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The Titanic Photo by: Google Images

Original telegrams announcing the sinking of the Titanic to go on sale

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The Titanic Photo by: Google Images

“Titanic sank this morning” – this is the message sent by Bruce Ismay the head of the ship’s owner, White Star Line. Marking the tragedies 100th anniversary these Marconi messages will be sold at auction.

The eight messages are expected to sell for $100,000 in New York on 13th December.

Ismay sent these messages to his US office at 1pm on April 15, eleven hours after the Titanic had sunk.

The great ship sunk, at 2.20am on April 15, 1912.

At 4.10 am the Carpathia arrived on the scene and rescued 711 survivors.

The first message contained his full name. The second stated: “Most desirable Titanic crew aboard Carpathia should be returned home earliest moment possible / propose returning her myself please send outfit of clothes including shoes for me to Cedric [a ship]/ have nothing of my own."

One of the responses reads: “So thankful you are saved but grieving with you over terrible calamity... accept my deepest sympathy horrible catastrophe.”

And: "Concise marconigram account of actual accident greatly needed for enlightenment public and ourselves / this is most important."

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All eight of the telegrams were printed on paper with the header: “The Marconi International Marine Communication Company Ltd.” These messages were kept by the staff at White Star Line's New York office.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Marsha Malinowski, from auctioneers Sotheby's said: “The owner thought with the 100th anniversary of the sinking coming up it was a good time to sell.

“They have been kept in an album and are in beautiful condition. They are actually quite chilling because they are very matter-of-fact.

“They had to be written as such because they were telegrams and they are pretty much a statement of facts.

“Ismay sent the first shortly after he was rescued by the Carpathia on April 15 and the others followed until the 18th.

“They discuss getting Titanic staff back home and also mention George Widener, a Philadelphia streetcar magnate who was lost in the sinking."

Bruce Ismay told an official inquiry into the crash that at the moment the Titanic sunk, at 2.20 am on April 15, 1912 he had to look away.

After the tragedy Ismay was treated with opiates to cope with the shock of the sinking. He was led to the doctor’s office on the ship and reportedly did not leave until they arrived to New York.

He was dubbed “The Coward of the Titanic” by the press as he left the sinking ship while women and children perished on board.

Malinowski said: “The disaster had a profound effect on Bruce Ismay who resigned from White Star Line and lived as a recluse in Ireland.”
 

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