The top lot of the sale of Titanic and White Star memorabilia was a pair of brass plaques from the lifeboats that carried survivors of the ill-fated liner to the rescue ship Carpathia. The 12 x 2in (30 x 5cm) pair were estimated at £50,000-70,000 in the sale on October 20 and sold at a hammer price of £70,000 (plus 24% buyer’s premium).
Titanic’s lifeboats were dismantled after Carpathia had safely docked in New York. According to a catalogue entry at Christie’s, where the pair sold in 1999, they had descended through the family of a New York city policeman who had acquired them in 1912. All of Titanic’s lifeboats displayed the SS Titanic name boards on each side of the bow, with White Star Line house flags on the port side and Liverpool signs on the starboard.
A poster advertising the return journey of the Titanic is very rare because White Star Line destroyed as many as they could find after the fateful maiden voyage of the infamous ship. The poster actually features an image of the Olympic, the Titanic’s sister ship that was often used for promotional material, as well as an interior view of a Third Class cabin and the Third Class dining facility. It was offered with an estimate of £60,000–80,000 and was hammered down at a below-estimate £50,000.
An 18ct gold Tiffany & Co pocket watch, stamped no 40198 is inscribed to the inside of the case Presented to Captain Rostron with the heartfelt gratitude and appreciation of three survivors of the Titanic April 15 1912 Mrs John B. Thayer, Mrs John Jacob Astor and Mrs George D. Widener.
The lunch where the watch was presented to Captain Rostron is recorded in the New York Times, dated Sunday, June 2, 1912. Estimated at £25,000-30,000, it reached a hammer price of £55,000.
A First Class menu dated April 10, 1912, from the first dinner after leaving Southampton, was estimated at £45,000-55,000 and sold at £50,000. It originally sold at Henry Aldridge & Son in 2002 by direct descent.
It had been the property of First Class Steward Charles Casswell and was posted to his wife, Hilda, from Queenstown in Ireland on April 11, 1912, before he died in the disaster on April 15.