A new collection of RMS Titanic artefacts have come to light in a Liverpool auction today (April 11, 2012).
The items include a rare lifeboat badge, restaurant card, silver matchbox cover and a rug, which is said to have been wrapped around one of the survivors following the 1912 tragedy.
The collection once belonged to Berk Pickard, a survivor and third-class passenger on board the RMS Titanic when it crashed in to an iceberg on April 15, 1912. All of the items were then bought from Mr Pickard's family 30 years ago.
The rug in particular is deserving of special mention within the collection. Estimated at £8,000-£12,000, the tartan first-class rug bears the initials "WSL" of course meaning White Star Line, the shipping company responsible for the Titanic. It is said to have been in Mr Pickard's possession when he boarded the lifeboat.
Mr Pickard said of his experience on the lifeboat, "I was rather excited, and I said, "It is fortunate that the sea is nice, but perhaps in five minutes we will be turned over." This came during his testimony at the official inquiry on 04 May, 1912.
The restaurant card, printed in Polish, is also expected to bring large figures, with another example bringing £33,000 at auction and a first-class restaurant menu exceeding £76,000 last month. Sales of Titanic memorabilia have always enjoyed success, the event still cemented firmly in the public conscience. Read our previous article for more sale precedents and history from the fateful sinking.
A very rare lifeboat badge is also up for grabs to Titanic collectors. This simple pressed badge is inscribed with Port 18 on a textured background and a vertical pin and clasp to back. The item is estimated at £10,000-£15,000.
The auction is likely to exceed expectations due to its location. Liverpool is the city where the ill-fated ship was registered and also the base for White Star Line, meaning of the workers and their families on board came from the city and the tragedy still resonates there to this day.