TODAY   |  October 19, 2013

Titanic violin could fetch half a million dollars at auction

The violin played by the Titanic's bandmaster as the liner sank into the North Atlantic a century ago is going up for auction, with estimates that it could bring in more than half a million dollars. NBC’s Duncan Golestani reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> a very famous violin is going off on the auction block today and once lost at sea after going down with the "titanic." but now it's expected to fetch hundreds of thousands of dollars. we get a firsthand look.

>> reporter: from the most famous ship of all time, the most iconic piece of memorabilia.

>> good-bye. good luck.

>> reporter: the violin played with the master as the ship sank into the north atlantic a century ago. a moment of bravery captured in the movie. as passengers ran for their lives, he and his band tried to calm them with music. days later, the suitcase bearing his initials was found floating in the water and with it, the violin which is now expected to sell for more than $500,000. of all the artifacts from the "titanic." why is this the biggest seller?

>> he is one of the most famous individuals surrounding the titanic disaster and to have the violin, it doesn't get any better than that.

>> reporter: it really is incredible to be holding something from "titanic." hardly any visible damage just a few cracks and make some people doubt it is authentic but since stover discovered in attic in 2006 , the instrument has undergone years of tests and scanned in a hospital.

>> we believe it is the violin on board the "titanic."

>> reporter: the plates reside for wallace on our engagement from maria. the violin was a gift from the fiancee he never would return to. the movie, a night to remember, shows wallace playing a final him on it as the "titanic" slipped beneath the icy waters.