Cobh – Ireland
DAY 13 – When we called into Cobh (pronounced Cove), I had no idea of this town’s connection to the ill-fated Titanic. On the harbour front, is this bright yellow building where you’ll find the Titanic Bar. Two rooms of the splendid Titanic have been recreated in this bar and restaurant. Cobh was the last port of call for the Titanic before its doomed Atlantic crossing on April 14, 1912.
Cobh was one of the main ports from where Irish emigrants left for the USA and elsewhere. Between 1848 and 1950 almost 6.5 million people emigrated, with 2.5 million of these leaving from Cobh. Cobh commands one of the world’s largest natural harbors, hence its prominence as a naval base in the 18th century. It was also a port of call for luxury transatlantic liners in the 1950′s.
After a visit by Queen Victoria in 1849, Cobh was renamed Queenstown. Colorful fishing boats add color to the waterfront. Cobh is situated on Great Island, one of the three large islands in Cork harbour, Little Island and Fota are the others. The three islands are now all joined by roads and bridges. The harbour is one of the largest and safest anywhere.
On the quayside there’s a memorial to the victims of the Lusitania, many of whom are buried in the old church cemetery. The Lusitania was sunk off Kinsale in 1915 by a German submarine, an action which was responsible for bringing the U.S. into the Great War.
Statues of Annie Moore and her two brothers stand outside the Cobh Heritage Centre. Annie Moore was the first emigrant to be processed on Ellis Island in 1892.