Thursday, February 9, 2012

Reader Comment


From Byter Maureen:

Dear Otto, 

“Hartley” is a family name even to the point of being [Maureen’s husband] Kevin’s second name. 

We went to Colne and to the local Family History Centre. We were told SMITH is easier to find than HARTLEY. When we came outside we looked at the awnings on the shops. The undertaker, grocer, fishmonger, cafe, indeed every shop, was operated by “Hartley”.  

Therefore we were not surprised by the number of persons lining the street for his funeral. Probably he was related to every one of them. 

However, I’m surprised you didn’t include the Australian connection to the Titanic bandsmen. In Broken Hill there is a memorial to those bandsmen in the park. It is the only one outside of England and is a substantial piece of masonry. 

Best regards,


I could say that the reference to Broken Hill’s memorial was omitted for reasons of space, or that it was going to be used for a follow up post, but the simple truth is that I have never heard of it. 
Some notes on it: 
Broken Hill is a mining city located about 1,100 kilometres west of Sydney, in the desert near the South Australian border.  Its population is about 20,000 and it has been called The Silver City, the Oasis of the West, and the Capital of the Outback.

The memorial was erected because of the feeling among the Broken Hill bandsmen that a lasting monument should be erected to the ship's band.  The memorial was unveiled on 21 December 1913 and was financed by the local bands.  Broken Hill had four brass bands at the time, the bands playing a strong part in community life.
It was also felt that there was a kinship with disaster in that the life of a mining community is often subject to disasters and tragedy.
In 1913 Broken Hill experienced the loss of 31 lives in mining disasters.

The inscription on the memorial reads:
Erected by The Citizens of Broken Hill As a Memorial 
To the Heroic Bandsmen of the Steamship Titanic 
Who Played to the End 
[first few bars of NMGTT displayed] 
Calmly Faced Certain Death Whilst Women, Children 
and their Fellow Men were being Rescued
from the Wreck of that Ill-Fated Vessel 
off the Coast of Newfoundland on April 15th 1912
Total number saved 705 out of a total of 2,340 souls

The broken classical column of the memorial symbolises a life taken before its due time, as was the case of the bandsmen and passengers who lost their lives through drowning.       

As a result of interest by the Victorian Band Association, a Titanic Memorial Bandstand was erected in 1915 in the Sturt Street Plantation, Ballarat.

The octagonal bandstand is amongst the most important Edwardian bandstands in Australia.  Surmounting the bandstand's pinnacle is a weathervane adorned by a small silhouette of the ill – fated Titanic. 

In Kadina, South Australia in 1913 a bandstand was erected in the Victoria Square rotunda to commemorate the bandsmen of the Titanic.             

To see other memorials to the Titanic or Titanic related, click on:

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