Page last updated at 17:16 GMT, Saturday, 18 October 2008 18:16 UK

Titanic survivor sells mementoes

Titanic survivor Millvina Dean
Miss Dean was a nine-week-old baby when the ship sank in 1912

The last remaining survivor of the Titanic has sold her mementoes for more than 30,000 at a Wiltshire auction.

Millvina Dean sold a suitcase full of clothes, which had been given to her by the people of New York after she was rescued as a baby.

The 96-year-old also sold rare prints of the ill-fated cruise liner and compensation letters sent to her mother by the Titanic Relief Fund.

Miss Dean needs to raise money to pay for her private nursing home fees.

I am selling it all now because I have to pay these nursing home fees
Milvina Dean

She was nine weeks old when the ship sank in 1912 while her family were emigrating to Kansas.

She was placed in a sack and carried to safety along with her mother and brother. But her father Bertram was one of more than 1,500 people who died.

Miss Dean moved into a private nursing home in Ashurst, Hampshire, two years ago after breaking her hip.

She said: "I was hoping to be here for two weeks after breaking my hip, but I developed an infection and have been here for two years.

Millvina Dean's suitcase
Millvina Dean's suitcase fetched 10,800 at the auction

"I am not able to live in my home anymore. I am selling it all now because I have to pay these nursing home fees."

At Henry Aldridge and Son in Devizes, the suitcase fetched 10,800, the prints 9,250 and the letters 11,100.

Auctioneer Andrew Aldridge said: "It is a great amount of money, I am sure she will be very happy when we tell her the news.

"The Titanic International Society had bid for the items with the intention of giving them back to Millvina. Unfortunately they were blown out of the water by other bidders."

One of the few known surviving lifejackets, not belonging to Miss Dean, sold for 47,000.

Other lots included a watch belonging to a crew member which sold for 92,000 and a Titanic key that fetched 80,000.


The last remaining survivor of the Titanic sells her mementoes at auction

Event remembers Titanic disaster
15 Apr 07 |  Hampshire
Auction for Titanic steward items
01 Oct 08 |  Wiltshire

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific