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111-year-old rare artifact from Titanic sells at auction

A menu used four days before the Titanic sank was recently uncovered by the daughter of a Canadian historian.
111-year-old rare artifact from Titanic sells at auction
Posted at 1:39 PM, Nov 13, 2023

An original April 11, 1912, menu from the Titanic was sold at auction last weekend by British auctioneers Henry Aldridge & Son. The final amount was not disclosed, but it was expected to take in over $73,000.

The auctioneers said the menu is the only one known to exist from April 11, four days before the Titanic struck an iceberg and sank in the North Atlantic. The ship would have just departed Cobh, Ireland, when the passengers would have used the menu. 

The menu included oysters, squab a la godard, spring lamb, tournedo of beef a la Victoria, mallard duck and apricots bourdaloue. 

The water-stained menu belonged to Canadian historian Len Stephenson, who died in 2017. The menu was recently discovered among his belongings by his daughter. 

SEE MORE: Why are people so fascinated with the Titanic?

It is unclear how the menu made it off the Titanic and into Stephenson's hands, but it is believed to have been on the body of a person recovered from the wreckage shortly after the Titanic sank. 

"Len was a very well thought-of historian in Nova Scotia, which has strong connections with the Titanic," said auctioneer Andrew Aldridge in a press release. "The body recovery ships were from Nova Scotia, and so all the victims were taken back there. Sadly, Len has taken the secret of how he acquired this menu to the grave with him."

While the April 11 menu is considered one-of-a-kind, Aldridge said some menus from April 14, the night before the Titanic sank, made it off the ship as some passengers still had their menus in their coat pockets. 

"It is a remarkable survivor from the most famous ocean liner of all time," Aldridge said. 

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