A historic collection of thousands of items from the Titanic could be set to go on sale as part of an impressive auction of memorabilia, after the exhibition company went bankrupt.
The tragic story of the Titanic has captured the attention of people across the world since the terrible accident in 1912 that caused the ship to sink 3km below the sea, killing more than 1,500 of its 2,200 passengers.
Now, the collection of the vessel’s memorabilia could be separated for the final time, as the company holding the rights to the ship and its artefacts reportedly works to claw its way out of debt. The future of the collection was debated in a bankruptcy court in Jacksonville, Florida, US, on Thursday, with a judge considering plans for possible future auctions.
A passenger’s three-diamond ring and a suitcase full of clothes owned by William Henry Allen, an English toolmaker immigrating to America, are just some of the other fascinating items ready to be auctioned.
Read more: A look back at the tragic sinking of the Titanic, exactly 106 years on
Among those looking to take home a piece of history is award-winning director James Cameron, who shared the devastating story of Titanic’s sinking with millions in 1997 in his movie of the same name.
However, he will have to fight with others for the valuable items with US hedge funds, Chinese investors and British museums all reportedly vying for part of the ship’s history.
While it’s an exciting time for some, oceanographer David Gallo, who joined an expedition to the wreck in 2010, didn’t seem as impressed with the auction and the decision to offload parts of the ship.
“It’s just sad to see that great ship of dreams, and the pieces of it, bounced around like an orphaned child,” he told Traveller.
April this year marked 106 years since the the “unsinkable” ship crashed into an iceberg, ending the lives of thousands of passengers. The wreck wasn’t discovered until 1985, more than 70 years after the disaster, and despite several missions to investigate what’s left of the once majestic vessel – it remains on the seabed.
The final survivor of the sinking, Millvina Dean, who was aged just two months when she boarded the ship – sadly died in 2009 at the age of 97.