When she launched on June 7, 1906, Cunard’s RMS Lusitania was a marvel of modern ship building. Until the launch of her sister ship Mauretania in September 1906, Lusitania was the longest ocean liner in service at 787 feet overall. On her second crossing, Lusitania won the Blue Riband, an honor given to any passenger liner completing the trip across the Atlantic Ocean with the record highest average speed.
Before her demise in 1915, Lusitania made 202 ocean crossings on Cunard’s Liverpool, England, to New York City, New York, route during her seven-year career. Lusitania could accommodate approximately 2,198 passengers across nine decks and was capable of a top speed of 28 knots. Power was provided by four direct-acting steam turbines capable of producing a total 76,000 horsepower.
Struck by a torpedo launched by a U-boat on her 202nd crossing, Lusitania sank within 18 minutes, resulting in the loss of almost 1,200 lives. The wreck of Lusitania lies approximately 11 miles off the Old Head of Kinsale Lighthouse off the southern coast of Ireland.
This video has more:
You can read more about Lusitania in Soundings’ December 2017 issue.