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Titanic’s timeless artifacts on display in Texas

An exhibit on luxury ocean liner opens at Waco museum

Jeff+Huckeby+readies+a+replica+of+a+First-Class+state+room+at+the+Titanic+exhibit+May+30+at+Baylor+University%27s+Mayborn+Museum+in+Waco%2C+Texas.+The+exhibit+features+more+than+150+objects+found+during+deep-sea+expeditions+to+the+wreck+site+in+the+north+Atlantic+Ocean%2C+supplemented+by+replica+items%2C+rooms%2C+a+frozen+iceberg+wall%2C+videos+and+displays.
Jeff Huckeby readies a replica of a First-Class state room at the Titanic exhibit May 30 at Baylor University's Mayborn Museum in Waco, Texas. The exhibit features more than 150 objects found during deep-sea expeditions to the wreck site in the north Atlantic Ocean, supplemented by replica items, rooms, a frozen iceberg wall, videos and displays.

Jeff Huckeby readies a replica of a First-Class state room at the Titanic exhibit May 30 at Baylor University's Mayborn Museum in Waco, Texas. The exhibit features more than 150 objects found during deep-sea expeditions to the wreck site in the north Atlantic Ocean, supplemented by replica items, rooms, a frozen iceberg wall, videos and displays.

ROD AYDELOTTE / Waco Tribune-Herald

ROD AYDELOTTE / Waco Tribune-Herald

Jeff Huckeby readies a replica of a First-Class state room at the Titanic exhibit May 30 at Baylor University's Mayborn Museum in Waco, Texas. The exhibit features more than 150 objects found during deep-sea expeditions to the wreck site in the north Atlantic Ocean, supplemented by replica items, rooms, a frozen iceberg wall, videos and displays.

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WACO, Texas — The tragic 1912 sinking of the luxury ocean liner RMS Titanic with the loss of some 2,200 passengers is a story that still captivates modern-day imaginations.

The Waco Tribune-Herald reports that within that story are countless stories, inspired by the passengers on board and the items recovered from the ship’s ruins. Visitors to the Mayborn Museum will discover these stories beginning Saturday as the nationally touring “Titanic: The Artifacts Exhibition” opens a seven-month run.

The exhibit features more than 150 objects found during deep-sea expeditions to the wreck site in the north Atlantic Ocean, supplemented by replica items, rooms, a frozen iceberg wall, videos and displays.

It’s a Greek tragedy … a timeless story. It affects people in different ways.”

— Alexandra Klingelhofer, vice president of collections for Atlanta-based Premiere Exhibitions Inc.

Visitors will start with the construction of the ship. They will relive the short few days on the inaugural voyage from Southhampton, England, to New York, then witness its fatal collision with an iceberg, followed by the sinking in which only a third of the passengers survived.

“It’s a Greek tragedy … a timeless story,” said Alexandra Klingelhofer, vice president of collections for Atlanta-based Premiere Exhibitions Inc. “It affects people in different ways.”

The exhibit, one of several Titanic-related shows mounted and operated by Premiere Exhibitions, Inc., may set the Mayborn Museum on a voyage of its own. Mayborn officials consider it their first blockbuster exhibit — a subject of national interest. They anticipate audiences to require new procedures of timed tickets, advance purchases, entry line management, overflow parking and the like.

Tickets for specific dates and times can be purchased online, but tickets also can be purchased on-site for the next available time, with a waiting area for those needing to wait until entry.

Many of the Mayborn’s past touring exhibitions were set up within a week of their opening, but installing “Titanic: The Artifacts Exhibition” took its crew 17 days, four of which spent on installing trusses and lighting.

The artifacts were chosen to show passengers’ experience on the White Star Lines’ luxury liner as well as individual stories connected with specific items. To make that connection to individual stories, exhibit tickets resembling boarding passes will have a passenger’s name. A wall of survivors’ names at the end of the exhibit will allow visitors to see if their passenger was one of the 705 who survived. “It just brings all that home,” said Klingelhofer, who oversees the Mayborn installation.

A reconstructed first-class cabin features a standard sized bed, desk and chair, sofa, wooden table and chairs with electric lights in wall sconces, all done in Dutch Modern interior with dark red walls. Missing from it all is the name Titanic — rather than brand items for each of its three luxury liners, the Olympic, the Titanic and the Britannic, the steamship company put its name and logo on everything.

“Nothing says Titanic. They were ordering for three huge ships,” Klingelhofer noted.

The exhibit runs through Jan. 6.

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Titanic’s timeless artifacts on display in Texas