Titanic centennial is commemorated in U.S. museums

Titanic frenzy is picking up steam. One hundred years ago on April 12 the Titanic sailed and sank, but people are still fascinated by the fateful journey and stories of people who sailed on its maiden voyage.

To commemorate the importance of this historic event, as well as celebrate the city’s industrial and maritime heritage, the private Titanic Foundation Ltd. in Belfast, Northern Ireland, has been building a museum of epic proportions in the city where the ship was built and launched. The $126.5 million complex is set to open March 31, 2012. The gleaming, iconic, six-story silver building was built to resemble the Titanic as it stood in the boatyard, ready to wow the world.

Titanic Museum in Belfast under construction

In some ways there’s a connection for Americans with our own tragedy on September 11, 2001. The enormous loss of life and delay in figuring out what was happening is reminiscent of that disaster. Just as for 9/11, for years after the Titanic sank, the effect was felt in the U.S., changing laws regarding lifeboats on ocean liners, communication about disasters, and shifting southward the standard path for ships crossing the Atlantic.

Belfast harbor where the Titanic was launched in April 1912.

If you love Titanic tales but can’t get to Belfast, Titanic museums in the U.S. are also providing exceptional experiences for visitors, immersing them in this stunning event from an historical and personal standpoint. Titanic museums telling the timeless story remain premier tourist attractions—this year and in the future–wherever they are located.  Here are just a few to check out:

Indian Orchard, Massachusetts—Home of the world-famous Titanic Historical Society Collection, the original commemorative venue with one of the finest collections of rare survivor artifacts. In the museum you can relive authentic 1912 events, see Titanic legends come to life, and view historical treasures.

Orlando, FloridaTitanic, the Experience features a 20,000 square-foot interactive museum with a full scale recreation of the ship’s Grand Staircase, Verandah Café, and trained actors in period costumes portraying famous Titanic notables. Original memorabilia from Titanic movies is also on display.

Pigeon Forge, Tennessee—Experience what it was like to walk the hallways, parlors, cabins, and Grand Staircase of the Titanic while surrounded by more than 400 artifacts directly from the ship and its passengers at the Titanic Museum. View an underwater eight-foot replica of the ship as it currently rests on the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

Branson, Missouri—Become a passenger on the giant liner’s tragic maiden voyage and learn the history and events that led to the boat’s demise.  One hundred true personal stories of people connected to or on the ship are being shared online throughout the year. TITANIC Museum is operating on schedule despite the recent tornado in Branson.

Photos by Larry Burmeier

Read more about the Titanic Museum in Belfast at  http://www.goingonadventures.com/2012/03/titanic-centennial-attracts-visitors-to.html

Beverly Burmeier writes about destinations all over the world.