"We can't allow things that are inaccurate to stand." — The Word of Our Dan, February 19, 2008.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Step three: profit!

Just in time for Titanic Week, a couple of articles from Ye Olde Memory Hole. And no, this was far from the craziest idea in Newfoundland history, or even in the Peckford era.

First, from a CP wire story which appeared in the May 21, 1981 edition of the Ottawa Citizen:
Peckford eyeing Titanic

ST. JOHN'S, Nfld. (CP) Newfoundland Premier Brian Peckford, who has already laid claim to offshore oil and gas resources, is now eyeing the remains of the Titanic, which lie far down on the ocean floor somewhere on the Grand Banks.

Peckford apparently thinks the Titanic, which sank when it hit an iceberg off Newfoundland on April 14, 1912, with the loss of nearly 1,600 lives, could be a tourist attraction if plans to refloat the vessel ever succeed.

The matter was brought up during the legislature's question period Tuesday by Steve Neary (L - La Poile).

Is the Newfoundland government going to lay claim to this valuable tourist resource?" Neary asked the premier.

Peckford quickly replied the government is carrying out research on the matter.

"(The government) intends to make sure of every single possibility of development we can get our hands on. We will never overlook the Titanic nor every last microscopic opportunity for the benefit of Newfoundland and Labrador," Peckford said.
And wire copy from the July 15, 1981 edition of the Montreal Gazette:
Nfld. wants share of 'Titanic' riches

St. John's – Newfoundland Premier Brian Peckford said yesterday his government wants to "work something out" with explorers seeking the Titanic to decide who can claim the fortune in gold and jewels believed to be aboard the sunken luxury liner.

A group of American adventurers, headed by Texas oilman Jack Grimm, dropped underwater cameras into the frigid north Atlantic yesterday to determine whether a 500-ton metal fragment lying on the ocean floor might be part of the sunken ship, lost since 1912.

While explorers have been searching off the Newfoundland coast, Peckford said, his government has decided the province, too, has some claim to the vessel.

Peckford said the explorers would have a legitimate claim on the ship if they successfully discovered it, "but in the legal constitutional context, we do have some claim as well."

"We will allow those people, who have all the interest and all that money, to raise the vessel, and then we'll sit down with them and work out some arrangement for its use and for the wealth that may come from it."

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