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    Titanic Treasures: A Collector’s Obsession for a Lost Liner

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    Over a century after its tragic demise, the RMS Titanic continues to capture the imagination. This fascination extends to a dedicated group of collectors, ready to spend staggering sums on artefacts from the “Ship of Dreams.”

    A Gold Watch Fetches a Record Price

    A recent auction by Henry Aldridge & Son in southwest England saw a gold watch, once belonging to businessman John Jacob Astor (identified by the initials JJA), sell for a whopping £1.17 million. This shatters the pre-auction estimate of £100,000-£150,000, highlighting the enduring allure of Titanic memorabilia.

    Beyond Memorabilia: A Collector’s Spectrum

    While some collectors seek general Titanic artefacts, others delve deeper.

    • Thematic Collections:
    •  According to Andrew Aldridge, managing director of Henry Aldridge & Son, some focus on specific passenger classes or nationalities, like Scandinavians.
    • Individual Stories:
    •  Collectors like Tony Probst prioritize preserving passenger stories through everyday items like sheet music, china, and documents.

    A Community of Deep Pockets and Deep Passions

    David Scott-Beddard, chair of the British Titanic Society, acknowledges the community’s size, particularly among high-value buyers. Bidding wars can erupt, with some collectors driven by a desire to outbid competitors discreetly.

    Biennial Sales Keep the Legacy Alive

    Henry Aldridge & Son has hosted biannual Titanic auctions since the late 1990s. These sales cater to this passionate community, offering a chance to acquire a piece of history, be it a coveted timepiece or a document whispering a passenger’s story.

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