Mapping the Irish Lost in the Titanic Disaster: Intriguing and Moving Stories Uncovered by Know Thy Place

Mapping the Irish Lost in the Titanic Disaster: Intriguing and Moving Stories Uncovered by Know Thy Place

02 April 2012

To commemorate the centenary of the Titanic departing Queenstown on its fateful maiden voyage, Cork company, Know Thy Place, after extensive research, has produced a special commemorative R.M.S Titanic Chart telling the story of the ill-fated luxury liner's connections with Ireland in a unique and informative way.

Know Thy Place Director Damian Shiels describes some of the intriguing details the team found out: "The story of the Titanic's connections with Ireland begins with the Harland & Wolff shipyard in Belfast, where she was designed and built. We explain her building with the aid of a Belfast docks map, showing the key sites associated with the White Star Liner. One of the interesting stories we were able to uncover was the involvement a number of Irish businesses had with the Titanic's fit-out, such as William Liddell & Company from Co. Down, who produced the linen for the vessel, and the Kildare Carpet Company in Co. Laois which made the state-room carpets."

A key part of the Titanic story is that of her last port of call, Queenstown (now Cobh). A total of 123 passengers embarked from there on the doomed ship, and the team from Know Thy Place has looked at their journey from 'Titanic Pier', behind the James Scott and Company offices, aboard the tenders that took them to liner anchored off Roche's Point. As with Belfast, the chart includes a map of Cobh that highlights a number of the key areas in the town associated with the Titanic's brief visit.

The central part of the chart's story looks at the Irish passengers and crew who were aboard the Titanic, telling some of their stories; while a map of Ireland, marks with individual crosses, the home places of each of the 129 people from all around the country that Know Thy Place's researchers identified as being lost in the tragedy.

Damian said "We spent a long time trying to generate a comprehensive list of people from Ireland who were lost when the ship went down, as we discovered that many publications cite wildly different numbers in this regard. There are many reasons for this - some exclude Irish crew members from their totals, while others fail to include Northern Ireland in their calculations. We found the only solution was to create our own list of individuals specifically for the chart."

He continued "We eventually generated a list of 129 passengers and crew from around the country who were lost; a number that was almost certainly higher, as only scant details survive for many of the crew." Now, for the first time, the cities, towns and townlands where these people came from have been used to create an at-a-glance image of the human cost to Ireland of the ship's sinking. 

Know Thy Place's unique map allows you to see which parts of the island were most affected, and brings home the scale and range of the impact that the loss of the Titanic must have had. For example, many of the Irish on board had been travelling in groups, meaning that some localities suffered disproportionally. Fourteen people from the parish of Addergoole, Co. Mayo were on board, yet only three survived. Individual families also suffered disproportionally, and one such example is that of Margaret Rice from Athlone and her five young sons were among those lost.

Commenting on their interesting, and moving findings, Damian said "We discovered that, for the family of Jeremiah Burke, a 19 year old from White's Cross, Cork, a remarkable momento of their lost son, washed up at nearby Dunkettle in 1913 - sealed in a bottle was his last message - ‘From Titanic. Good Bye all. Burke of Glanmire, Cork.' It was through findings like this one, the story of the Titanic really came to life for our team in Know Thy Place."

The R.M.S Titanic Chart is now available from Know Thy Place for €39.99 at or by calling (021) 2439234.