While many of us don’t remember what we had for lunch yesterday, we now what the options for lunch were on the last day of the Titanic’s voyage. That’s thanks to a surviving menu that was recently sold at auction for $88,000.
The yellowed document — a luncheon menu for the first-class dining room — is dated April 14, 1912. This means that it details the last-ever gourmet lunch served aboard the ill-fated luxury ocean liner. The menu reveals that, the day before the boat sank to the bottom of the icy North Atlantic Ocean, wealthy passengers dined on “grilled mutton chops,” soused herring and a variety of other delicacies.
The menu was put up for auction last week (Sept. 30), and the 103-year-old piece of paper was expected to bring in about $50,000. But an anonymous buyer shelled out significantly more than that — a whopping $88,000 — for the strange souvenir. Although the identity of the buyer is unknown, he or she may be a descendent of one of the 700 or so people who survived the catastrophic shipwreck, according to Lion Heart Autographs and Invaluable.com, the auction houses that handled the sale.
The sinking of the RMS Titanic occurred on the night of April 14, 1912, four days into the ship’s maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City. The largest passenger liner in service at the time, Titanic had an estimated 2,224 people on board when she struck an iceberg at around 23:40 (ship’s time) Her sinking two hours and forty minutes later resulted in the deaths of more than 1,500 people, which made it one of the deadliest peacetime maritime disasters in history.
The menu survived in the pocket of survivor Abraham Lincoln Salomon. Also sold at the auction was a ticket from the Titanic’s Turkish bath once owned by Salomon and a letter between two other survivors.