The Titanic Artefact

Seamus, a tour guide with the Museum with many years’ experience, tells the story of …. the only existing electrical bulb most likely from the RMS TITANIC.

In the late 70s, early 80s, a Belfast gentleman came to the Museum. Dr. Philip Smyly, the museum curator at the time, met the gentleman who handed over to Dr. Smyly the electric bulb stating that it was from the RMS Titanic. Dr. Smyly was a little sceptical as the gentleman had no paperwork or documents indicating provenance of the artefact. Having researched and investigated this claim, it appears that, in fact, there is some truth in this story. The story as told by the gentleman….

The gentleman stated his father was a painter in Harland and Wolffe (Belfast) Ltd, shipyard in 1912.Whilst his father was finishing off some painting to the doors and cabinets of the interior, an electrician arrived and replaced a fitting overhead that was faulty. He put the old bulb back into the cardboard tube and turned to the painter saying something along the lines ‘here’s a souvenir of this ship’, not knowing how important that would be. The painter threw the encased bulb into his tool box and thinking nothing of it, left it in his shed at home.

The Titanic Artefact
Photo by NOAA on Unsplash