protection from liability using an 1851 law called Shipowners’ Limitation of Liability Act of 1851. This act was famously used by the owners of Titanic to limit liability claims and became known as the Titanic Act since then. This act limits the liability by setting the value to just the value of the ship and its contents. It is from this pool that all liability payments will be drawn from. This forces all claims to go to this one court and limits the damages the company pays. The act was done to prevent American ship owners from having to pay out huge liability awards that could result in the company shuttering.

Now this limitation is quite striking when you consider air or rail disasters that result in significant legal damages often having to be paid either by court judgment or settlements. So for a ship owner, this can really keep you from being sued for astronomical sums of money. The downside, of course, is that for those who lost cargo or relatives, the money to be paid out will be quite small. Now the law does have some qualifications. If it can be proven the ship owner was negligent, then they cannot get coverage under this law. In the case of the Dali, they are using the act to limit the damages they will pay out. Not only did a bridge come down but several people died. So the City of Baltimore is challenging their claim arguing they were negligent and thus cannot be afforded protection under this act. The city is only going to get $300 million from Chubb, and the cost of building a new bridge will be a lot higher than that. A good review of the law and how it will be used in this particular case was done by two New York attorneys who wrote for their state bar association. It is worth a read to understand how this law works.

Reilly, R., & F. Gleason, T. (2024, July 10). What does the Titanic have to do with the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse? New York State Bar Association. https://nysba.org/what-does-the-titanic-have-to-do-with-the-francis-scott-key-bridge-collapse/

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Exhibition News

Titanic: The Artifact Exposition is coming to Boston on 17 October 2024. It will be at the Saunders Castle at Park Plaza. For information and details, go to https://titanicboston.us/ for information on dates, times, and how to purchase tickets.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/titanic-the-artifact-exhibition-coming-to-boston-302192296.html

Suggested Reading

Brewster, H. (2013). Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage: The Titanic’s First-Class Passengers and Their World. National Geographic Books.

Eaton John P. & Haas Charles, TITANIC TRIUMPH AND TRAGEDY, SECOND EDITION, W.W. Norton & Company, New York, New York, 1995 First American Edition

Lord, Walter, A NIGHT TO REMEMBER, Holt Rinehart and Winston, New York, New York, 1955. Multiple revisions and reprints, notably Illustrated editions (1976,1977,1978 etc.)

Titanic News Channel is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

RMS Titanic Inc to Dive to Titanic; U.S. Government Ends Legal Fight To Stop It.

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

RMS Titanic Inc. is set to dive to Titanic later this month. Originally, they wanted to retrieve the Marconi wireless before further decay of the ship made it impossible. However, the U.S. government objected to the dive as it would be a violation of the Titanic Treaty now in place and thus the wreck a protected gravesite. RMS Titanic countered it had already sought and obtained permission from the court overseeing the salvage. The company has scaled back its plans and will no longer seek to remove anything from inside the hull. Also, they will not be using manned submersibles but remotely operated vehicles for the actual dive.

Sources

Finley, B. (2024, July 3). US ends legal fight against Titanic expedition. Battles over future dives are still possible | AP News. AP News. https://apnews.com/article/titanic-shipwreck-expedition-legal-fight-rmst-b3e4309440ef220ac7cc7ccf1af2bd4b

Guinness, E. (2024, July 2). Titan submersible: First dive to Titanic wreck since OceanGate disaster to take place this month. The Independent. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/titanic-oceangate-titan-submersible-disaster-shipwreck-b2572458.html

Suggested. Reading

Behe, G. (2012). On board RMS Titanic: Memories of the Maiden Voyage. The History Press.

Brewster, H. (2013). Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage: The Titanic’s First-Class Passengers and Their World. National Geographic Books.

Lord, Walter, A NIGHT TO REMEMBER, Holt Rinehart and Winston, New York, New York, 1955. Multiple revisions and reprints, notably Illustrated editions (1976,1977,1978 etc.)

