Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Titanic: How the Captain's table escaped a watery grave

Colin Cobb's Titanic Walking Tours. The pump house at Thompson graving dock.
Colin Cobb's Titanic Walking Tours. An original keel block from the Thompson graving dock
Lunch menu from the RMS Titanic.

Visitors to the grand 1895 HQ of the Harbour Commissioners in Corporation Square, Belfast, can view an Edwardian mahogany table and Queen Anne style chairs that should by rights be at the bottom of the North Atlantic.

Designed by cabinetmaker Gilbert Logan at Harland & Wolff’s workshop, they were intended for the private quarters of the Titanic’s captain, Edward John Smith. However, because of a late delivery, they never reached their destination.

The table would have been fixed to a base to prevent movement at sea but, in the event, the only calamity to befall these fine pieces was to languish unloved in a store cupboard before finding a good home.

The Antiques Roadshow found them literally priceless, because of their history, and didn't give them a cash valuation on their visit to the Titanic Quarter in 2009.

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