clock menu more-arrow no yes

Watch the eerie last video of the RMS Lusitania

Colored illustration of the sinking of the Cunard liner Lusitania, May 7, 1915, by a German submarine off the coast of Ireland.
Colored illustration of the sinking of the Cunard liner Lusitania, May 7, 1915, by a German submarine off the coast of Ireland.
Getty Images

The last video of the RMS Lusitania shows the full impressive glory of what was once the world's longest ocean liner the day it cast off from New York City in 1915. It successfully sailed more than 200 times, even avoiding the very iceberg that sank the Titanic:

National Archives

Well-dressed passengers anxious to visit England arrived at the docks:

National Archives

The nearly 2,000 passengers boarded as US flags waved:

National Archives

The 787-foot British liner was more than twice the length of an American football field:

National Archives

And contrary to historic British government claims, the ship did carry war munitions.

National Archives

Lusitania was used for both wartime and civilian purposes, according to documents declassified last year. It sank on May 7, 1915, after a German submarine shot a torpedo into it, killing nearly 1,200 passengers. The silent footage is a reminder of how the vigor of the modern industrial age was not always synonymous with human safety, especially during times of war.