Original Titanic Photographs


Mark Nelson

Member
Feb 27, 2004
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I've been searching for original Titanic photographs for quite some time, and have only found a few. Does anyone have any idea how often these surface and just how rare they are? I'm looking for 1 decent photo to add to my collection, and at this point am figuring I may as well bite the bullet and pay the high price next time I come across one...
 
Feb 14, 2011
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I have seen at least 4 unpublished Titanic photos pop up on Ebay in the last 5 years- the average selling pice seems to be in the $5,000 range.
Hands down the best unpublished Titanic photo I have seen-which is one of THE best Titanic photos I have ever seen- was a stern view of Titanic pulling away from Southampton dock.
Not to be confused with an image of the same view in the Ghosts of the Abyss book, which was admitted to be an 'imaginary' photo, but the one Im citing was real.
I just hope the new owner will publish that photo..Its so good it make my knees shake...



regards


tarn Stephanos
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
If there is, my bet is that it's in private hands. Unfortunately, the Titanic didn't get nearly as much attention as the Olympic did. Apparantly, sinking the first time out never occured to anyone so it would seem that nobody felt any special urgency to document everything in sight. Had Titanic survived, I think there would have been a much better photographic record available.

The end result is that most of the photos that are out there are of the Olympic.
 
B

Brian R Peterson

Guest
Hi All,

The lack of authentic Titanic interior photos can be accredited to two major points.

The first being that the ship was never open for public inspection as Olympic was before her Maiden Voyage.

This, combined with the fact that she was only open the press for a brief period of time on sailing day before the passengers boarded, and these tours were all pre-arranged as to what areas would be visited and for how long - so due to this, many photographic opportunities were regrettably missed.

The second reason can be attributed to the fact that Titanic was only in service for four days, so any photos other passengers who did not disembark at Queenstown, may have taken unfortunately went down with the ship. Had the ship made it to New York she would most likely have been open for public inspection and many more interior photos would exist.

However, I have another theory as to why there is such a shortage of photos.

A great historical travesty was committed during the First World War as far as glass plate negatives are concerned.

Not many know of this and I spoke of it in an earlier post about an authentic non Olympic photo of the Titanic Grand Staircase.

Gas masks were a high demand item during WW I due to the frequent use of both Mustard and Chlorine Gas attacks on the part of the both fronts, and one of the main components of these early gas masks were the thick glass goggles for the eyepieces.

To save time and effort, not to mention to deprive the world of ever seeing thousands of rare and unpublished photos, glass plate negatives deemed “unimportant” at the time were donated from archives and the like to the war effort to be used for this purpose.

Due to this, I feel a lot of historically significant photos that could answer a lot of history’s mysteries today were destroyed in this process, the extent of this loss is not fully known as the images were not catalogued or even previewed in most cases before being discarded.

In the worst case scenario, photographic glass negatives dating back to the late1850’s all the way up until 1914 were subject to this loss.

While it is just a theory that can’t be proven one way or another, but I feel may glass plate negatives of the great liners of the era, Titanic and Olympic included, were lost in this process.

Photos that weren’t deemed significant, or were discarded due to being out of focus or damaged.

Despite being damaged or out of focus, photos of areas never before seen on Titanic and Olympic - provided they ever existed, would be invaluable to answering many of today’s interior design questions.

Best Regards,

Brian
 
B

Brian R Peterson

Guest
Hi All,

Here is a drawing I made on commission of the Titanic anchored at Cherbourg - thought I would share
proud.gif


Brian
86842.jpg


Best Regards,
 
B

Brian R Peterson

Guest
Hi Michael,

I emailed the original photo to you in its original size, you may or may not get it depending on your mailbox limit.

Best Regards,

Brian
 

David marbeck

Member
Aug 22, 2004
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hi im david and im new! got a unpublished photo of titanic thats been in the family for years. It is rare I think (dont quote me), it was taken by great grandfather I think it was on April 14th. I always thought it was eerie! It shows a scene in the 1st class lounge in the day and shows a few famous people. I think it's the countess of rothes and mr and mrs astor are in the background but it is a bit blurry. Not very keen on titanic. fallen into my hands and wondering if anyone would like to buy it for wateva they think it might be worth. great grandfather was a amateur photographer and took a few photos on titanic. collecting dust im afraid. anyway dunno what there worth.
david
 
Dec 31, 2003
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Was 'William H HARbeck' actually William H MARbeck? As a 'cinematographer', he would very likely have taken still photographs; as videographers do today. Striking 'frames' were often printed as stills in any case.
 
Dec 8, 2000
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Hello David,
Ditto on what Jason wrote, welcome and all.

Donald, William H Harbeck was definitely 'Harbeck'. He was very well known in early cinema as borne out by the entire chapter devoted to his work in Stephen Bottomore's Titanic and Silent Cinema. Interesting thought though, as there's been a number of 'mistaken identities' related to Titanic, with probably the most notorious being the case of Alice Cleaver.
 
Dec 31, 2003
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Indeed, Fiona, 'William H' was! In a careful way, I was suggesting to David that his *own* surname had been 'Harbeck'; the error (a common enough one) being between 'H' and 'M' - possibly beginning with emigration to Australia. An example I came across once was that of a sailor - whose family was known - signing himself as 'Jams Camel'. I think you may readily guess what the full name of that immigrant [to Canada] really was!
 

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