More than 100 years after the RMS Titanic collided with an iceberg and sank in the North Atlantic Ocean, the ill-fated ocean liner still fascinates us. There's the 1997 Kate Winslet-Leonardo DiCaprio movie, the documentaries, the books, the exhibits—the list goes on. And since the discovery of the Titanic shipwreck in 1985, thousands of artifacts have also been added to our knowledge of the ocean liner. But while most of us know about the ship’s descent to the bottom of the ocean, less people know about what it was like to be onboard the ocean liner's maiden voyage.
One of the things people enjoy most about cruises are the meals, and menus from the Titanic show that passengers from first class on down ate well. Third class passengers, who mainly included immigrants seeking new lives in America, dined on roast beef and gravy for dinner on April 14, 1912, the day that the Titanic began to sink.
We don’t know what second-class passengers ate on the Titanic’s last day, but a breakfast menu from April 11th has surfaced. Mid-tier passengers enjoyed a wide variety of breakfast options, from rolled oats to various meats and eggs.
The first-class passengers included many of the most well-known members of high society in New York and London, and the Titanic’s top-tier food service reflected that. The luncheon menu on April 14th, the day of the sinking, consisted of chicken dishes, grilled items, a cheese course, and a fully stocked meat buffet.
Other artifact’s from the Titanic have also been retrieved from the shipwreck over the years, including this assortment of American cash. Though most of the bills are at least somewhat similar to current US currency, there are definite differences. The one-dollar bill, for instance, is marked “one silver dollar.”
This unsold third-class ticket shows the London address of the White Star Line, the company that operated the Titanic, as well as the date of departure: April 10, 1912.
This violin is in remarkable condition, all things considered. Wallace Hartley, the ship’s bandleader, played it with the band as the Titanic filled with water and began to sink. Hartley and the rest of the band all died in the tragic event.
Other aspects of life on board the Titanic can be be gathered from press photos and lithographs from before the “unsinkable” ship’s maiden voyage. For example, the cruise liner was outfitted with the era’s most cutting-edge exercise machines.
At the time, the Titanic was the height of modern luxury, making it an appealing place to see and be seen. Thus, the first-class passengers included many of most well-known members of high society in New York and London. The ship’s Grand Staircase was designed for them. Now it’s still visible on the bottom of the ocean as a spooky reminder of the ship’s fate.
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