Titanic family photograph fetches €2,200 at auction

Thu, Dec 15, 2011, 00:00

A PHOTOGRAPH of a Co Westmeath woman and her five sons who perished in the Titanicdisaster was sold at auction in Dublin yesterday for €2,200.

Margaret Rice (39), a widow, and her sons Albert (10), George (8), Eric (7), Arthur (4) and Eugene (2), from Athlone, all died when the ship sank on April 15th, 1912. The photograph was sold by two of her descendants and was bought by a telephone bidder.

Other items relating to the Titanicalso featured in the sale of rare books and historical memorabilia conducted by Mealy’s auctioneers. An “off-cut” of a woven carpet made for the Titanicby the Abbeyleix Carpet Works factory made €1,000 while a poster signed by English woman Millvina Dean, the last survivor of the sinking who died in 2009, also sold for €1,000.

Earlier in the sale, an original copy of the 1916 Proclamation sold for €55,000. It was sold by descendants of one of the combatants, Murty Tubridy from Co Clare, who had apparently taken it from North King Street.

A batch of typewritten letters signed by Michael Collins as minister for finance in 1920 sold for €14,000, while a previously unpublished letter written about Michael Collins by Lady Lavery in which she praised his “dignity, pride, wisdom, a wonderful beauty of character and qualities of statesmanship that only a few had begun to recognise” sold for €2,000.

Mealy’s said the sale had raised more than €500,000 and that the market for historical memorabilia was “very buoyant”.