North Co. Donegal Wreck List "B"
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Vessel Type:


Location:Co. Donegal
Date of Loss:23rd January 1917Place:Mouth of Lough Swilly
Cause of Loss:MinedBoat Dive from:Port Salon
Charted Depth:41.8mIrish O.S. Map:Discovery Series No. 2 & 3
Height of Wreck:ScatteredAdmiralty Chart No:2697 and/or 2811
Hull Material:SteelLatitude (GPS):55 18.242 North
Type of Seabed:Stones and shaleLongitude (GPS):07 35.464 West
Average Visibility:15 - 20mDiving Experience:Experienced
Picture available?Yes - click here
Diving Information:      
  • Badly broken up and scattered over a wide area.
  • Holes in the hull from the explosion, and from the salvage attempts, can be seen.
  • Wreck is now owned by people in England, and diving on her privately is, officially, illegal.
  • Previously, the best place to launch from was Port Salon.
  • Marks or transits are currently not known.
  • An ideal scooter dive.
  • Dive High Water Belfast - 5.5 hours.
  • Note!! Permission is required to dive this wreck.
Historical Information:
  • Owned by the White Star Line, she was built in 1908 by Harland & Wolff, Belfast.
  • Weighing 14,892 gross tons, she measured 550.4 x 67.3 x 41.2ft., and was powered by two 3-cylinder triple-expansion turbine engines, generating 11,000 IHP giving a maximum speed of 18 knots.
  • Commanded by Captain R.A. Norton, she struck a mine one hour after leaving Buncrana and sank in 45 mins, while acting as an armed merchant cruiser.
  • Fifty-two officers and 316 ratings were saved.
  • On board were 3,211 gold ingots each weighing 40lb.
  • During the next 7 years and 7,000 dives, 3,189 ingots were recovered, leaving 22 (maybe) unaccounted for.
  • There were no serious cases of the "bends" during those 7,000 dives.
  • Her ships bell now resides in the Protestant Church at Port Salon.
Source Publications:
"Dictionary of Disasters at Sea during the Age of Steam 1824 - 1962"
Charles Hocking
London Stamp Exchange 1989 - ISBN: 0948130474
"Dive" Magazine article
Rich Stevenson (March 2001)
"Donegal, An Exploration"
J.J. Tohill
Donegal Democrat Ltd 1976
"Great Passenger Ships of the World"
Arnold Kludas
"Shipwreck Index of Ireland"
Richard & Bridget Larn
Lloyd's Register - Fairplay Ltd 2002 - ISBN: 1900839970
"Shipwrecks of the Irish Coast 932 - 1997"
Edward J. Bourke
Edward J. Bourke 1998 - ISBN: 0952302713
"Shipwrecks of the Irish Coast 1105 – 1993"
Edward J. Bourke
Edward J. Bourke 1994 - ISBN: 0952302705
"Shipwrecks of the Irish Coast 1582 - 2000"
Edward J. Bourke
Edward J. Bourke 2000 - ISBN: 0952302721
Other Sources:
Rob Betz
- (2002)
Royal Navy
Hydrographic Department (1970)
Vic Foster
Castlereagh SAC (1996)
North Co. Donegal Wreck List "B"

Last update - 05-May-2004

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