Titanic News Channel is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Harland & Wolff Faces More Problems and Volo Titanic Exhibit Reopens

Harland & Wolff David and Goliath crane in Belfast, 2006
Plastic Jesus (Dave) via Wikimedia Commons

Beleaguered Harland & Wolff asked that its shares listed in London be halted due to problems with government auditors. Auditors have so far refused to sign off its accounts and the deadline they agreed upon expired on Monday. Harland states it will publish them next week after discussing with its bookkeepers how best to report revenues from contracts. The issue has called into question a Royal Navy contract and is still awaiting approval for a loan guarantee of £200 million. The company warns if it is not approved by Thursday, then its ability to execute contracts will be peril. Currently the company has partnered with Spanish state-owned ship building giant Navantia to work on the Royal Navy contract.

Source:

Oliver, M. (2024, July 1). Royal Navy ships at risk as auditors refuse to sign off Titanic shipyard’s accounts. The Telegraph. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2024/07/01/titanic-shipbuilder-suspends-shares-amid-row-with-auditors/

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The Volo Museum Titanic exhibit has reopened after being closed due to a flood. The exact cause of the flood has yet to be determined though it is likely that storms that hit the area around the time were responsible. However, since the museum is known for its alleged supernatural occurrences, naturally some speculate an otherworldly explanation. So far, no explanation has been offered and officials claim no broken pipes, roof leaks, or anything else that could have allowed so much water in. The flooding itself was captured on security footage and shows it spreading on the floor indicating it most certainly occurred. The question is how the flooding occurred. The water could have seeped up and out through as yet undiscovered holes in the floor or on the sides. Or it could be a case of simple fakery where someone created the flood in such a way as to make it look like no obvious explanation can be seen. Very skilled illusionists and those who work with special effects have all kinds of interesting ways to make things look real when they aren’t.

Source:

Borcia, S. (2024, July 1). Titanic exhibit at Volo Museum reopens after being shut down due to ‘unexplainable’ flooding. Lake and McHenry County Scanner. https://www.lakemchenryscanner.com/2024/07/01/titanic-exhibit-at-volo-museum-reopens-after-being-shut-down-due-to-unexplainable-flooding/

Suggested Reading or Viewing

Rossignol, K. (2012). Titanic 1912: The Original News Reporting of the Sinking of the Titanic. Createspace Independent Publishing Platform.

Wilson, A. (2012). Shadow of the Titanic: The Extraordinary Stories of Those Who Survived. Simon and Schuster.

Cameron, J. (Director). (2012, September 12). Titanic (Digitally Remastered). Paramount.

Titanic News Channel is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

 

Titanic Exhibit Closed Due To Flooding

Titanic Exhibit Closed
Screenshot of Volo Museum Website 27 June 2024
Mark Taylor, Titanic News Channel

The Volo Museum in Illinois, which has a Titanic exhibit, experienced a flood recently that shut down that exhibit. According to news reports, it happened last weekend and was captured on security footage. It was the first time the building has had a flood, but recent storms may have been the cause. The exhibit itself is quite popular displaying Titanic related items and displays a unique car: a 1912 Renault Type CB Coupé de Ville. Only two were made and one was aboard Titanic being brought to America by William Carter. James Cameron built a replica from the original plans to use in his movie.

At first, they thought simply cleaning up the wet floor was all that needed to be done. However, the moisture from the water was getting into all the brass on the cars in the room, so they need extra time to clean it up. The exhibit is scheduled to reopen this Saturday. As of yet, they have yet to locate exactly how the water entered the exhibit since none of the pipes burst. Since the museum has had alleged paranormal activity, some are speculating perhaps that was the cause. However, while the museum publicly has no explanation, a more ordinary explanation will likely be found (like small holes in the floor that allowed the water to come or similar).

