File this under, “How cool is this?”
The violin owned by the bandleader, who was one of the 1500 who died as the Titanic sank, has been found and authenticated. It took seven years, according to an article by BBC News. After seven years, the violin is said to have belonged to Wallace Hartley, whose orchestra famously played on as the ship sank in 1912. According to the article:
“There have been various theories about what happened to the instrument which range from it floating away to being stolen by someone involved in handling the bodies of the deceased. A violin was returned to Wallace Hartley’s fiancee Maria Robinson, in Bridlington in East Yorkshire, and a transcript of a telegram dated 19 July 1912 to Canada’s Provincial of Nova Scotia was found in her diary. It said: “I would be most grateful if you could convey my heartfelt thanks to all who have made possible the return of my late fiance’s violin.” ”
There’s no way of knowing how the violin made it back to land, safely and in one piece. But Titanic memorabilia collectors excitedly claim that the instrument will claim six figures when auctioned. The date has yet to be set.