Archive for June, 2013

Book signing at Titanic museum in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

June 13, 2013
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I signed books on June 8 in the museum in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. The gift shop there has an extensive array of Titanic books.

I was invited to do a book signing the weekend of June 8-9 at the Titanic museum in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. The museum has been carrying our book since March as it gets a number of visitors from the Midwest. This museum, and its companion in Branson, Mo., features artifacts and memorabilia about the Titanic loaned from personal collections along with re-creations of areas on the ship, such as the grand staircase, first-class stateroom and the bridge. A highlight of the exhibit while I was there was the temporary display of the long-lost Wallace Hartley violin. It will go on to the Branson location after leaving Pigeon Forge before being auctioned in October. The violin, in its case, was found strapped to Hartley’s body when it was recovered after the disaster. He was one of the musicians who played on deck as the ship went down. The band was reported by many to have played “Nearer My God, to Thee.” The violin was sent back to his fiancee in England and remained with her descendants over the years until one of them contacted the Aldridge auction house in England. It took seven years for experts to authenticate the violin. It bears a metal plate stating, “For Wallace On the occasion of our engagement From Maria.” To read more about it, check out the press release  on the home page of the museum. Other highlights that are part of the permanent collection are the Father Browne photos (he was a priest and amateur photographer who got on board at Southampton and got off in Queenstown (now Cobh), Ireland, taking with him the only images of the maiden voyage).There is also a gallery on the James Cameron film, with several actual costumes from the movie on display. Here are a few photos of the exterior of the museum (no photos allowed inside).  — Mary Ann

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The ticket office and gift shop entrances are in a replica of a White Star Line building.

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Looking straight on at the bow of Titanic as the ship appears to be heading right for you. The fatal iceberg is on the left and the White Star Line building is on the right. That’s real water and spray from the bow.

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Looking up at the replica of the ship from this vantage point almost makes you feel like you are dockside in Southampton waiting to get on board.


Titanic artifact exhibit back in Cleveland

June 13, 2013
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A light-projection image of the sinking Titanic greets visitors to the Great Lakes Science Center as they enter from the parking garage.

The Titanic artifact exhibit opened on June 1 at the Great Lakes Science Center in Cleveland, Ohio; it will remain until Jan. 5.  About 10 of us area Titanic buffs met there to tour the exhibit.  I thought the highlight was seeing the crow’s nest bell. It is very effectively presented, in a darkened space, with the recorded sounds of a ship’s bell playing softly in the background. The science center also has installed a nice display about the Northeast Ohio Titanic connections, with wall panels highlighting the stories of nearly a dozen of the people who were traveling to this region on the Titanic. These are on the wall just as you exit the exhibit space. Of course our group had to gather by the Ohio Titanic Memorial, which is just outside the science center, for a group photo. I’m also pleased to announce that the Titanic gift shop associated with the exhibit is carrying our book. Here are a few more pictures from the day.  — Mary Ann

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This banner hangs above the escalator in the Great Lakes Science Center.

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The wind gave most of us a “bad hair day” as we posed for a photo by the Ohio Titanic Memorial outside the Great Lakes Science Center.