Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Now Boarding the RMS Titanic: April 10, 1912

 Last winter, my family and I had the opportunity to go to Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition. We traveled through and got to see real items from the ship and learned several new things (no photography was allowed). They had replicas of what the rooms looked like, and even had a large piece of ice that you could touch that allowed us to sense what the iceberg may have felt like. One of the most memorable parts, though, was getting to touch an actual piece of the Titanic at the very end of the tour. Seeing these items and the accounts from real passengers made it seem so much more real. I think all these years later, many no longer connect or understand the depth of loss this tragedy created.

At the beginning of the exhibit, we were given boarding passes. Each pass had information about a passenger including age, class, reason for being on board, and an interesting fact. At the end of the tour, you got to see whether or not you survived.

We were boarding the ship in Southampton, on 10/April 1912. Below are three of our passes. We were all in third class. I tried to imagine how exciting it must have been to board the ship. From what I've read, even third class aboard the Titanic was much better than any other ship before it.

So many gave up what they had in order to sail on the ship.  Apparently, some people seemed to have a feeling that something would go wrong, but negative thoughts were probably far from the minds of most as they boarded this magnificent "unsinkable" ship.

Here is our photo at the base of the grand staircase. My brother decided to "go explore the ship" (aka he stood on the side because he hates pictures) while we got our picture taken. 21st century clothing just doesn't do the decor justice.

(All images are taken of items I received at the exhibit which was produced by RMS Titanic, Inc., 
A Division of Premier Exhibitions, Inc. Please do not reproduce!)

Exactly 100 years ago, for the very first time, passengers were settling in for the night aboard Titanic. They were probably looking forward to all they would get to experience on this ship. At this point, they'd probably begun making a list in their heads of all of the things they wanted to remember to tell their friends and family about the Titanic once they were back in the United States (or by letter to those back in Europe). How exciting to be a part of this grand ship's maiden voyage...