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September 23, 2017

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Last Titanic lunch menu sells for US$122,000

LONDON--A menu for the last luncheon served to first-class passengers on the doomed Titanic sold for 76,000 pounds (US$122,000, 91,000 euros) at a British auction on Sunday.

The menu, dated April 14, 1912 — the night the biggest, most ambitious ship of the age hit an iceberg in the North Atlantic and sank, killing 1,514 people — was the star lot in an auction of Titanic memorabilia.

A Britain-based collector bought the menu, which had been on the table of American banker Washington Dodge, at the Henry Aldridge and Son saleroom in Devizes, southwest England.

The dishes on offer to the ship's wealthiest passengers included chicken a la Maryland — otherwise known as fried chicken with creamy gravy — and eggs Argenteuil, a plate of poached eggs with asparagus.

"The menu carries the all-important date of April 14 and gives the reader a fascinating insight into the culinary life of Titanic's elite passengers," said auctioneer Andrew Aldridge.

Other dishes on the menu, which included over 40 options in total over several courses, included galatine of chicken and grilled mutton chops.

Dodge's wife Ruth had slipped the paper into her handbag after lunch, unaware that she would be carrying it onto a lifeboat that evening.

The couple and their son Washington Junior survived the tragedy, and the menu had stayed in the family ever since.

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