RMS Celtic was an ocean liner owned by the White Star Line. The first ship larger than the Great Eastern in gross tonnage, Celtic was the first of a quartet of ships over 20,000 tons, dubbed The Big Four.[1]

Celtic was launched on 4 April 1901 from the Harland and Wolff shipyards in Belfast, and set off on her maiden voyage from Liverpool to New York on 26 July.

At the beginning of the First World War, Celtic was converted into an armed merchant cruiser however, since the vessel had a high fuel consumption it was decided to convert her into a troop ship in January 1916, and used to carry soldiers to Egypt. She was put back on the transatlantic route in March.

In 1917, Celtic struck a mine off the Isle of Man. Seventeen people on board were killed, but the Celtic survived. A number of passengers were rescued by the London and North Western Railway ship Slieve Bawn. Celtic was towed to Peel Bay and repaired in Belfast. In March 1918, U-Boat UB-77 torpedoed Celtic in the Irish Sea. Six people on board were killed, but again Celtic remained afloat, eventually the damaged vessel was towed to Liverpool and repaired again.

Early on 10 December 1928 Celtic became stranded on the Cow and Calf rocks, adjacent to Roches Point as she approached Cobh with more than 200 passengers aboard. The Ballycotton Lifeboat T.P.Hearne 2, along with tugs, a destroyer and local life-saving teams, arrived. Tenders from Cobh disembarked the passengers.[2] Seven thousand tons of cargo were scattered. This time the ship could not be moved or salvaged, and was abandoned to the insurance company who declared the ship to be a total loss. Celtic was completely dismantled for scrap by 1933.[3]


  1. * Roberts, Chalmers (August 1901). "The Biggest Ship". The World's Work: A History of Our Time II: 1176–1179. Retrieved 2009-07-09. 
  2. Leach, Nicholas (2009). Ballycotton Lifeboats. Landmark. p. 32. ISBN 978-1-84306-472-5. 
  3. Daniel Othfors. "Celtic II". The Great Ocean Liners. Retrieved 2008-12-14. 

External linksEdit

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The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Titanic Database Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.

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