Sources

Chicago, F. 3. (2024, June 25). Suburban Titanic exhibit shuts down after “unexplainable” flooding: “Resembled scenes from the Titanic movie.” FOX 32 Chicago. https://www.fox32chicago.com/news/volo-titanic-exhibit-shuts-down-unexplainable-flooding

Lutz, B. (2024, June 25). WGN-TV. WGN-TV. https://wgntv.com/news/lake-county/illinois-titanic-exhibit-under-water-from-mystery-flood/

Peek, J. (2023, February 10). Titanic went down 107 years ago today, taking a French luxury car with it. Hagerty Media. https://www.hagerty.com/media/automotive-history/titanic-sinks-with-1912-renault-aboard/

Titan Update: Investigation Ongoing Says Coast Guard

Titan (submersible)
Becky Kagan Schott, OceanGate

It has been over a year since the Titan submersible tragically sank in the North Atlantic. However, the expected report on the particulars as to how it happened is not completed according to the Associated Press. Jason Neubauer, who is the chair of the Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation into the disaster, states the report is taking longer than expected. He notes that it is complex and ongoing. This is not as unusual as it sounds. Often investigations can take longer because of the many factors that have to be weighed and examined to determine what exactly went wrong. This happens often in airline disasters when the cause is complicated, and more than one factor is involved. “We are working closely with our domestic and international partners to ensure a comprehensive understanding of the incident,” said Neubauer.

Parallel to this story is how dives to the Titanic are being done or planned. RMS Titanic, Inc will have an upcoming dive to Titanic. No actual salvage is being planned (there was some opposition from the U.S. government on that) so it will be to collect more data on the wreck and everything around it. There have been reports of others wanting to jump back into commercial dives to Titanic. OceanGate at this time is not planning any return to Titanic for the foreseeable future. The AP reports that the company declined any comment when asked about it. A former advisor to the company, David Concannon, claims that its former president (Stockton Rush) has been vilified along with those associated with the expedition. He made an interesting statement though that many who were on the support ship Polar Prince have yet to be interviewed by the Coast Guard. That seems odd considering it is usually the case you want to get as many witness statements as you can about how things were going on.

One of the things that came out of the tragedy according to a separate AP story on this, was that none those tasked with responding to this emergency had the equipment needed to dive down to Titanic. Richard Garriott, who is president of the Explorer’s Club, knew all the people involved and was deeply saddened by the loss.

Garriott believes even if the Titan hadn’t imploded, the correct rescue equipment didn’t get to the site fast enough. The tragedy caught everyone from the Coast Guard to the ships on site off guard, underscoring the importance of developing detailed search and rescue plans ahead of any expedition, he said. His organization has since created a task force to help others do just that.

Katy Croff Bell, a veteran deep-sea explorer notes that the tragedy brings home the importance of following industry standards and rigorous testing. So, while the tragedy looms large over anyone thinking about such Herculean dives, the technology to do it safely is there. And as reports have indicated, there are those out there who plan to resume commercial dives to Titanic. Bell heads up a group focused on making such investigations less expensive and accessible. It will be a while before those operations are up and running, so time will tell how many will invest hard money to do this kind of operation.

Sources

Osborne, M. (2024, June 14). Titan submersible implosion: Investigation into accident taking longer than planned, Coast Guard says. ABC News. https://abcnews.go.com/US/titan-submersible-implosion-investigation-accident-taking-longer-planned/story?id=111132353

Whittle, P., & Ramer, H. (2024, June 17). A year after Titan submersible implosion, deep-sea explorers vow to pursue ocean’s mysteries | AP News. AP News. https://apnews.com/article/titan-implosion-submersible-titanic-05903e98b0155b9d69249b86d3df6c89

Suggested Reading

Behe, George. Fate Deals a Hand: The Slippery Fortunes of Titanic’s Professional Gamblers. History Press, 2023.

Fitch, Tad, et al. On a Sea of Glass: The Life and Loss of the RMS Titanic. 2015.

Lynch, Donald. Titanic: An Illustrated History. Hyperion, 1995.

Titanic News Channel  is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

James Cameron Says Titan Sinking Broke All The Rules; Alleged Titan Transcript Deemed A Fraud

Titan (submersible)
Becky Kagan Schott, OceanGate

James Cameron (famed director of Titanic) stated at a recent appearance on a news show about the Titan submersible tragedy that they (OceanGate) broke all the rules. He went on further to say that the submersible should not have been carrying passengers. As the first anniversary of the sinking approaches, Cameron opined that there is a lot of mystery surrounding the investigation. Cameron claims he offered to be part of the investigative community for the U.S. Coast Guard, but they turned it down.

