Many of the Titanic passengers had packed all their earthly possessions.

Message in a Bottle

"From Titanic, goodbye all, Burke of Glanmire, Cork.”

A simple note thrown into the sea by 19-year-old Jeremiah Burke, a passenger on the prestigious but ill-fated Titanic ship, which set sail from Cobh in 1912. Full of anticipation of a new life in the United States, Jeremiah decided to send a farewell message to his homeland, sure that he was unlikely to ever return to Ireland. Using one of his own shoelaces to tie it up, he threw the letter overboard in the holy water bottle that his mother gave to him when she bid him farewell.

Little did he know that he would indeed never return, and that these would be the last words sent from the Titanic. Four days later, on 14 April, 1912, the ship struck an iceberg and sank in the early hours of 15 April. In total, 1,521 passengers and crew perished that day.

Black and white picture of the Titanic at port

Miraculously, Jeremiah's bottle made its way to shore a year later and was discovered only a few miles from his family's house. It was retained there until recent years, when it was donated to the Cobh Heritage Centre as part of the 100 year commemoration of the Titanic. View the letter and the bottle there today, along with other memorabilia, as part of their fascinating Titanic exhibition.

Find out more and plan your visit to the colourful village of Cobh in Cork today.