Northern Ireland

200,000 Titanic-related records are published online

Titanic
Image caption Titanic leaving Southampton on its maiden voyage

More than 200,000 records relating to the Titanic have been published online to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the ship's sinking on 15 April.

The documents provide information about survivors and the 1,500 people who died, including a number of wills and hundreds of coroner inquest files.

The collection has been gathered by the subscription-based family history websiteAncestry.co.uk.

However, access to the Titanic records collection is free until 31 May 2012.

The Titanic, which was built in Belfast, sank in the Atlantic Ocean after hitting an iceberg during its maiden voyage to New York.

The records include the ship's official passenger list, which shows the names, ages and occupations of those on board the ill-fated liner.

It also details the nationalities, positions and addresses of the ship's crew which had more than 900 members.

'Tragic'

The last will and testament of Titanic's captain, Edward J Smith, is among the documents which can be accessed online.

Image caption The will of Edward John Smith is included in the online collection

The wills of wealthy American businessmen Benjamin Guggenheim and John Jacob Astor can also be viewed on the site.

All three men lost their lives in the disaster.

Members of the public can search through more than 329 coroner inquest files and records of the 330 bodies that were recovered at sea.

Images of the grave headstones of 121 passengers have also been published.

The website also has a passenger list from the Carpathia, the vessel which rescued more than 700 people from Titanic.

Ancestry.co.uk content manager, Miriam Silverman, told the Press Association: "Over the generations, many families may have heard rumours that they had an ancestor aboard the Titanic, or even lost the evidence proving it.

"We're very pleased to be able to offer access to these valuable records for free, enabling thousands to uncover the story of their ancestor's tragic voyage."

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