COPENHAGEN — It’s said to be the first time “Titanic -The Exhibition” – featuring the world’s most famous maritime disaster – is coming to Denmark. The Titanic exhibition tells the epic story of the disaster, and offers a unique opportunity meet a selected group of individuals who were on board the doomed liner. The exhibition offers a rare glimpse of life on board the sunken ship, and visitors can view reconstructed suites, letters from victims and priceless original artifacts from the lost liner. Besides this there will be a special new section about the 14 Danes who were on board.
The Titanic exhibition can be experienced at the H.C. Andersen Castle at Tivoli from April 10, 2011, a date which also happens to be the 99th anniversary of the ill-fated, unsinkable liner’s departure from Southampton. The exhibition will last until December 30, 2011.
Now the Danes and tourists from all over the world can experience the fates of a number of persons on the Titanic, as the famous ship was going down on the night between April 14 and 15, 1912. The Spanish exhibition, which previously has been shown at several locations in Spain as well as Berlin and Stockholm, has been seen by more than 1.250 000 paying guests, most recently in Pamplona.
Lars Bernhard Jørgensen, Managing Director of Wonderful Copenhagen, says, “Tivoli is already one of Copenhagen’s greatest attractions. Tivoli is unique – on a global scale too – and the guests of our city enjoy many pleasant features of the Tivoli gardens. Hosting an international exhibition benefits Copenhagen as a destination. And no doubt many of the city’s cruise passengers will get a thrill, while at the same time resting assured that safety at sea is taken so much more seriously today.”
At the entrance visitors will be handed an mp3 player, which guides them through the exhibition (Languages: English, Danish, Swedish, German, Spanish, and French). At several points audio- and video presentations enhance the sense of presence during the final hours before the ship plunged to the bottom.
Among the more than 200 original objects from the Titanic visitors will find letters from first officer William Murdoch, a plate from the Third Class dining room, a four pound lump of coal from boiler room No. 1, where all the firemen did their duty till the end. The exhibition offers the opportunity of touching a seven-foot iceberg, and it’s a chilling experience to realize that this is a mere ice cube in comparison with the monster that tore open the Titanic in 1912. Several reproductions of Titanic details are built up in the exhibition; among them a watertight door, a First Class Suite, and a Third Class cabin with four berths. The suite is luxurious, complete with fireplace and silk tapestry. The Titanic offered several suites, and they were so expensive that they were only available to the richest men in the world.
Among the many moving stories in the exhibition is the story of a Swedish couple who did not leave the Titanic in a lifeboat. Instead they jumped into the sea and swam out towards a waterlogged lifeboat. The husband managed to clamber into the boat, his wife, however, was too exhausted after the minutes in the ice cold water. Survivors in the boat tried to hold on to her hand, but finally she let go. The husband was so weak that he died in the lifeboat. More than a month later when the lifeboat was salvaged by the Oceanic the wife’s wedding ring was found in the bottom of the lifeboat. This ring can be seen at the exhibition. Incidentally, the collapsible lifeboat, which the couple had sought for rescue, was constructed by the Dane captain Valdemar Engelhardt.
Hear a Danish Survivor’s Tale
In connection with the large exhibition there will be a section where the story of some of the 14 Danes who were onboard is told. Only two of them survived the disaster. One of them, Jenny Hansen, settled in America. The other was 19-year old Carla Jensen from Fyn, who had paid about 7 £ to cross the Atlantic. Legend has it that for the rest of her life she never slept on the night between April 14 and April 15. She would stay awake with the nightgown she had worn on April 14 1912 placed neatly in front of her on the coffee table. When she died in 1980 she was buried in this nightgown. At the exhibition visitors can hear Carla Jensen’s own story. In a rare Denmark’s Radio interview she tells of the night when her fiancée and their American dream went down with the Titanic.
The Titanic exhibition being presented at Tivoli was founded 35 years ago in Spain by Jesus Ferreiro.
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