A telegraph machine from the wreck of the RMS Lusitania has been recovered. Diver Eoin McGarry, who has dived more times than anyone else alive to the wreck, raised the object from the seabed on Saturday morning. Earlier this summer he brought up the pedestal for the bridge telegraph. It’s a tough dive with the wreck lying at a depth of around 90 metres.
The RMS Lusitania was one of the largest and most luxurious cruise liners of her day. On the 7th of May 1915 she was nearing the end of what would be her final voyage from New York to Liverpool. Just off Old Head of Kinsale she was fired upon by the German submarine U-20. A single torpedo struck the starboard bow and an explosion erupted within the hull. The ship began to list steeply and within 18 minutes the Lusitania was gone. The loss of life that day was tremendous with only 767 of the 1960 on board surviving.
The wreck was discovered on the 6th of October 1935 around 12 miles off Old Kinsale Head. The mystery surround the sinking and tales of treasure on board meant that divers were eager to discover her secrets and plunder her treasure.
The wreck of the Lusitania is under privately owned by Greg Bemis, a retired venture capitalist who acquired it in the 1960’s.
Minister Humphreys, Minister for Arts and Heritage who confirmed the recovery said: “It is great news that the telegraph was safely on shore and will now be conserved by Mr Bemis, who hopes to place the artefacts recovered from the Lusitania on display locally, which of course would be of great benefit to the people of Kinsale.”