I think they want to do things their way and frankly I think they’ve kind of got egg on their face and they don’t want outside opinions. That’s just my interpretation.”

Cameron also criticized the media circus that erupted over the tragedy saying that they fueled unwarranted hope that they would be alive. And they knew the location of the submersible and had no readily available means to dive to it. He accuses the Coast Guard of withholding information to the families of those who perished. And that they knew from naval intelligence that an implosion had occurred.

“They just didn’t disclose. They were informed by naval intelligence that an implosion event was tracked to the co-ordinate of the Titanic wreck site.”

Cameron does believe charges are appropriate but the main person responsible, OceanGate CEO Rush Stockton, perished in the tragedy.

Cameron indicates that he will build a submersible to go down to Titanic. He was a friend of Paul-Henri Nargeolet,who perished in the tragedy, and wants to honor his friend and show that it can be safely done.

Source

Brennan, A. (2024, June 9). Titanic director’s take on OceanGate tragedy. News. https://www.news.com.au/entertainment/tv/current-affairs/james-cameron-explains-his-theories-behind-oceangate-submersible-tragedy/news-story/364889e3f1a83cd46fcec877f80a004e

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Log Purported To Be From Titan Submersible Deemed A Fraud

A supposed transcript distributed via YouTube and TikTok not long after the Titan submersible tragedy in June 2023 claimed to be the log from the doomed expedition has deemed a fraud. While many did put disclaimers as to its authenticity, Snopes marked it as “unconfirmed.” Now it has been deemed a fake

“I’m confident it’s a false transcript,” Jason Neubauer, a retired U.S. Coast Guard captain who now chairs the Marine Board of Investigation, told The New York Times. “It was made up.”

The transcript appears to make it sound like those in the submersible knew what was happening. However, the actual transcript (never made public) does not match up with it casting further doubt it was authentic. The men had no idea that Titan was about to implode. So far no one has been identified as the author of the transcript.

Source

Braine, T. (2024, June 11). Detailed log of Titan submersible’s descent to Titanic wreckage deemed fake. New York Daily News. https://www.nydailynews.com/2024/06/10/detailed-log-of-titan-submersibles-descent-to-titanic-wreckage-deemed-fake/

Titanic News Channel  is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Titanic Survivor Family Objects To Billionaire Diving to Titanic

Colorised photo of Ned Parfett, best known as the “Titanic paperboy”, holding a large newspaper about the sinking, standing outside the White Star Line offices at Oceanic House on Cockspur Street near Trafalgar Square in London SW1, April 16, 1912.
Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

As noted on 30 May, an Ohio billionaire named Larry Connor wants to dive to Titanic to show that submersibles are safe. This has prompted Shelley Binder, the descendant of Titanic survivors Leah and Phillip Aks to come forward an object to his plan. According to the interview, she believes the resting place of those who died should remain undisturbed.

“Fundamentally, I think one could say these people have more dollars than sense,” Binder told the outlet. “And the idea of tourism to a wreck where 1,496 people lost their lives in a truly horrific disaster of epic proportions is offensive. What happened aboard that ship was extremely traumatic and harrowing for my great-grandmother and great-uncle. This was a devastating and landmark moment in their lives, and it had long-lasting repercussions for my entire family.”

While diving to the wreck to retrieve artifacts requires court approval, merely diving down to see the wreck is legal. When the idea of Titanic dive tourism began, RMS Titanic Inc. sought to stop people from diving claiming it had sole access to the wreck. However a federal appeals court ultimately ruled against them agreeing with the argument that merely viewing cannot violate their salvage claim. After all, one may have exclusive photos of the Empire State Building in New York but you cannot stop people from going to it and taking their own pictures.

Whether or not Larry Connor will go through with it is another story.  However it is more likely to occur than a certain Australian mogul’s desire to build a modern day Titanic. Despite lots of fanfare, it remains unbuilt to this day.

