National Maritime Museum commemorates the centenary of RMS Leinster


To commemorate the centenary of RMS Leinster, Dun Laoghaire’s National Maritime Museum is hosting an exhibition about the largest ever loss of life in the Irish Sea which occurred 12.25 nautical miles (22.7 kms) from the Museum, one month before World War One ended. Radio Officer Arthur H. Jeffries’s name on the former 180-year-old Mariners Church War Memorial serves as a poignant reminder of 568 civilians, Post Office workers, crew and military of six nationalities who died when the outbound Kingstown to Holyhead Royal Mail Ship was torpedoed by German submarine UB-123 on 10th October 1918.


Story boards, artefacts, personal memorabilia and interactive touch screens display information on over 800 RMS Leinster casualties and survivors of this dreadful tragedy and the 36 man crew of UB-123. Beneath an impressive RMS Leinster scale model are a brass spittoon from the wreck and an inscribed silver pocket watch presented to Fireman William Maher by passenger Dorothy Toppin for saving her life. A large brass fire pump emphasises the scale of this 115 metre (377 feet) long ship capable of 24 knots speed. A triangular display portraying a riveted ships bow embedded with two RMS Leinster brass portholes shows the luxurious interiors of a first class cabin and dining room. Also displayed are medals, memorial cards, galley keys and a franked letter retrieved from the sea and subsequently delivered to the addressee in Canada.

More information about the National Maritime Museum’s events commemorating the Centenary of RMS Leinster can be seen here

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