The Titanic was carrying 2,223 passengers when it sank in the icy waters of the Atlantic on April 12, 1912. A total of 1,517 men, women and children – mostly third-class passengers and crew – died in the tragedy, which has been detailed in countless books and movies for almost all of the 106 years since the tragedy. Titanic collectibles have been particularly hot since the wreck was discovered by Robert Ballard, then working at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, in 1985. In late 2017, the tragedy was humanized by the sale of a letter written by Alexander Oskar Holverson, a first-class passenger, one day before the ship sank. The letter sold for $165,776 in England by Henry Aldridge & Son, an auction house that specializes in Titanic memorabilia. That is a record price for correspondence from the ill-fated ocean liner.
Holverson was traveling on the ocean liner with his wife Mary, who survived the disaster. Hovlerson planned on sending the letter to his mother when they arrived in New York, and it is addressed to "My dear Mother." It was found in Holverson's pocket notebook when his body was recovered and later given to his family.
The buyer's identity has not been disclosed.