Source:
Pollina, Richard. “Titanic Survivor’s Family Rips ‘offensive’ Ohio Billionaire Larry Connor for Planning to Take Sub to Site After OceanGate Tragedy.” New York Post, 5 June 2024, nypost.com/2024/06/05/us-news/titanic-survivors-family-rips-offensive-ohio-billionaire-larry-connor-for-planning-to-take-sub-to-site-after-oceangate-tragedy.

Suggested Reading

Behe, George. Fate Deals a Hand: The Slippery Fortunes of Titanic’s Professional Gamblers. History Press, 2023.

Fitch, Tad, et al. On a Sea of Glass: The Life and Loss of the RMS Titanic. 2015.

Lynch, Donald. Titanic: An Illustrated History. Hyperion, 1995.

Titanic News Channel  is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Ohio Billionaire Plans To Dive To Titanic; Harland & Wolff Warnings; Update on Titan Tragedy and more.

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

O’Neill, Natalie. “Ohio Billionaire Larry Connor Plans to Take $20M Sub to Titanic Site to Prove Industry’s Safer After OceanGate Implosion.” New York Post, 28 May 2024, nypost.com/2024/05/27/us-news/ohio-billionaire-plans-to-take-20m-sub-to-titanic-site-to-prove-industrys-safer-after-oceangate-implosion.

Real estate investor Larry Connor, of Dayton, said he and Triton Submarines co-founder Patrick Lahey will plunge more than 12,400 feet (2.3 miles) to the shipwreck site in a two-person submersible. “I want to show people worldwide that while the ocean is extremely powerful, it can be wonderful and enjoyable and really kind of life-changing if you go about it the right way,” Connor told the Wall Street Journal. Lahey has designed a $20 million vessel dubbed the Triton 4000/2 Abyssal Explorer, which Connor said can carry out the voyage repeatedly. The duo said they want to prove that the trek can be done without disaster — despite the implosion of the Titan submersible in June, which killed all five people on board, including OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush.

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Harland & Wolff David and Goliath crane in Belfast, 2006
Plastic Jesus (Dave) via Wikimedia Commons

Titanic Shipbuilder Warns Scottish Yards and 500 Jobs Are at Risk.” The Telegraph, 27 May 2024, www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2024/05/27/titanic-harland-wolff-shipbuilder-warns-scottish-yards-risk.

Struggling shipbuilder Harland & Wolff will be forced to close its yards in Scotland and focus exclusively on work for the Royal Navy if a £200m funding lifeline falls through, bosses have warned. The company – best known for building the Titanic –  is understood to have told workers that in a “worst case scenario”, where it cannot secure a loan guarantee from the Government, the Arnish and Methil facilities will shut, putting around 500 jobs at risk.

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Looby, David. “Kilkenny Titanic Sinking Survivor Is Recalled at Historical Lecture.” Irish Independent, 25 May 2024, www.independent.ie/regionals/wexford/new-ross-news/kilkenny-titanic-sinking-survivor-is-recalled-at-historical-lecture/a1886753959.html.

An interesting and well illustrated lecture on Liam Fitzpatrick, a Kilkenny Titanic survivor, took place recently in Mullinavat parish hall. MaryAnn Vaughan delivered the lecture, which drew a large audience to the hall and also online, via Zoom. William Cecil Fitzpatrick was born on April 26, 1890, exactly 134 years to the day of the lecture, at William Street, Kilkenny, to Robert Fitzpatrick and Mary Gertrude Fitzpatrick (formerly Ryan). Robert and Mary Gertrude were married, in Kilkenny, in September 1895.

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Titan (submersible)
Becky Kagan Schott, OceanGate

Guinness, Emma. “OceanGate Titan Sub: Key Update on Submersible Investigation Ahead of Anniversary of Tragedy That Killed Five.” The Independent, 24 May 2024, www.independent.co.uk/news/people/news/titan-submersible-oceangate-titanic-investigation-b2551060.html.

Now, the Coast Guard has revealed that this investigation is in its “fact-finding” stage almost a year on from the tragedy. A spokesperson for the Coast Guard told The Independent: “The Titan Marine Board of Investigation (MBI) remains in the fact-finding phase of the investigation and is collecting all relevant evidence and information. “A projected completion date is not available. “The latter part of the fact-finding phase will include a public hearing, and the MBI will provide at least 60 days’ notice ahead of the public hearing.”

