The Grand Old Lady : LUSENET : TitanicShack : One Thread

Hello All My Friends:

I had the occassion to contact a friend in Michigan tonight who I had not talked to in some time and who I met through the Cyberflix "Titanic : A Ship Out Of Time" game. In my note to him, I related an experience that I recently had and one that, I believe, I will remember for the rest of my life. We all have seen this great film a number of times and will see it many more times. However, the Titanic herself will outlive that as she has outlived other films on this subject over the years. This experience, which I will quote in this note, is something that I wish everyone on this list could have. If the opportunity arises, run, don't walk, to see it for whatever you think of RMSTI, remember this:

-- Peter Nivling (, November 06, 1998


(continued) Remember this:

".....before you realize it, you're living with her. Before you realize it, you're married to her. And let me tell you something: There is no divorcing the Titanic. Ever."
   -Dr. Robert Ballard

So I quote what I sent to my friend and apologize for the fragmented message......

A couple of weeks ago, I was able to see the Titanic Artifact Exhibition at the World Trade Center in Boston. Now, I know that I have stated before that I do not support the salvage operation that has been going on at the Titanic site. However, having studied this event for 40 years, I could not resist the chance, probably a once in a lifetime chance, to get this close to my ship. I had the opportunity to do so as a guest of someone else and I felt that whether I see this or not, my visit will have no bearing on what RMST, INC does so I went and I am damned glad I did. I spent upwards of 2 hours in there and could have spent 2 hours more, easily. The displays were well presented and well taken care of (my main concern). This stuff is haunting. To name a few: the masthead light from the forward mast, jewelry, a full suit of clothes, a huge porthole, glass cracked but intact, a steward's white jacket (he was lost), one set of the ship's whistles, mounted on the wall and four feet high (largest ever made), a piece of a fuse panel with three of the nameplates still on it, one of which emblazoned with "watertight door bells", Major Arthur Peuchen's wallet and the money it contained, a third class suitcase about the size of a trunk which probably contained everything this person owned, a davit arm (which you could touch, felt very cold) and a multitude of other items. Oh yes, one more extremely haunting item: a gold pocket watch with a roman numeral face and a little rust on the crystal and the hands stopped at 2:16! Having seen that, I said to myself that this cannot get anymore intense. Well, I was wrong. At the end of the exhibit, in a seperate room, was the "big piece". I had seen pictures but was not prepared for what I saw in person. Here, filling this room was Titanic, or at least a piece of her. It was absolutely huge. We were free to touch it and I did so. I saw and felt the rivets and the hull plates. That was the inside of the ship. The piece was set up at about a 30 degree angle, upright so you could completely walk around it. Once at the outside position, I looked up, and seeing the portholes thought to myself: This is what the people in the lifeboats saw as they were being lowered. Wow, what an experience! When I was done, I had two very small pieces of rust on my hands (they will remove this anyway when they do the restoration) and I have these two "little pieces" in my home and, in that, I have the Titanic in my home: the real thing, after all these years. What I have related here are but a very few of the items I saw and I can tell you, there is no equal, in my opinion, to being this close to this grand ship and her story.


{added some line breaks}

-- Peter Nivling (, November 06, 1998.

I'm very happy for you, Peter, really ...

-- Dan Draghici (, November 07, 1998.

Peter, Thanks for the terrific piece on your Titanic experience. I saw "Titanic: The Exhibition" in July 1997 in Memphis and was blown away by it!!! And that was "sans The Big Piece." I certainly can relate to the powerful feelings you experienced being able to touch the Big Piece and retain those small particles for yourself. I've been there....when I've been close to items relating to several of my other interests. Thanks again for sharing.

-- Kathleen Marcaccio (, November 07, 1998.

Thanks for sharing your story Peter!! I got goosebumps just reading what you wrote!

-- Courtney (, November 07, 1998.

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