Posts Tagged ‘museum’
The story of the doomed ocean liner Titanic has captured the imagination of people all over the world since the day it sank. Halifax, in Nova Scotia, Canada is a largely unknown part of Titanic history.
After the Titanic sank, the White Star Line chartered four ships from Canada to search for survivors. Two of them, the MacKay-Bennett and the Minia, were from Halifax.
Of the 328 bodies recovered from the disaster site, 119 were so badly damaged or deteriorated they were buried at sea. The remaining 209 were brought to Halifax for identification, where possible. 150 of those people were buried in one of three Halifax cemeteries, based on religion (Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish), giving Halifax one of the largest concentrations of Titanic passenger burials in the world.
The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in Halifax houses the largest collection of wooden Titanic artifacts in the world in their permanent exhibit, Titanic: The unsinkable ship and Halifax, which opened in 1998.
One of the centerpieces of the collection is a wooden deck chair, one of the only intact ones in the world known to match those in photos of the ship. A grandchild of Reverend Henry W. Cunningham gave the chair to the museum. Reverend Cunningham received the chair in recognition for his services in conducting many of the sea burials for Titanic victims.
One of the most moving items on display is the log of wireless operator Robert Hunston, from Cape Race, Newfoundland. It is a condensed log of all the distress calls from the ocean liner the night it sank. Reading the log brings home the reality of the disaster and the amazingly short time in which it occurred.