It's hard to imagine being a Titanic researcher without having the internet

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Jan 7, 2002
Thank god for the internet- It has given rise to sites such as ET and Ebay, where Titanic information and collectables once seemingly unattainable are now just a click away.....
I was thumbing through the Gracie book the other day, and wondered how on earth Gracie was able to accumulate so much information about who was in which boat, without the benifit of computer technology-

Historians of the past continue to leave me in awe.For my fellow Titanic buffs who remember the days before the internet- how did you research Titanic, and how did you collect your rare Titanic collectables?
I collect rare Titanic books- so like a fisherman waiting for a bite, I'd frequent a local antiquarian bookstore, hoping for the days when rare Titanic books would come in stock- and sure enough they would-but it was pure luck....I would draw much of my knowledge of the Titanic story from the Beesley and Gracie books.....
Now I can find multiple copies of once rare Titanic books a click away on Ebay..
Remember the days of looking at 1912 newspapers under microfilm?
The Boston Public Library had the bound US Senate Titanic Inquiry- and I would spend hours in the library reading the 1st person accounts of the Titanic sinking...

Of course when Ebay appeared, obtaining an original 1912 US Senate Titanic hearings book was fairly simple...
Sometimes I wonder if the internet has spoiled us us...The days of frequenting the library seem a thing of the past....I once spent all my time at the library- now I see no point for Titanic buffs to frequent any library, as all the information they need is readily available online.

BUT there are some Titanic buffs who shun computer technology, and prefer to do their Titanic research at the library. How about you?


Tarn Stephanos

Jason D. Tiller

Aug 20, 2000
Niagara Falls, Ontario
I alternate between the two, since not every newspaper article regarding Titanic or any other ship disaster for that matter can be found online. So, you have to make a trip to the library. Plus, I like to get out of my apartment once and a while.

But thanks to people like Mark Baber, Julie Dowen, Inger Sheil, Shelley Dziedzic, myself (excuse me while I toot my own horn for just a second and my apologies if I've forgotten anyone), reading old newspapers from the microfilm has slowly become an online feature in the past few years. There's certainly a lot of them through here.

You can't do with one, while not having the other. But that's my personal opinion, your results may vary.

Inger Sheil

Feb 9, 1999
Jason raises a good point, Tarn. There are plenty of records that are not yet digitalised (although many of us are involved in efforts to present them in accessible digital format.

In recent weeks I've spent a lot of time seeking information on a particular voyage of a WSL vessel, and a prominent Australian who sailed. Not of this information was available online - it's a case of back to the archival material on microfilm.

Researchers have a number of tools available to them - and the old fashioned method of writing letters and enclosing a SASE still has its place! Not everyone is yet solely on e-correspondence.
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