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Jesse. “Headline.” Cracked.com, 22 May 2024, www.cracked.com/article_42269_5-phrases-from-the-replica-titanic-wikipedia-page-that-merit-closer-inspection.html.

I had no idea there was a Wikipedia entry called Replica Titanic. It does list some of the more prominent ones of recent years, so it is worth a look to see what Cracked is referring to. Clive Palmer still claims to be plugging along with his Titanic 2 venture. Despite all the flurry, parties, and press releases nothing has been built yet. If you want to read the Wikipedia entry without reading the Cracked story, click here.

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TITANIC: The Artifact Exhibition Arrives in Germany This July. 22 May 2024, www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/titanic-the-artifact-exhibition-arrives-in-germany-this-july-302153069.html.

Following sold-out Exhibitions across the United States, Europe, and Oceania, the gripping story of the legendary ship arrives in Germany when TITANIC: The Artifact Exhibition opens its doors in Stuttgart on July 21, 2024. Produced by E/M Group and RMS Titanic, Inc., the Exhibition offers guests the chance to experience Titanic and connect with the stories they’ve encountered in movies or books in a deeply personal way.

Get all the details at  https://titanic-ausstellung.com/.

Uproar on Titanic Memorabilia Auctions

Image: Henry Aldridge & Son/PA Media/dpa

As you will recall, the gold watch that John Jacob Astor had on him when he died was put up for auction and sold for $1.175 million. The Titanic Memorial Lighthouse group posted online (Twitter and probably elsewhere) that they hoped the buyer would put it up for display and not keep it in a private collection.

“We are increasingly uneasy with the auctioning of recovered Titanic family artifacts. We hope John Jacob Astor’s watch now finds its way to a museum and not into the hands of a private collector never to be seen again.” (Titanic Lighthouse Memorial)

Others on the Internet chimed in agreeing with and going further. Some did not understand that such items are not from the Titanic wreck itself and thought salvage laws apply. They do not, of course, since these items were not brought up from the wreck. The auction house, Henry Aldridge & Son, which handles a lot of these auctions, were surprised by the pushback. For their part, they do point out that in many cases the purchaser does elect to put it on public display at a Titanic exhibition or museum. Of course, some may not do that and just add it to their Titanic collection. Both sides have a valid viewpoint.

RMS Titanic beginning sea trials, April 2, 1912.
Public Domain (National Archives and Records Administration,ARC Identifier#306 RG 306)

On one hand, we would like such memorabilia connected to Titanic put on public display. In this case, the watch is made of 14 carat gold, which makes it extremely up there with a Faberge egg in terms of its uniqueness. The other hand is that these items were held in private hands and not part of any public collection (meaning formerly owned by a museum etc.) so we cannot compel a private citizen who purchases such items to put them on display. I know one collector of music who loans out his collection to museums and gets a nice tax break because of it. Hopefully the person who purchased this watch will loan it out to museums. One does not see a 14-carat gold watch every day.

Note: The violin case that held Wallace Hartley’s violin was auctioned off at the same time. It was sold for £290,000 ($361,955). Titanic Memorial Lighthouse has posted this message on Twitter about it:

“As the world’s largest group of Titanic descendants we ask the new owners of Bandleader Wallace Hartley’s valise to reunite it with his violin currently at Titanic Belfast. These unique artifacts must be publicly displayed for future generations to study and enjoy.”

 

Sources:

Khosla, Alanah. “Auction House Hits Back in Row Over Sale of Gold Pocket Watch Recovered From the Body of the Richest…” Mail Online, 30 Apr. 2024, www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-13359381/Auction-house-hits-row-sale-gold-pocket-watch-recovered-body-richest-man-Titanic-1million-fans-claim-museum.html.

Save Titanic Memorial Lighthouse [@TitanicNewYork] BREAKING NEWS! Titanic Bandleader Wallace Hartley’s Violin Case sells for £290,000 / $362,000 in an ‘Internet Bid’. Twitter. https://x.com/TitanicNewYork/status/1784246136691171687