Lusitania lifejacket


About this object

This is the only surviving complete lifejacket, of this type, from the sinking. It was kept as a souvenir by a man from Cape Clear Island, off the southern coast of Ireland.

Cunard offered cash rewards to local fishermen for retrieving bodies. The straps of the lifejacket are cut, suggesting that it was removed from a body that had been recovered.

There were three different types of lifejacket on Lusitania; two were placed over the head and secured at the waist, while this model was wrapped around the body and secured with thin shoulder straps.

Object specifics

  • Title
    Lusitania lifejacket
  • Accession no.
  • Type
  • Artist/Maker
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Place made
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Date made
    pre 1915
  • Materials
    Textile; Cork
  • Location
    Merseyside Maritime Museum, First Floor, Lusitania: Life, Loss, Legacy
  • Measurements
    360 mm x 1480 mm x 60 mm
  • Related people
    Biddle and Webb Ltd (Associated Person)
  • Collection
    From the Merseyside Maritime Museum collections

Explore related


  • World War I

    Start date: 1914-07-28
    End date: 1914-07-28
    Description: World War I (WWI or WW1), also known as the First World War, was a global war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918. From the time of its occurrence until the approach of World War II in 1939, it was called simply the World War or the Great War, and thereafter the First World War or World War I. In America it was initially called the European War. More than 9 million combatants were killed: a scale of death impacted by industrial advancements, geographic stalemate and reliance on human wave attacks. It was the fifth-deadliest conflict in world history, paving the way for major political changes, including revolutions in many of the nations involved. Wiki - December 2013

Object view = Social History
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