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Life StyleAntique piano from Titanic's sister ship poised for an encore performance

Antique piano from Titanic’s sister ship poised for an encore performance


An antique piano from Titanic’s sister ship set to take center stage once more

An upright piano crafted over a century ago by renowned piano makers Steinway & Sons is poised for a comeback performance, thanks to efforts by music and history lovers to restore this piece of maritime musical heritage to the public. Commissioned in 1912 for the ocean liner RMS Olympic, sister ship of the ill-fated RMS Titanic, the walnut instrument bears serial number 157550 and its origin has recently been verified through records. Currently housed at Besbrode Pianos in Leeds, England, the piano is remarkably well-preserved from its days entertaining passengers aboard the Olympic before being retired over 80 years ago.

A new non-profit organization called the RMS Olympic Steinway Association has taken up the task of acquiring the antique piano and making it available for public appreciation once more. They aim to raise $125,000 to purchase the piano and maintain a facility where history and music buffs can experience the sounds that once floated across the high seas. Only one other piano is known to have survived from the Olympic, a Steinway grand that was auctioned in the 1990s. With no record of its whereabouts since, this upright piano may be the sole remnant left to physically connect us to that bygone maritime era of ocean travel.

Through meticulous research into manufacturer records and period images, details have emerged of this upright’s journey that mirrors many of the Olympic’s famous passengers over the decades. Decoration originally installed to match the liner’s interiors has since been restored. With funding, the association hopes a museum will take ownership to preserve this piece of floating history for generations to come. As its vintage sounds fill the hall once more, listeners will be treated to a glimpse into that glamorous age of transatlantic travel in an engaging sensory experience that continues to keep nostalgia for those “ships of dreams” very much alive.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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