Titanic’s Vegas Connection Is Now Part of the Collection

Titanic Artifact Exhibit

Titanic the Artifact Exhibition adds Vegas Related Artifacts Never Before Seen

Did you know that the Titanic had a connection to Clark County, Nevada? I mean, besides the Titanic Artifact Exhibition at Luxor, that is.

From the press release:

“Five rare artifacts, with direct ties to Clark County, recovered from RMS Titanic’s wreck site will go on display for a limited-time engagement at Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition inside Luxor Hotel and Casino. These artifacts, which includes gambling chips that has never before been on public display. The artifacts belonged to first-class passengers Virginia Estelle McDowell Clark and Walter Miller Clark, who boarded the “Ship of Dreams” as a belated honeymoon trip – sadly, Virginia returned home as a widow.”

Walter Miller-Clark and his brother U.S. Senator William Andrews Clark built the three railroads (San Pedro, Los Angeles & Salt Lake) that connected for shipments between Salt Lake City, Utah and Los Angeles, California.

Wait, there’s more.

The half-way point of the line was in Nevada. The railroad needed a halfway point where customers and workers could disembark for a break from travel. The land alongside the tracks was auctioned off in sections which created Las Vegas as a railroad watering hole in 1905, the same year it was founded (later incorporated in 1910). Passengers riding between Utah and Los Angeles would then depart from the train at Las Vegas as a travel break. No doubt, wandering into casinos and in turn, missing the train’s departure. In 1940, Union Pacific Railroad built a train station   (where the Plaza hotel stands, presently). Clark County was named after Senator William Andrews Clark.

Titanic Artifact Exhibit

Believed to be Virginia Clark’s locket.

Now back to his brother, Walter. Walter and his wife, Virgina, were passengers aboard the Titanic. Walter died tragically when the Titanic sank, Virgina (cover image) survived having been on a lifeboat.

Titanic Artifact Exhibit

Gambling Chip

More of what the display includes, from the press release:

  • Gambling Chips: Never before been on public display, these gaming chips were recovered from inside a suitcase and appear to be made of horn.
  • 18-Carat Gold Locket Engraved with the Initials “VC”: The initials on this locket match those of first-class passenger Virginia Clark, who survived the sinking. The charm was found with other jewelry and toiletry items in the remnants of a small travel bag recovered in 1994.
  • Cuff Link Made of Ottoman Turkish Coins: This cuff link is comprised of two gold Turkish coins held together by a chain on the back. They are both 50 Kurush coins, which feature the image of the “tugra” or royal monogram of Sultan Abd al-Hamid (1842-1918).
  • Gold-Plated Toiletry Item: The insignia “SM,” possibly the initials of a Titanic passenger, is still visible on the lid of this little canister.
  • Brass Shaving Stick Canister: This stick canister still contains its original shaving soap inside.

The additions to the Titanic Artifact Exhibition at Luxor are there for an unspecified limited time. Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition is open daily at Luxor Las Vegas from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. with the last admission at 9 p.m. For more information and ticket prices, visit their website. I’ve been to the exhibit twice, there’s just something about seeing “the Big Piece” close-up. I’m planning another visit.

[Photos: Courtesy of RMS Titanic, Inc. and included with press release for circulation.] 

About the Author

Michael Movestro
Michael Movestro founded Vegas Bright to continue the tradition when Vegas Chatter cashed out. Michael pays the bills, maintains the site, writes articles, hosts the Vegas Untz podcast.