Body photograph Auction


Mike Poirier

Member
Dec 31, 2004
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On EBAY-
They are now auctioning off "original" photos of the "bodies" from the Titanic.
And I thought the person selling the fake plate or the person who was selling rust from the artifacts was low.
Oh, well
Mike
 
C

Christine Geyer

Guest
Just had the morning-shock myself when I checked eBay along with my first cup of coffee. This is so sad... Anyway I wonder where this pictures has emerged at all and how it came into the hands of such a person.

Christine
 
Dec 12, 1999
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The picture of the woman looked like her face was bashed in. Assuming this is genuine (where did they get it?), the photo seems to corroborate what other members have said (e.g., Bill De Sena) about the likelihood that victims would have experienced extreme physical trauma at the time of the sinking.
 
May 8, 2001
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Mike: You think this is lower than the Titanic capped skull they had for sale???? At least this is REAL, and look at the possibilities that with these photos, an identity may come out of it, and after all these years the number will have a name, and relatives will be able to know for sure that their loved one was buried.

We all know that these photos are out there somewhere, and have asked "What happened to them?" and I only know of a few, and those were published in the Eaton book. I have a feeling that these will trickle in when we least expect it. Sadly this is a grim chapter of Titanic, but a chapter none the less..........

Although it was tacky and disrespectful to put them up for sale on E-bay with the photos without warning for all to stare at!! It should have been an "Email me if you wish to see a photo" type thing!!

Thoughtfully:
Colleen
 

Jim Kalafus

Member
Dec 3, 2000
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Kate: They are available as a "buy it now" at $7200 (each) for some morbidly obsessed person who HAS to have them immediately, but can be had for as little as $2500 each (the starting bid)if one is a skillful last minute bidder. Either way, it is about as distasteful as it gets.

Isn't the woman, #8, the one who was eventually identified as Wendla Heinenen?
 

Jim Kalafus

Member
Dec 3, 2000
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I just checked and, answering my own question, yes #8 is of an IDENTIFIED body, and yes it is the unfortunate Miss Heinenin.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
Hi Colleen, maybe somebody can pull something off in identifying an unknown this way, but somehow, I doubt it. 89 years after the fact, it's not all that probable that there is anyone still above ground who could do it. It's not impossible, but not likely either. In any event, if that's the real concern, why doesn't the owner just publish the lot and hope for the best?

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
May 8, 2001
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I was unaware that it was a "known" photo. I was sort of hoping if anything it would be a lead. I thought that THS helped in identifying several unidentified graves.
James, how did you get the information? Is it the writing that I was unable to make out in the photo?
Colleen
 
Jul 10, 2005
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On to better things, has anyone seen the TITANIC RELIEF FUND CHECK - Feb 26, 1917 ???

item=1184286516

Or the WHITE STAR LINE ORIGINAL TITANIC OLYMPIC 1912 passenger list.

item=1184405438

Or the ORIGNAL AMERICAN TITANIC MOVIE POSTER 1953

item=1459557596

I haven't run across the photos yet.

Beverly
 
Apr 11, 2001
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These photos must be some of those stolen from the archive in Halifax- I remember Haas and Eaton saying some of the info that had been in boxes when they first started their research which was sponsored by Arnie Watson (Roster of Valor)- was gone missing on a subsequent trip. Same thing happened to the Bayonne New Jersey cache. I wonder what else has been purloined for a private gallery or profit over time -sad to contemplate...
 

Jim Kalafus

Member
Dec 3, 2000
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Colleen- For no evident reason, the connection between #8 and Wendla Heinenin was stuck in my head, so after I posted that question I checked out her entry here on ET and was able to confirm what I already half-remembered. Just why I recalled that I have no idea.

Somewhere in the ET message board archives there is a detailed account as to what became of the unidentified dead photos. I am hazy on the specifics, but as I recall there is one fairly large cache of them somewhere, and a few smaller collections elsewhere, but that no one complete set still exists. I may be wrong on that last point, but I am relying on a year old memory of something I read once. I believe that it is also mentioned, in that thread, that multiple sets of those photos might have been run to be sent to White Star agencies. If such was the case then the eBay items might not be purloined.
 
Sep 20, 2000
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Apparently I'm not the first to notice that one of those two "For Sale" victims is not at all anonymous! Victim # 8, the woman whose Halifax morgue photo is "up for grabs" on Ebay has indeed been identified as Wendla Maria Heininen as the result of "recent research". (See ET Biography.)

Can anyone here shed further light on the exact circumstances which led to this identification? I assume the marking of the stone itself indicates pretty irrefutable evidence that her identity is clearly established. (But please advise me if I'm wrong on that.) Most importantly, are there *existing* family members who contributed to this identification?

I ask because I feel that the hawking of a *known* victim's death photo may be fairly reprehensible. (Not that a morgue photo auction is all that ethically appealing to begin with.) It does seem that the family, if any still exists, should certainly have been offered the right of first refusal (gratis, preferably). Additionally -- from what I've read above -- the seller may be "in receipt of stolen goods", though I'm not prepared to pursue that without hard evidence.

I've attempted to contact the seller with this information, but I do not have an Ebay account (required to even ask a question!) and cannot obtain one without providing full personal information -- something I'm not willing to do at this juncture.

Regards,
John Feeney
 
M

Micheal Napier

Guest
I have never been to ebay before today, and I was amazed on how much titanic stuff (mostly junk) they have to sell. I must admit as horrible or as tastless as selling those photos are, perhaps someone should send them to RMST Inc. and perhaps they may realise why people have a problem with some of the things they do.

Mike
 

Brian Meister

Member
Mar 1, 2001
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John,

The identification of Wendla Maria Heininen
was made in the late eighties and her stone was
marked by Titanic International in a 1991 ceremony. In that service, six of the stones from
the Titanic plot were engraved with the identifications made since the list of effects
were circulated amongst several people researchers
a couple of years prior. The currency in her pocket and the initials found on her clothing led
primarily to her being identified.
Several of the many idenifications made were
very simple, and one would think that they could
have been made in 1912 if communication processes
had been better.

Hope this helps,

Brian Meister
 
Sep 20, 2000
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Jim Kalafus:

I located what's probably the thread you were referring to -- ET Message Board: Archive (Passengers and Crew): Pictures of the Titanics Dead

I also noticed that Steve Santini therein referred to two morgue photos held by a private individual at the time, and wondered whether this recent auction might be the two he had in mind. If so, he might be able to comment on their legitimacy. Steve?

Brian:

Thanks very kindly for that information. That "recent research" reference in the ET Bio of Miss Heinenin had me thinking that possibly someone similar to Rob Daniel (who recently found his relative Walter Perkis) was about to get a very nasty Ebay shock. Nice to know that this news is a bit older, and that perhaps the family was not involved and may not be needlessly disturbed by this auction.

Regards to all,
John
 

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