August 4, 2017

Telegraph Recovered from Lusitania Wreckage

  • (Photo: Ireland Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht)
  • (Photo: Ireland Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht)
  • (Photo: Ireland Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht) (Photo: Ireland Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht)
  • (Photo: Ireland Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht) (Photo: Ireland Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht)

More than 100 years after the sinking of the RMS Lusitania, divers have recovered yet another artifact from the wreckage of the historic ocean liner.

 
The Lusitania was sailing from New York to Liverpool on May 7, 1915 when it was torpedoed by a German U-boat off the Head of Kinsale. A second explosion then led to the vessel’s sinking and the loss of 1,198 lives, marking a key moment in World War I history.
 
The latest artifact brought up from the Lusitania is a telegraph, the second to be retrieved from the ship’s wreckage in recent months (the other was recovered from the seafloor in October 2016).
 
A previous dive to recover the telegraph in July 2016 was unsuccessful due to equipment failure.
 
This time around, recreational divers, licensed by Irish Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD  with the consent of the wreck’s owner, reported that they had located the telegraph and marked its location on the ocean floor.
 
After consultations between the owner and the Minister’s Department, the telegraph was brought to the surface successfully under the supervision of an archaeologist from the Department’s National Monuments Service (NMS).
 
“I am happy to confirm that this important piece of the Lusitania has now been recovered from the wreck off the west Cork coast. I understand that the telegraph is undamaged and in excellent condition, said Minister Humphreys.
 
The telegraph, once used to send messages to the vessel’s engine room, is now undergoing conservation ashore.
 
“I also understand that the owner of wreck, Mr. Gregg Bemis, intends to place the telegraph and the pedestal successfully recovered last year, on display in a local museum, along with other artifacts he has recovered during earlier dives, which is great news for the local community,” Minister Humphreys said.
Gregg Bemiss National Monuments ServiceDepartment’s National Monuments Service