A little over six months after the 100th Anniversary of its tragic sinking, a photo purported to show the notorious iceberg that sank the RMS Titanic is headed to auction.
The “Wood” iceberg, named for the Captain that captured the image, is unusual in that it was taken two days before the legendary liner’s sinking on April 15, 1912. While there are a number of photographs taken after the disaster (you can see our in-depth gallery on the suspected bergs here.) none has ever claimed to have been the one before the sinking.
According to PetaPixel, there are a number of reasons experts believe that this photo is legit.
First, it was captured at a location 2-3 days (in iceberg floating time) from where the ship sank. Second, the shape of the iceberg matches the sketches offered by eyewitnesses who survived the disaster, including the lookout who first spotted the ice in the horizon.
Finally, the iceberg’s shape resembles another photo (seen in the 1976 book A Night to Remember) taken from a ship named Prinz Adalbert, which was present in the area during the day after the sinking.
RR Auction notes that the difference in appearance between the two icebergs may be “attributable to the angle of the photographer and the aftermath of impact,” and that all these reasons taken together have allowed “noted Titanic experts to establish this photograph as capturing the iceberg everyone has been talking about for the past century.”
Based on testimony from surviving crew members, the iceberg that doomed Titanic was a “dark-blue mass” between 30-60 feet high above the water line. Seamen Joseph Scarrott, who spied the berg once the ship had passed it, said it resembled in shape “the Rock of Gibraltar” with its highest point to the right.
Depending on the angle of the approaching vessel, the Wood iceberg could certainly fit that description. It’s also hauntingly similar to a photo taken (see below) from the ship “Prinz Adalbert” on the morning of April 15th – only hours after the Titanic sank. Those on the ship thought the berg strange because of a reported red smear near its base, the same color of the Titanic’s keel.
Experts expect the photo to fetch over $10,000 at auction. If your interested in picking up the original, jump here for more information.