Day Trips: The Titanic, Mayborn Museum, Waco

Artifacts of famed ocean liner sets sail at Waco museum

Photos by Gerald E. McLeod

"Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition" at the Mayborn Museum in Waco unlocks some of the mysteries of what was once the largest and most opulent cruise ship in the world.

On April 15, 1912, the ocean liner became the most storied ship short of Noah's Ark.

Explorers discovered the "unsinkable" vessel 73 years after it dropped nearly 2.5 miles below the frigid surface. The structure lay nearly 13 miles from where it had reportedly gone down. The stern and bow came to rest nearly half a mile apart.

RMS Titanic Inc. secured exclusive rights to research the wreckage. In eight expeditions the company recovered over 5,500 items from the large debris field. More than 150 of the artifacts are on display at the Mayborn Museum.

Of those aboard, 1,523 were lost and 705 were rescued. As visitors enter the exhibit they are given a "boarding pass" of one of the passengers on the ship.

The voyage through the exhibition begins at the construction of the vessel and continues through displays of the cabins, pieces of the ship, as well as table settings and dinner menus. Along the way are stories and possessions of billionaires, immigrants, and other passengers.

After viewing the detritus from the shattered ship, visitors take out their boarding passes at the end of the exhibit to find the name of "their" passenger on a list to see if they survived that fateful day.

"Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition" is at the Mayborn Museum in Waco through Jan. 6, 2019. The show is one of nine artifact exhibits including permanent displays in Las Vegas, Nev., and Orlando, Fla. Timed tickets are available at

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Mayborn Museum, Titanic, RMS Titanic, Inc.

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