Okay, maybe saying her story "inspired" Titanic is a bit of an exaggeration, but Roberta Maioni's history is amazing on its own terms. A maid traveling first class on the Titanic with her countess employer, young Roberta fell in love with a ship's steward. On the night of the sinking, her sweetheart gave Roberta his life jacket and helped her into a lifeboat, before going down with the ship. The White Star Line badge he pressed into her hand, along with an account of the sinking, sold for 10,000 pounds when they went up for auction in 1999. Her granddaughter now says vaguely that Roberta's love story was the "inspiration" for Kate and Leo's, then makes things more suspicious still by claiming that, "Also there was a locket, which was gold, with blue enamel and a pearl and it belonged to Roberta... If I knew who bought it I would want to buy it back. It's priceless to me because of its sentimental value." [The Mirror]
TitanicAll Titanic all the time.