April marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic 375 miles off the Newfoundland coast in 1912. Events in Halifax, a city that played a key part in the tragedy, will commemorate the event’s centennial.
Halifax’s connection to the Titanic is a sad one. The ship struck an iceberg off the coast of eastern Canada (Cape Race, Newfoundland, was the only place on land where the distress call was received) just before midnight on April 14, 1912. No rescue ships could arrive in time from land, but two days after the sinking of the ship, vessels were sent from Halifax—the closest major port to the site of the sinking—to recover bodies. More than 300 victims were located and either buried at sea or transported back to Halifax where they were sent by train to their families or interred in the city cemeteries. Funeral services were held for the victims in Halifax.
It’s expected that tourists from around the world will visit Halifax in April, some of them aboard a Titanic memorial cruise, sailing from Southampton, England, which will arrive in Halifax on April 16.
Commemorative events in the city will include a candlelit procession on April 14; the unveiling of a permanent Titanic memorial; films and history panels, an Titanic Antiques Road Show and tours of the cemeteries where 150 Titanic passengers are buried, the ships that remain and Titanic sites. You can also visit the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, which has one of the best collections of Titanic artifacts in the world.