Cobh, formerly Queenstown, and Cork Harbour (Photo: Centenary News)

Cork conference recalls US Navy in Ireland during WW1

Posted on on 03 July 2017
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International scholars gather at University College Cork this week for a public conference marking the centenary of the US Navy's First World War deployment to Ireland.  

Winning the Western Approaches: Unrestricted Submarine Warfare and the US Navy in Ireland, 1917-18 will explore the period in which American warships and seaplanes guarded the western Atlantic shipping lanes from German submarines.  

The US crews, who were largely based in Cork Harbour and Bantry Bay, began arriving soon after America's declaration of war against Germany in 1917.

The conference runs from Wednesday 5 July - Friday 7 July, and is free and open to the public. No registration is required.

During 1917-18, up to 10,000 Americans served in Ireland, at a time when German submarines were sinking hundreds of merchant vessels in and near Irish waters.


Two of the speakers have direct family links to these events of a century ago.

Nick Jellicoe is the grandson of Admiral Sir John Jellicoe, who commanded the Royal Navy’s Grand Fleet in the Great War.

Nat Sims’ grandfather was Admiral William Sims, who commanded the US Navy forces in Europe protecting Allied convoys.

They're among 23 historians from the United States, Britain, Germany, and Ireland who will speak during the three-day event. 

The University College Cork (UCC) conference is the latest in a series of events held around Cork harbour marking the centenary of the US Navy’s Ireland service. For the full programme schedule, visit the UCC School of History website. The conference has been assisted by the Port of Cork and the Irish Government's Department of Arts, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht.

Source: University College Cork, School of History

Images: Centenary News

Posted by: CN Editorial Team