The well-known tragedy of the sinking of the RMS Titanic, considered unsinkable, is a haunting story. It was en route to New York City when it hit a large iceberg and sunk, taking over 1,500 lives with it. In September 1985, when the wreckage was found, letters written by Titanic passengers were also discovered. These letters were intended to be sent to their loved ones upon arrival in New York, and the following are selected passages from these letters.
“If all goes well we will arrive in New York Wednesday A.M.”
“This boat is giant in size and fitted up like a palatial hotel!”
“I’ve been quite alright — but now feel dead tired & more fit for bed than anything. Have to go to dinner-tea in half an hour.”
“Mr. Peters spent about an hour on the vessel + they might easily have spent another without waste of time.”
“Mr and Mrs John Jacob Astor is on this ship,” it reads. “He looks like any other human being even though he has millions of money. They sit out on deck with the rest of us…”
“The first class apartments are really magnificent & unless you had first seen them you would think the second class were the same.”
“I think I’d best try & get some postcards of the vessel.”
“Must clear & have a wash now,” she wrote. “Will pop this in the post in case I’m sea sick tomorrow. PW brought a box of chocolates ‒ shouldn’t wonder if I’m like Jim Buss & get it the other way. Give my love to all enquirers ‒ must go.
Much love Kate.”
“The sailors say we have had a wonderful passage up to now. There has been no tempest. It is very nice weather but awfully windy and cold.”
“Heaps of love and kisses to all from Eva.”
“I am always shutting my eyes and I see everything as I left it, I hope you are all quite well. Let this be an all sound letter as I can’t write properly to all till I can set my foot on shore again.”
Chilling. These little glimpses really remind us that, while we remember The Titanic as this grand spectacle that ended in horor, there were REAL people on board.