Experiencing A Journey Aboard the Titanic

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I am a Titanic nerd! I love everything to do with the Titanic. Ever since I saw the 1997 Titanic movie when I was 13 years old I love everything about it. I recently had the pleasure of seeing the Titanic Artifact exhibit at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture. Again. I first saw this exhibit when I was 16 years old in Victoria, British Columbia. I was ecstatic when I heard the traveling exhibit was coming to our very own museum!

When you get to the museum you receive a boarding pass. It is the boarding pass for a passenger or crew member that was on the Titanic. It gives you the name, class, and information about that person. When I went recently I was a second class female passenger. My brother and 8 year old nephew went as well. They were both second class male passengers. On my boarding pass it said that I was from Sweden and traveling to Illinois with my fiancé and brother.

The tour stated off with information and pictures from when the ship was built. In the exhibit there were signs with pictures and information about passengers, artifacts, and other information about Titanic and the time period. There was a full scale model of a first class stateroom and a third class room. There was also a model of the boilers that coal was shoveled into to make the ship go.

Then it gets to the sinking. There are paintings by artist and Titanic expert Ken Marschall. There was a chunk of iceberg taken from the North Atlantic so people could feel the iceberg and feel how cold the water was on the night it sank.

As we went through the exhibit my nephew was bombarding me with questions, as all 8 year olds do. He asked about people and about the ship, how it moved and why the ship was built in the first place. I was happy to answer all of his questions. When we got the iceberg my nephew touched it. He held his hand there for only a second and said it was really cold. He asked me how people could have been in that ice cold water for that long. I told him that the people who were not in lifeboats didn’t survive because the water was so cold. He stated to cry a little bit and said that it was really sad.

As you go through the tour there is music and sound effects. At the beginning there are sounds of construction and metal work. Then there is fancy music playing. When it gets to the boilers there are sounds from the movies with men shoveling the coal. The sounds are very soft and faint but very impactful.

Towards the end of the exhibit there were pictures from scientific expeditions to Titanic. There were artifacts that had been brought up with pictures of what they looked like sitting on the ocean floor. With the lighting and the sounds it almost feels like you’re underwater.

At the end there is a list of all the people on board the ship. It is first by class or crew and then if they lived or died. It was very emotional to see just how many people actually died that night. The person I was given did survive. I checked the names of my brother and fiancé from my boarding pass only to discover that they both died. The people that my brother and nephew had both died as well. Chances are if you weren’t a first or second class female you died.

This exhibit is something I love to see over and over again. I feel like I learn something new every time. Even though I know what happens and how it happens I always tear up.


Join our crew as we visit the Titanic exhibit at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture on Jan. 27!

Shannon