SS Laurentic (1908)

SS Laurentic was a British transatlantic ocean liner that was built in Belfast, Ireland, and launched in 1908. She is an early example of a ship whose propulsion combined reciprocating steam engines with a low-pressure steam turbine. Laurentic was one of a pair of sister ships that were ordered in 1907 by the Dominion Line but completed for the White Star Line. Her regular route was between Liverpool and Quebec City.

United Kingdom
OwnerIsmay, Imrie & Co
Port of registry Liverpool
RouteLiverpool – Quebec CityMontreal
BuilderHarland and Wolff, Belfast
Yard number394
Launched10 September 1908
Completed15 April 1909
CommissionedAs AMC, 25 November 1914
Maiden voyage29 April 1909
FateSunk by mines 25 January 1917
General characteristics
TypeOcean liner
Tonnage14,892 GRT, 9,255 NRT
Length550.4 ft (167.8 m)
Beam67.3 ft (20.5 m)
Depth41.2 ft (12.6 m)
Installed power1,492 NHP
Speed19.5 kn (36.1 km/h)
  • 230 1st class
  • 430 2nd class
  • 1,000 3rd class
  • In civilian service: 387
  • as AMC: 470

In 1914 Laurentic served briefly as a troop ship, and then served for more than two years as an armed merchant cruiser (AMC). As an AMC she saw service off West Africa, Singapore, the Bay of Bengal and the Far East. In 1917 two German mines sank Laurentic off the northern coast of Ireland. Her crew successfully abandoned ship, but 354 of them died of hypothermia in her lifeboats. Laurentic was carrying about 43 tons of gold bars when she sank. Most of the 3,211 bars were salvaged by 1924; three more bars were found in the 1930s, while 22 remain unaccounted for. Laurentic's wreck is in the territorial waters of the Republic of Ireland and protected by Irish law.

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