ST. CHARLES – The St. Charles History Museum’s summer exhibit, Tip of the Iceberg: St. Charles’ Ties to the Titanic, will explore local connections to the most infamous disaster in maritime history, the 1912 sinking of the Titanic.
According to a news release from the St. Charles History Museum, Alice Berg Johnson and her two children, Harold and Elanor, were returning home to their hometown of St. Charles after visiting Alice’s ill father in Finland. Alice Johnson purchased three third class tickets to set sail on the Titanic for what would be its first and final journey across the Atlantic Ocean.
The Johnsons were among the approximately 710 people who made it off the ship alive after the vessel struck an iceberg and sank with over 1,500 passengers still on board.
Through months of research, the St. Charles History Museum staff has been able to piece together the story of the Johnson family to find out exactly what happened to the family on that fateful night in the North Atlantic Ocean on April 15, 1912, and how they and the other survivors were able to make it home.
“The Johnsons’ story is just one of the many reasons why we are still so fascinated with the Titanic to this day,” St. Charles History Museum Executive Director Alison Costanzo said in the release. “Although the Titanic will always be remembered as a terrible tragedy, it is also an amazing story of survival and resilience that led to improved safety regulations that have prevented a similar tragedy from happening since.”
In addition to the Johnsons, the exhibit will also feature the stories of Molly Brown, a passenger remembered for her bravery and actions during the sinking, as well as the Caldwell family, who were also on their way home to Illinois when the ship went down.
The exhibit will open with a special reception open to the public from 5 to 7 p.m. June 7. For more information on the exhibit or to register, go to stcmuseum.org/events or call the museum at (630) 584-6967.